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Food Photos from Chile and Argentina

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Wow! that piggy bowl is worth the trip!

How many are you bringing back?


Sorry no piggy bowls...not for sale...and HUGE. Don't know if there is a "piggy bowl village" but there is a town where they hand make the small, plain bowls for Pastel de Choclo.

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Lunch is "on our own" at the fish market in Puerto Montt...with the fishing boats tied up right outside.

There is lots of good looking produce, including these huge garlic cloves...and some "sea products".




Since I know almost nothing about fish and seafood I'm not much help here. But lots of fresh fish and also smoked(?) and dried ( the strings of things hanging)shellfish and fish.




My lunch was "surprise" an empanada ...this time with melted cheese (of course) and tiny shrimp. The shrimp didn't add much but the whole thing was delicous with the great crust which the cook was pressing out in a pasta machine. I'd love that recipe.1-IMG_4004.JPG

After lunch we spent our time in the "artisan market".


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i can help you with the seafood... hanging ropes are smoked ribbed mussels, red sea squirts, oysters etc. pink pointy things in plastic packages are surf clams (my personal favourite).

giant garlic is elephant garlic. in southern Chile it comes from Chiloe island and is called 'ajo Chilote'. (the best garlic i've ever eaten)

the neatly packaged thing in a block is kelp. much loved and eaten in southern Chile. hope you have tried (merluza/sea urchin/prawn/surf clam etc) ceviche at the market.

wandering around the market is one of the things i enjoy most in (southern) Chile.

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Next we go over the Andes (at under 4000'), see the destruction from the volcano eruption last June, and end up in another very European looking place.

But for now...just a couple more sweets to remember Chile by:

BAGS of Manjar, and a batch of over the top Alfajores robed in chocolate.1-IMG_4016.JPG


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We're going over the Andes from Chile to Argentina and this is what we see. This is not snow in the mountains, it's "ash"/sand/pumice (tiny crushable rocks)from the June volcanic eruption. Everything is covered except the road which has now been cleared.

After going through the the Chilean border crossing (leaving) we drive several miles and enter Argentina. A few miles later we arrive in the town of Villa la Angostura, our first stop in Argentina. Here we eat lunch, learn about a new kind of money ( but they take Chilean pesos too) and switch buses (and all the luggage) for our trip on to Bariloche.

We split this lovely deep fried chicken dish... with fries. 1-IMG_4085.JPG

Another couple had this piece of "apple pie" 1-IMG_4086.JPG

We used the last of our Chilean money for a packet of alfajores and it's on to Bariloche, land of lakes, mountains, skiing, and chocolate.

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So anybody know the deal with Chilean cuisine... the pics on this travel log smack of generic Latin American business hotel food.. most of those dishes could be anywhere in Latin America ... does Chile not much distinctive cuisine... or is it just marginalized, hard to find etc.,

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This trip log is what it says it is...pictures of the food I ate in Chile and Argentina. Not exciting enough...sorry.

SO now it's Bariloche, Argentina...hit hard by the volcano but starting to recover.

The only hotel meal (aside from breakfasts) of the trip in the gorgeous Hotel Cacique Inacayal overlooking the lake.

The town has many German families from both before, and after World War 2. The influence shows in the delicious baked goods.

Breads with dinner:1-IMG_4146.JPG

Poorly described on menu, turned out to be a sort of strudle with vegetables, and a beet "trail".1-IMG_4147.JPG

Main of our first Argentine steak, strangely overcooked (for Americans?) since we had expected practically raw. Tasty but we were not too impressed.1-IMG_4148.JPG

Wonderful breakfast buffet, again with a variety of "cut them yourself" breads and the usual fruits and yogurt, butter and jams.1-IMG_4150.JPG

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Bariloche is known for its chocolates...having to do with its European immigrants. There are shops all over town selling adorable boxes of your choice of hundreds of kinds. Delicious of course. But for pure WOW factor the Mamuschka store can't be beat. Why the Russian doll theme I do not know but for display and presentation the "red" store is amazing. Other stores have other color themes, there is great competition.



And there is this window of things having to do with good eating.


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THIS is why you come to Bariloche! We rode up the chairlift at a ski area just outside of town. It was cloudy when we arrived, but after we went inside for a piece of cake the weather started to improve. The signature drink of the cafe at the top of the lift was hot chocolate with whipped cream and a shot of brandy. And these are some of the cakes they were selling, note that lemon pie is still popular.


This is the one I would love to make with its dozens of very thin layers of cookie(?) interlaced with old friend Dulce de Leche, and almonds.1-IMG_4187.JPG How DO they make those layers so thin?


