Monday, September 5, 2011

Gastronomy: Argentina Style

**READER ADVISORY**
This blog has a lot of pictures.

Argentina is known for their amazing home style cooking.
Their food is about as far from Mexican food as you can possibly imagine (a common misconception) and closer to Italian food (because of all the immigrates).

It wouldn't have been a vacation to Argentina if it wasn't for all the delicious food...
Especially all the wonderfulness that Sergio's mom makes. 

Anyway, grab something to wipe the drool off your chin because here is my quick and basic guide of Northern Argentina goodness.

MATE:
A hot drink that is made out of different herbs that grow in the back of people's yards or that you can buy in the store called Yerba (shur-ba).
It kind of tastes like alfalfa if it is your first time trying it, but with enough sugar it is heavenly...and addictive.
You could pretty much find any real Argentine family sitting outside on the porch drinking mate at some point during the day.
Since Sergio's dad was on vacation with us he has a strict mate-ing schedule to especially  follow...
Right after waking up (6 am)
When everyone else wakes up (8:30-9:00 am)
Right before Lunch (11:30-12:30)
After "siesta" nap time.  (6:00 pm)
Before eating dinner (9:00 pm)
Before going to bed (11:00 pm) 
Also if anyone comes over it automatically because mate time again...even if you just drank mate.

BOMBITAS DE PAPAS:
Little Potato Bombs
This is a family tradition.
They are made with a potato dough that is filled with ground beef and wonderfulness...
and like all good Argentine food, they are fried. 
I don't have a picture of the finished product, but just imagine Heaven in your mouth and that is them.
Or you could just look at this not quite right picture I found on Google.

SANDWICH (SANGUICH) DE MILANESA:
This is a classic Tucuman plate.
What can be better than breaded steaks that are then fried and slapped between lettuce, tomatoes, mustard, A LOT of  Mayonnaise and Delicious sandwich bread.
Oh yah baby. 

POLLO CON ARROZ: 
Chicken with Rice
This is one plate that even us northerners are familiar with. 
They teased Sergio's Aunt that this is the only thing she knows how to make.
It's mostly funny because it is also the only thing I know how to (kind of) make.
The yellow rice is made with a type of fake saffron and is heavenly.

ASADO: 
Barbaque...with out barbaque sauce...
This Delicious mix of different cuts of meat is a symbol of Argentina gastronomy. 
Argentina has always been known for their homegrown, grass fed beef.
It really does live up to the reputation.
The meat is only seasoned with lemon and salt and then grilled over coal.
Oh My Goodness it's GOoooood.
It's worth the 2 days of travel just for this tastiness.
Asado is always served with several different salads and bread.

Asqueroso Asado:
Disgusting Asado.
 
This is Sergio's favorite type of asado.
Chinchulin (Intestines),
Riñónes (kidneys),
and Morsilla (blood sausage. Yes...sausage made out of cooked blood...seriously).
Luckily next to those beautiful kidneys there, they were nice enough to get me some amazing sirloin.
They also bought me some normal chorrizo (sausage).
You can tell my Maira's face that she's not a fan of all the yucky stuff either. 

LOCRO:
You can read all about locro in an older blog here:
This is the Argentine way. 
Also cooked over coal. 
With a lot of squash and goodness. 
This is what it is really suppose to look like. 
This is a meal that you make a bunch of, share it with everyone...and you still have enough left over to eat for weeks.
Not everyone is a fan...but it's pretty darn good.
 

PIZZA CASEROS: 
Homemade Pizza.
Enough said... 

DULCE DE LECHE CON PAN
Dulce de Leche/Carmel
with Bread.
Dulce de Leche was actually invented in Argentina and is well known around all of Latin America.
Bread is a staple in Argentina.
It's not a meal without bread.
BUT...
it is to be eaten during the meal.
(Not to clean your plate with.)
If they catch you eating bread after the food it is a sign that you didn't get enough to eat and that you are still hungry and you will probably be served another plate of food.
There are a lot of different types of bread.
Usually so you have something to eat while you are drinking mate.
This is called a bollo. They are made with lard and really good.
La Gringa even wanted to try it.

HELADO:
Ice cream
Argentine Ice cream is pretty much the best ice cream I have ever eaten.
And where it is especially hot in Tucuman...they eat a lot of ice cream. 

EMPANADAILLA: 
Sweet empanadas
Although empanadas are a typical meal in Argentina, Empanadillas are a type of snack or desert.
The dough is a harder and a little drier and they are filled sweet potato, dulce de leche or sweet cayote. 

I wish I had pictures of everything we ate...because seriously...I have gained back about all my baby weight.
(Like 9 months pregnant baby weight.)
Even our Gringanada gained a few pounds (2 to be exact) on our 3 week escapade.

Thanks goodness I married an Argentine that knows how to cook or we might just have had to move back there.

5 comments:

SAYDA said...

Yummy! That looked delicious!!! Well not the intestines and sausage picture. Yuck! Mexicans also eat intestines. I never got brave enough. So wonderful that the little one went to meet her roots. I love you Kira. Glad you're back safe.

Malissa said...

Mmmmmm! Pass some my way!

Lene said...

Yum...except the asado.

Janiece said...

I am even happier that Sergio is an amazing cook...because I get to enjoy it...and mostly because you still live in the states.
I love you.

Kara D. said...

Your pictures did make me drool, but when I got to the pictures with the intestines I just about threw up. You can't do that to a pregnant woman! LOL. I am so glad you had a good time on your trip.