• The Belém egg tart pastry, the best kept secret of Lisbon baking

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    The Belém egg tart pastry, the best kept secret of Lisbon baking

A secret recipe kept under lock and key that was created at the Hieronymites Monastery, endless queues and a flavour that is famous throughout the world. That is one way to describe the Pastel de Belém, an establishment that has been an institution in Lisbon since 1837 and a must for all those who appreciate the taste of the famous Portuguese tarts of the same name.

Every day, in the “Oficina do Segredo” (The Secret Office), the pastry chefs prepare the cream and puff pastry with which the Belém egg tart pastries are made, at a rate which in high season can reach 40,000 daily units. Although the base of this dessert is the cream made with sugar, milk and egg yolk, only 6 people know the secret behind these “Pastéis de Belém”.  It is not just the recipe that is a secret: there is also the method. And although it is a seemingly simple dessert, nobody in the city has managed to achieve a flavour like that of the bakers in Belém.

Luckily, although the recipe is known to very few, all visitors to Lisbon can try them. They can be taken on their own, or with sugar and cinnamon to taste.