Yes, it is time I talk about food. Eating in Buenos Aires is like falling in love with the city. I wasn’t in love at first taste but it grew on me. Fortunately, it grew on me. Otherwise, my waistline would have grown exponentially.
In general, eating in Argentina means you can forget about being a vegetarian. Sure, there are various possibilities if you try but when the national passion is beef, then any culinary experience will involve beef. It can range from the small emapanadas to plates of beef steak.
Unlike being in France or other countries I’ve been, I had been slow in experimenting. There is still the pasta issue, meaning I just cannot find my favourite barilla brand pasta to cook at home. The closest I can get to is barrila lasagna pasta, then again, I don’t have an oven to make lasagna. Yes, I need to move on with my issue of pasta.
Eating outside offers a whole new range of experience. Most caferias serves a good “bife de chorizo”. Chorizo is not the Spanish sausage that is slight spicy and fried in oil. In this case, it is a beef steak. Then there is “bife ojo” which my kiwi-lived –in-austria-restaurant-owner-friend told is the best cut of beef possible. It is the “eye” steak. If you’ve tried the Cabans Las Lilas’ kobe ojo beef, a mouthful to say and impossible to finish, you’ll get red eyed too at the price and quality. That later.
Snacks or light meals in Argentina includes the lovely empanadas which is simply pastry wrapped with meat or vegetables or both. It resembles “curry puff” in Singapore. If you have neither been to Argentina nor Singapore, I implore you to use your imagination: the crust of thin pizza with minced meat and sauce.
My breakfast is usually a “café con leche” (espresso coffee with milk) and a churro. Now, the churro is similar to “yew cha kway” in Singapore which is impossible to explain to anyone. It’s made of flour made into a stick and fried sprinkled with sugar. Dip it into the coffee and it could be the most fattening meal of your day.
Let me finish with “Cabana las Lilas”. It is a restaurant at the port of Argentina and one of the most famous restaurants here. It is also known as a big tourist trap and a dish can range from 15 pesos to 280 pesos. That meant that just having a beef steak can mean 45 euros. But wait till you try it. I was with 2 other girlfriends. It was the perfect lunch with wine, beef and dessert. The lovely waiters were so accommodating that we indulged in a very extended meal. Starters were served with a range of cold dishes. We each ordered a kobe ojo bife. Kobe beef is the most notoriously known type of beef that is tender and melts in your mouth that is usually only found in Japan and Korea. In this instance, it is the best cut of the best type of beef cooked in Argentinean style of slow fire barbecue, which is also known to be the best way to cook meat. The result is meat that cut easily and melts in the mouth that is delicious in itself without sauce, just a tiny pinch of salt. Desert was a plate of small cakes served with coffee and in my case, tea for serious digestion. While we work through the meal and bottles of wine, we also got through sex, men, politics, religion, food, living, music, movies, life. I was very drunk when I left that restaurant. I won’t explain the damage but safe to say, I ate and then I REALLY ATE and I HAD EATEN.