Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Argentina: Food

Beef is the national dish of Argentina. There are huge cattle ranches in Argentina, and the gaucho, or Argentine cowboy, is a well-known symbol of Argentine individualism. Many dishes contain meat, but prepared in different ways. A favorite main course is parrillada, a mixed grill of steak and other cuts of beef. Grilled steak is called churrasco , a beef roast cooked over an open fire is called asado , and beef that is dipped in eggs, crumbs, and then fried is called milanesa. Carbonada is a stew that contains meat, potatoes, sweet potatoes, and chunks of corn on the cob.


Because many Argentines are descendents of the Italian immigrants who came to Argentina in the late 1800s, Italian dishes are found throughout the country. Some favorite Italian dishes include pizza, all kinds of pastas (such as spaghetti and ravioli), and ñoquis , (gnocchi—potato dumplings) served with meat and tomato sauce.

ñoquis de soja

Argentines eat more fruit than almost any other group of people in the world. Some favorite fruits include peaches, apricots, plums, pears, cherries, grapes and the fruit of a prickly pear cactus.

Empanadas, little pies usually stuffed with beef, vegetables, and cheese, are a favorite dish. These are eaten by hand and they are often enjoyed as a snack, or may be carried to school for lunch.


Chimichurri , a dipping sauce, is usually served with empanadas . Because the sauce has to sit for two hours before eating, it is prepared before the empanadas.



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