The typical dishes of the Argentinean cuisine
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Because of the massive immigration, there is the debate if there really is a traditional cuisine in Argentina. It is said that “traditional food is eaten in the streets and consumed frequently by the poor.” The traditional or typical food of a country is the one that is eaten regularly, no matter if it is at home or in expensive restaurants. It is also the one sold in street stalls, bought by the working class at midday for being cheap and accessible. During this tasting tour in Buenos Aires, we will try the traditional dishes of the Argentinean cuisine.
The Argentinean cuisine is made up of a combination of European, Hispanic American (criollo) and native flavours. The Argentinian gastronomy in general is strongly carnivorous thanks to its famous meats of excellent quality. The typical dishes differ from north to south. In Buenos Aires, for example, the Spanish and Italian influence in their kitchen is deeply rooted thanks to the great immigrations. But there are some that are popular throughout the country.
In this tasting we will have a lunch consisting of a starter and a main course, a dessert and later a snack.
One of the most characteristic foods in Argentina is the empanada. In this South American country, empanadas are prepared in a variety of flavors and for all tastes. During the tour we will talk a little about the history of empanadas and Argentinian Empanadas.
Argentinian Traditional Grill
Grilling or meat is also known as asado. “Asado” means grilled ribs, and “parrillada” stand for the following items:
The roasted strip is the rib of the animal that is cut crosswise in “strips”, so the cut includes pieces of bone.
The “Chorizo criollo”, is done uncured, is of soft texture but you can not eat it raw. It is eaten after being cooked on the grill, and you can also eat in sandwich called popularly Choripán.
The black pudding is a sausage based on coagulated and boiled blood, usually pork, in dark mahogany color. It is usually mixed with pork fat.
The “entraña” or entrails, a muscle that forms part of the diaphragm of the animal, is attached to the ribs on the inside of the rib. It comes coated with a membrane called “skin”.
For Argentines, the thymus gland is more than just a viscera. It is the ciollo version of a delicatessen, the Pampa response to the delicate French foie gras. The molleja is typical of a good roast and is the one consisting in the thymus gland of a bovine.
Also considered delicatessen. It is the form used to refer to the small bowel of cattle. It’s already clean from the butcher shop. It is found in the first part of the digestive system. Inside it contains the chyle, which is responsible for digestion and is made up of fats, which gives it its special flavor.
Wine tasting from the three main wine producing regions available to wine enthusiasts.
The bread pudding, one of the most traditional desserts of Argentinian gastronomy, had its origin in the economic needs that struck our country at the beginning of the twentieth century, when the most humble families decided to elaborate a sweet dish with leftovers from the previous day, for which they were inspired by the traditional English puddings.
The custom of drinking coffee was adopted thanks to the great Italian immigration. Coffee as a common and cultural beverage emerged in Europe in the eighteenth century and from there it began to expand to the rest of the world, even though in countries in the Middle East they had the habit of drinking coffee much earlier.
Artisan Ice Cream
In artisan ice cream the mixture based on water, sugar, herbs and spices becomes ice cream, brought by the Arabs to Sicily, the history of ice cream crosses all our culture, Mediterranean and classical. It was the Romans, who in fact acquired the techniques of conservation and food processing.
At this time of day we will try the Argentinian maté and Alfajores.
Yerba Mate (its scientific name is Ilex Paraguariensis) is a tree native to the Paranaense jungle. In the wild, it reaches a height of between 12 and 16 meters and there are mate herb plantations of up to 100 years in some Jesuit missions. To facilitate harvesting, plants are pruned up to 2 times a year at a height of 2 meters on average. The origin of the mate herb goes back to the Guarani natives, they used their leaves as a drink, cult object and currency exchange with other peoples.
During the long voyages through the jungle, the conquistadors noticed that the Guaranis had more resistance after taking this sacred drink. The conquistadors learned from the Guarani the use and virtues of maté herb, and made their consumption spread, from their area of origin to the entire Viceroyalty of the Río de la Plata.
Later the Jesuits introduced the crop in the missions. They were the great ones responsible for the maté herb to be known in the civilized world.
The maté in Argentina, is drunk in different types of containers. The most used is the “Porongo” or pumpkin maté, fruit of a plant (Lagenaria vulgaris). The word “maté” derives from the Quechua”Mati”, which means pumpkin.
The Lagenaria vulgaris is the family of Pumpkins native to the maté herb production area, besides drinking maté, the Guarani used them to transport water during their long walks through the jungle and also to store grains.
With the large European, German, Polish, Ukrainian and Scandinavian immigrations, these people engaged in the production of maté herb. These companies currently bill millions of dollars.
Christian Syrian and Lebanese immigrants in Argentina extended the habit of taking maté to their countries of origin.
Most of the alfajor varieties in Latin America come from Spain, where there are antecedents from at least the eighteenth century. This variety is made up of two or more biscuits joined by a sweet filling and generally dipped in chocolate, icing or powdered sugar. The filling is usually milk caramel or honey, but there are also alfajores with fruit, chocolate mousse filling.
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