One last view with the sun out, of the surrounding lake area.

Then we're off to an overlook, with goodies for sale, and a VERY local cerveccer

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If you look up recipes for Sans Rival, you'd probably find something very similar to the cake you had. Sans Rival is a Filipino dessert comprised of thin layers of meringue interspersed with buttercream (and nuts--often cashews).

Did you notice a difference in the food between what you were eating prior to the tour (when you were on your own) and during the tour? To me, the food you had while on your own seemed more appetizing, while a lot of meals I've seen since seems more like food geared towards tourists. (just an observation, not a judgment)

IME, Chilean food isn't really all that interesting (I had a good friend in high school who was Chilean--they came to Canada as refugees in the '70s--and I used to eat at their place a lot), but there are a few things I do love--empanadas and sopaipillas. I've never had sopaipillas like the ones my friend's mother made, so I'm hoping you have some Chilean sopaipillas so I can see if they're like what I remember! (will you be going back to Chile, or are you departing from Argentina?).

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I know a lot of people have no use for tours, and we used to travel on our own but now we like the comfort of a tour, and the learning that takes place. Grand Circle has cut back on the number of meals included, but we thought on this trip that the quality and interest value were very good. We did a family winery, a fish market in Santiago, a nice old restaurant in Valparaiso, the rodeo demo place, the upcoming cervecceria, and the whole lamb grilling on the estancia, and a meal in a home. Of course all of them are tourist places, we do come to see what there is to see.

Usually there were 2 meals provided, sometimes only breakfast. Most of the included meals were late lunch. Fine with us but some of the more timid travelers who did not want to go "out" in evening were kind of stuck. On our own we tried to get something "small" , often without much success. Later we learned to split because we were just eating too much. Unlike the provided meals we tended more to just get a pizza, pasta, or even just soup (it was huge too). So not a full meal with salad or starter and dessert. Breakfast with all the cakes and sweets could have been our dessert.

A big difference when we were on our own in Buenos Aires at the end was we tried whenever we could to eat outside since that is a treat for us in March. Places were smaller, English not spoken but we managed. We ate a couple of pizzas, and I discovered Sorrentinos...large round ravioli like stuffed pasta that were fabulous. All the Italian food we had was delicious. Local? Well it's very popular with the locals and the people who make it are local. We were just with Spanish speaking customers instead of English speaking ones and we were not in a "locale". Of course you get to choose when you're paying.

I'm not thinking "our own" food was so much better, though I could have gotten by on the peach drink and the cheese and shrimp empanada. No doubt I missed a bunch of local dishes but we enjoyed what we had.

Sorry no Chilean sopaipillas, but some Argentine ones to start lunch on the estancia. It was a one way trip, Peru (for DH) , Chile, Argentina (Patagonia) and Argentina (Buenos Aires....with a side to Iguazu).

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Hmmmm. The Chilean restaurant here had a dessert called Torta de Mil Hojas or 1000 Layers Cake. I never saw it or tried it since I have to avoid sweets but perhaps it would be the same in Argentina or a similar name?

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I forgot about Torta de Mil Hojas. The cookie-like layers threw me off--the Torta de Mil Hojas I've had tends to have layers that are more cake-like than cookie-like, but I think it's often made that way because of convenience.

If it is Torta de Mil Hojas, the layers are rolled out very thinly--like making vinarterta. It's time consuming, but not difficult, and it's worth the work, I think.

I actually don't mind tours, especially the first time I visit a place. But food is such a priority for me (I often spend more time deciding where to eat than what sights to see), and I find the food to be had on tours to be (very often) mediocre at best, so I often end up disappointed. If I could afford to, I'd take tours designed for food lovers (and that combine both great food as well as great sight-seeing), but I find those tend to be quite a bit more expensive.

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On the way to the brewery we find the perfect stopping spot.

It's an overlook with great scenery 1-IMG_4268.JPG

Not as sunny but still beautiful.1-DSCN4522.JPG

AND....there is shopping. Not only hand knit sweaters, and jewelry, and other crafts. But one couple had a nice selection of local products. Tea, and pate and packets of spices. I bought one packet for "all Patagonian foods" and another for empanadas. The husband had the grill going, there were going to be grilled meats. The perfect combination.1-IMG_4263.JPG

Our tour guide stocked up on the "Mountain Wine" a sort of spiced wine that we shared the next day.

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DH would consider beer to be food...as perhaps some of you will too. We went to visit this small family run brewery and restaurant for a "tour" and lunch. Tomas Gilbert took over the beer making from his father who now runs the restaurant which is very much in the after ski sort of style.


