Category: Featured

From The Past: Asados and the Peon Way of Eating Meat »

Quite some time has passed since my last “From The Past” post, so I decided to jump back into the news archives at Google for any interesting articles that may have been missed or added since. With this latest search I found that Argentinean asados might have been a somewhat popular topic back in the early 1960. I have no concrete proof of this of course, since I was born a decade later, but due to the number of articles found, asados were at least a novel curiosity at the time. The interesting topic to note are the repeated descriptions of how peons-a term still used to this day in Argentina in regards to those who work on estancias, consume their roasted meat by biting and slicing off morsels of meat. The tradition dates back to the era of the gauchos and how they roasted and ate freshly slaughtered cattle with nothing more than their trusty facónes, or gaucho knives. For the journalists who witnessed this act during their journey to Argentina, it must have been quite the spectacle.

Recipe: Chilean Sea Bass a la “Tia Elvira” From The Restaurant Tia Elvira In Ushuaia »

I was asked recently if I could provide a recipe that matches or comes close to some of the cream-based seafood dishes found in the finer restaurants of Tierra del Fuego. While most are rather simple, consisting of nothing more than cream, butter, parmasean cheese, and perhaps a few signature herbs and spices, I decided to pass along a more complex recipe that was submitted to a local cookbook by the chef and owner of Tia Elvira restaurant in Ushuaia. Last November I was able to finally enjoy a meal at Tia Elvira for the first time and sample this dish, except with trout instead of Chilean sea bass (merluza negra aka black hake)–what the recipe calls for, but only after some recent research did I realize that the recipe has been available to me for the past few years. Part of the reason why is hinted at below but let me just say that overall, the edition in my hands, the 5th, is a bit lacking in all aspects.

Obligatory End of Year Holiday Gift and Cooking Guide for 2009 »

Well, 2009 is coming to an end and the webosphere is bursting at the seams with holiday guides tossing out ideas for those who are stumped on what to give or cook. Here’s my little contribution for those Argentinean flair to their holidays.

Custom Built Parrilla *Updated Again* »

Ken Barger, a nice gentleman in Panama, emailed me a while back with some questions about building a parrilla-smoker hybrid. Since I had never built a parrilla before, I could only offer a few tips and suggestions from what I have learned over the years in addition to some of the specs from my parrilla. […]

Marinated Olives, Sun-dried Tomatoes, and Roasted Red Peppers Recipe »

Marinated Olives, Sun-Dried Tomatoes, and Roasted Red Peppers As I have mentioned a few times before, it’s not surprising to see a few antipasto appetizers offered to those who need to calm their hunger pangs until the time comes to serve meat at an asado. Hard salami, artisanal cheese loaded with black peppercorns or ají molido, and pickled artichoke hearts are just a few. Pickled, brined, or marinated fruits and vegetables may even show up on the table to accompany the succulent meats. Their tart and salty flavors serve as a refreshing break from the constant flow of meat, offal, and sausage.

Gourmet and Artisanal Food Products in Argentina »

Hoisin Sauce & Wasabi Mustard Except for perhaps restaurant coverage, when the topic of food in Argentina is covered by guide books, travel articles, and blogs the authors usually stick to the usual suspects like beef and huge steaks, pizza, pasta, and empanadas. I guess I’m not helping too much with a site that is largely dedicated to cooking beef and asados but, you know, that has always been the mission of this site. Therefore, I’m going to go off topic here for a bit–like that has never happened before–and list some of the many gourmet and artisanal products that are produced by hard working small businesses around the country. Whether they were formed by families or friends, the visions were clear: to offer delicious gourmet products, inspired by regional cuisines from Argentina or around the world.

Know of a place that can offer Argentinean cuts of meat? »

Let all of us know! I have been thinking about building a directory list of sorts for some time but it has always been on the back burner (just like everything else!). Time to whip something up. So, if you would be so kind, help your fellow asado lovers out and let us all know […]

Buñuelos de Espinaca – Spinach Fritters »

Buñuelos de Espinaca - Spinach Fritters You might have a hard time finding buñuelos de espinaca on the menus of restaurants in Argentina but once in a while, for some, they can be part of a lunch or dinner or, simply act as a savory snack to kill the hunger. If you know someone who hates spinach, give them a taste of these and I’m sure they will change their mind.

Arroz con Leche (Rice with Milk) – Rice Pudding »

Arroz Con Leche - Rice with Milk Sometimes I wonder how many countries or cultures there are in the world that do not have some sort of rice pudding dish as part of their cuisine. In Argentina, bring up arroz con leche and someone is sure to declare that their abuela (grandmother) or mother has the best recipe. Some may stick to the basics of milk, rice, sugar, and salt. Others may add a splash of vanilla extract, a pinch of lemon zest or cinnamon, or even a dollop of dulce de leche. Arroz con leche is serious comfort food, perfect after a Sunday lunch or asado.

Tapa de Nalga – Top Round Cap »

Tapa de Nalga - Top Round Cap / Rump Cover Tapa de nalga (top round cap/topside cap) is the cap of the top round cut that comes from the round primal cut. The various cuts from the round primal are fairly tough and lack intra-muscular fat, therefore, are better off left to slow cooking. Due to the lack of fat, round’s cuts are great for milanesas or beef jerky and top round in particular is a good subsitute for brisket when making pastrami. Top round is usually sold “cap off” in many countries, with the cap discarded for other purposes, leaving a nice clean “roast” of top round. However, this is Argentina and discarded cuts tend to make their way on to the parrilla. Tapa de nalga is not a leading parrilla cut but it turns out reasonably well if cooked properly.