Thursday, 7 April 2011

Argies in Dutchland: doing what we know best

 (si prefieres leer este artículo en español, por favor sigue este enlace)

And what is that Argies do best, you may ask? Play football, dance the tango, run a country efficiently? (Allow me a little sarcasm here!) Well no, I was rather talking about having a good time with friends around food - good food and a lot of it, to be more exact.

I am sure that in many cultures and many countries people enjoy getting together, having a good time and eating good food. Inviting people over and treating guests to a home-cooked meal is not a habit exclusively practiced by us, Argies. While abroad, I have been to the homes of many people od different nationalities where I have been made to feel at home, served excellent food and been treated like royalty.

However, if you are an expat, I am sure you will agree with me that one sometimes yearns for the company of people who are just like you, who enjoy the same things, share your background, speak the same language in the same way and, most of all, miss the same things from back home, especially food. This is why with my Argentinean expat friends Mónica and Elena, we get together a couple of times a year to enjoy a true Argie feast which normally involves a lot of cooking, a lot of eating and a lot of talking and relaxing, too.
The Argie "team": Elena, Mónica and myself.
From the moment we mention a possible date for the meet-up, we start making suggestions of dishes from back home which we would like to see on the menu of the day. Because Argentina is mainly a country of immigrants, our favourite dishes normally include not only traditional dishes which originated in colonial times or with a more native Latin American flavour, like the locro Mónica made the last time or the carbonada criolla that Elena made for our first Argies in Holland party; but also dishes that were brought over from Europe by our grandparents or parents, dishes that we regularly cook at home on weekends for the family or friends -like Monica's delicious canelones or the ravioles I made when I hosted the meeting in my house last year.

Since many of the regulars here on this blog are interested in food, I thought it was a good idea to share some of the recipes of the Argentinean classics that we have cooked so far for our parties. Mónica and Elena have both kindly agreed to provide the recipes and if you have any questions about the dishes or Argentinean food in general, we will be very happy to answer them.

A word of warning though: our dishes normally include meat, so those of you who are vegetarians can skip the main dishes or try to adapt them to your taste (like the locro) or wait for the recipes of our desserts and pastry.

For our first "Argies in Dutchland" party the menu included:

Elena's Carbonada Criolla
(beef stew with pumpkin, veggies and fruit)

Mónica's Cazuela de Pollo
(chicken casserole)

Aledys' Budín de Pan al Caramelo
(bread pudding with caramel sauce)

Elena's Alfajores de Maicena
( dulce de leche sandwich shortbread biscuits)

Mónica's torta rápida de chocolate
(fast chocolate cake)

In the next blog post Elena will share with us her recipes for the carbonada criolla - a hearty country dish with an interesting background -  and the alfajores de maicena, the delicious sandwich biscuits filled with the ever-present dulce de leche... Now go and work up some appetite for the next blog entry!


May said...

This is so much fun to get together with people from your homeland. And talk over good food, sigh!!! I am curious about the bread pudding. Can I get the recipe please??

Aledys Ver said...

I'm sure you know what I mean, right? You must miss your food and your friends a lot.
I will post the recipe for the budín de pan soon, don't worry ;)

Presépio no Canal said...

Pudim de pao...tao bom!!! Adoro!!!

Mariana said...

Very nice post - I'm argentinean living in France and I miss our food a lot! I would love to have the recipe for the cazuela and the carbonada!

Aledys Ver said...

Riquísimo!! Ya viene la receta pronto ;)

Aledys Ver said...

In the next blog post you will find the recipe for the carbonada, so wait for it!

Anonymous said...

Oh, I am so hungry today for some reason and this all looks so delicious! I'm looking forward to all the recipes!

Aledys Ver said...

I know what you mean - after 9 days in Spain eating delicious tapas in 5 or 6 different places every day, I've been feeling hungry all day long since I came back! :D

Anonymous said...

El budín de pan me mató! jajajajaja RIQUIIIISSSIIIMOOOO!

Aledys Ver said...

Mel!! Te hago uno cuando vaya!! :D

Diego Ezequiel Bianchi said...

Cuantas delicias caseras mi Dios!! Me gustaría ser parte de un gran bacanal con estas cocineras argentas. Yo aporto alguna de mis especialidades.

Aledys Ver said...

Uy pero tus especialidades nos dejan petisas!! (que ya es mucho decir jaja) Creo que te pediría una pizza a la piedra.... qué hambre me dio!!! Besos.

BLOGitse said...

I just came to say: 'I'll be back tomorrow'. :)

Aledys Ver said...

Oh my, are you the Terminator? hehe

Katie said...

Yes! A post about food - you're a woman after my own heart, Aledys. Everything looks fantastic! I'm eagerly awaiting your recipe for budín de pan. :)

Aledys Ver said...

In Spanish we'd say, "Conozco los bueyes con los que aro", right? :D
Have you tried budín de pan in Nechochea?

BLOGitse said...

I'm back! :) (too busy trying to settle down; need to buy this and that little things...)

Looks like you Argies like a lot of sweet desserts, right?
I'm a meat lover and I could live without sweet desserts but not without meat.
I cooked pork chops the other day and I took a photo of them...maybe I post a picture. We love pork and it's great to eat it again (it was difficult to get in Egypt and Morocco; Muslim countries...)

By the way; how's your Dutch? Is it fluent? hard to learn?
People think we're from Holland when they hear us speaking Finnish (even they are totally different languages) but maybe they sound similar for 'outsiders'...

It's a beautiful, sunny day here in Helsinki today.
We plan to have a long walk - ooh, it's great to be able to walk and feel free again! :)

Aledys Ver said...

We Argies love primarily, lots of food when we have company and all important events, even formal ones, involve huge meals :D The Oscars, for example, without a 3 course dinner, in Argentina, would be impossible... :D
THen, we Argies, lovvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvve beef - we consume 70 kg of beef per person per year - top of the list, I think. We eat pork as well, and surprise, surprise, pork there HAS TASTE Lol! (here in Holland, I am still amazed that it tates of nothing and you need to put sauces, marinate it to get it to taste of sth at all).
You'd be happy at my mum's house then, her motto is: "no meat, no meal" :D
I am by now quite fluent in Dutch even though I speak English at home. I don't know if it would be hard for you to learn, but for me, it was rather challenging.
Finnish and Dutch? Oh my... Dtuch and German, I can see it sounding very similar but FInnish and Dutch? mmmmm
It's nice here too, for a change. Enjoy yur walk and your freedom!!! (Is it good o be out of jail? hahaha )

aggieLap said...

Wow! All that food! I'd love to try this Budín de Pan al Caramelo and the torta rápida de chocolate. Btw, the other day I've made dulce de leche and I also used it in the macaroon B. prepared. Lekker!! :)