Portuguese Caçoila (Alcatra)

“Often made with pork or beef this one-pot meal is a very traditional especially during a "matança" or winter slaughtering of pigs or cattle. This recipe is from the island of Terceira, in the Azores. It gets it name from the type of black clay pot called a "caçoila" used to cook it in. Depending who you ask, the answer may differ as to what type of meat is used. Some might tell you the stew is made with beef but if it is cooked in the pot, it is called caçoila. On the mainland, this stew, using pork, would be called "Cachola". This dish needs no knives... it's tender and absolutely delicious. "Alcatra" comes from the term "alcatre", the Portuguese word for "rump", indicating that rump roast is preferred there for pot roasts, but I've prepared this with sirloin tip roast as well with fabulous results. Note: Jamaican Whole allspice can usaually be found in Walmarts Mexican section, recipe is not the same without it.”
4hrs 35mins
3 Quarts

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. In a large heavy Dutch oven, saute the bacon in the olive oil until drippings are rendered and bacon is browned a bit and crisp; transfer bacon to a paper towel-lined plate to drain.
  2. In the bacon drippings, brown the beef roast well on all sides over moderately high heat.
  3. Transfer to the plate with bacon, then add butter, onions, paprika, garlic, bay leaves, peppercorns, wine vinegar, and allspice to the Dutch oven.
  4. Saute about 10 to 15 minutes or until lightly browned.
  5. Blend in tomato paste, lower the heat, cover and steam for 20 minutes.
  6. Remove and set aside half of the tomato-onion mixture; place the beef roast back into the Dutch oven with the bacon, then spoon remaining tomato-onion mixture on top.
  7. Carefully pour the wine and salt around the beef roast and bring to a simmer. Ensure the meat is cover with the wine.
  8. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  9. Cove and bake in the 375 degree oven for 2 hours; remove and turn beef over in the liquid.
  10. Lower oven temperature to 325 degrees F then bake uncovered about 1 hour longer or until meat is falling-apart tender (and it will be!).

Join the Conversation

  • all
  • reviews
  • tweaks
  • q & a