Tomas now brews and bottles a total of 700 bottles per week in three types... lager,stout and red. As you can guess with those numbers it is for "local consumption" only. I'm not a beer drinker but DH thought it was excellent.1-IMG_4283.JPG

Our starter was a shot of excellent squash soup, a tiny empanada, and rolls...this time with a kind of hummus.1-IMG_4281.JPG

DH had the lamb stew, a generous portion which he really enjoyed.1-IMG_4282.JPG

I chose the ravioli (seen behind the beer) which was either trout or salmon...sorry I can't remember. It was very good though I thought the fish got lost with pasta and sauce.

They had these gorgeous alfajores for sale too.1-IMG_4291.JPG

A last minute reminder:1-IMG_4280.JPG

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Chilean sopaipillas

I DID find some, from the same place at the fish market in Puerto Montt where I had the cheese and shrimp empanada.

Not ours, but took the picture of them when others got them. Served with pebre it looks like. That woman in that shop "knew" dough, you can just tell they are crispy and light.1-IMG_4006.JPG

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I have loved reading your food tour JTravel, thanks so much for sharing all these wonderful descriptions and pictures. Sweetie and I are celebrating our 25th this coming fall and were thinking about traveling a bit in celebration. I was showing her your posts, and now I think we'll be going to Chile !

Orem, Utah

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I have loved reading your food tour JTravel, thanks so much for sharing all these wonderful descriptions and pictures. Sweetie and I are celebrating our 25th this coming fall and were thinking about traveling a bit in celebration. I was showing her your posts, and now I think we'll be going to Chile !

If you want to talk more about the travel aspects of this trip you can PM me. I think it was good to see parts of both Chile and Argentina...not that there is not enough to fill quite a bit of time in either country...especially if you are interestd in more active/ outdoor things.

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Hmmmm. The Chilean restaurant here had a dessert called Torta de Mil Hojas or 1000 Layers Cake. I never saw it or tried it since I have to avoid sweets but perhaps it would be the same in Argentina or a similar name?

It did have that name and I have found recipes online. It sounds like a LOT of work and I don't think a home cook could get the layers that thin. But when I next need a special dessert I'm going to try it.

Today I used 2 cans of sweetened condensed milk and made Dulce de Leche in the microwave. It took at least an hour, heat, stir, repeat.....a lot. But I was doing other things and there is nothing hard about it. With that done ahead making the cake would be easier.

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Next day in Bariloche it is time for the visit to an Estancia/Ranch. Beef is a huge export from Argentina and this kind of cattle operation is supposedly how it is done. So whether visitors are on a group tour, or backpacking through South America...this is a highly popular activity. Out of the city and off the paved roads (and the grid) we bumped along to the ranch. As at other venues a place has been built to take care of visitors needs... a nice eating hall, large kitchen, bathrooms etc.

We are welcomed with these sopapillas and chimichurri sauce.1-IMG_4332.JPG


As always there must be Mate to drink, in tea bags here.


The area with the visitors dining hall is only one locale of the workers, there is another area with the main house and several other homes, and the other employees are scattered in various locations where they will be needed. The ranch is owned by a wealthy "international" person, who according to the manager is very good to his workers. For instance, all of the children of the workers are bussed into Bariloche to attend a private school and their education is paid through college if they wish.

The manager of the ranch, who was European, explained about the operaton and (again) the effect of the volcanic eruption. There were several inches of ash on everything...the cattle ate it, drank water and it set up inside them and they started to die. The team then arranged for 40 tractor trailers to come and get the cattle and drive them to land near Buenos Aires. It was a huge operation, but I am sorry I have forgotten how many head of cattle they had on their 50,000 acres. Those cattle had not yet returned so we saw only a few hundred, and some sheep.

We walked a bit to get an idea of the vastness of the land, and the quietness.1-IMG_4339.JPG


Next we watched a sheep being sheared the old fashioned way...with heavy hand scissors.


Since it was heading toward fall and winter we were thinking that the sheared sheep might be the sacrificed lamb for the next group. Because the meal today centers around lamb and it's been in the fireplace cooking for us.


Plus a chicken for those who don't eat lamb.1-DSCN4593.JPG

Time to chop the lamb and pass it out...


Dinner is served...bread and chimichurri 1-IMG_4362.JPG

And an empanada of course...1-IMG_4365.JPG

A plate of goodness...roast lamb, 2 salads, 1-IMG_4376.JPG

Goodbye ranch...thanks for our introduction to the cattle business.


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