Meat Balls. Always popular, this easy dish will be a hit for young and old alike.

This variation of Portuguese Almôndegas (meat balls) was known to some Macanese as Amonicas. It is easy to make and quite popular as a starter at gatherings.

We present two recipes: one with a mint flavour served dry and an historical one with a dipping sauce.

Amonicas from “Guilly” Canavarro Remedios


225g | ½ lb lean minced pork

4 spring onions, chopped fine

5ml | 1 tsp soy sauce

1 thin slice bread soaked in cold water

salt and pepper to taste

10ml | 2 tsp lard

Mix well the pork, spring onions, soy sauce, bread, salt and pepper in a bowl and roll into amonica balls a little smaller than a walnut.

Heat the lard in a frying pan until very hot. Put in these amonicas being careful not to break them. Fry until nicely browned. Remove them from he lard and with the same lard make the gravy.


2 cloves of garlic, crushed flat

1 tsp soy sauce

about ¼ cup water

2 spring onions

salt and pepper to taste

Crush the garlic and cut the spring onions small. Put the garlic in the above lard and fry till brown. Remove it and add the spring onions and fry for a minute. Then add the soy sauce and water and bring it to the boil, then add the amonicas and simmer for 5 or ten minutes.

Almôndegas de Hortelã from Maria Cecília de Melo Jorge. Projecto Memoria Macaense (in Portuguese), created by Rogério P.D. da Luz

250g minced beef

1 tbsp light soy sauce

1 tbsp chopped mint

1 egg white

1 tsp corn starch

spring onions chopped

garlic minced

oil or lard

salt, pepper to taste

Season the minced beef with a little salt, pepper and the soy sauce.

Add the mint, the spring onions, the minced garlic, corn starch and egg white and mix all well to combine.

Roll small flattened almôndegas, sprinkle with more corn flour and let them rest for half an hour in a cool spot.

Fry the almôndegas in a little oil or lard on a moderate fire until brown.

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