Eat the World – Part 23

It’s the South American special, and the final Eat the World for the year! 52 countries in 52 weeks (actually came in early) and plenty of yummy gems along the way. In this last installment are four recipes that combo really well; the two salady ones would perfectly complement the Argentinian ribs. There’s also a Peruvian pasta that’s not what it seems… Until next time, keep on eating.

Brazil

etw-brazil

I didn’t think you could top a classic potato salad. Turns out this Brazilian recipe does the trick! Almost everything about this is good for you… except for the main ingredient, which is effectively potato fries. To do this justice, mix all the ingredients with the mayo prior to adding the potatoes, then serve immediately. They’ll lost the best of their crunch quite quickly.

Crispy potato salad (Salpicao)

Ingredients (Serves 4)

  • 200 gr corn kernels
  • 2/3 cup frozen peas
  • canola oil for deep frying
  • 4 medium potatoes, julienned
  • 2 medium smoked chicken breast, shredded
  • 2 carrots, shredded
  • 1 small green apple, julienned
  • ½ red onion, finely diced
  • 100 gr pitted olives, finely diced
  • ½ cup raisins
  • ½ cup whole-egg mayonnaise
  • Small bunch of chives, chopped
  • Small bunch parsley, chopped

Method

  1. Heat about 3 cm of oil in a deep heavy based frying pan until a cube of bread dropped into the oil turns golden brown in 10 seconds. Pat the potatoes dry with paper towel, then cook in the hot oil for 5 minutes, or until golden and crispy. Remove the potatoes using a slotted spoon and drain on paper towel.
  2. Blanch peas in warm water for 5 minutes until thawed. Combine the potatoes, corn, peas, chicken, carrots, apple, onion, olives, raisins and mayonnaise in a large bowl. Mix until well combined. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
  3. Transfer the salad to a serving dish and sprinkle with the chives and parsley. Serve immediately, while the potatoes are still crispy.

 

Uruguay

etw-uruguay

Wait, South American vegetarian? With no beans? Apparently it does exist, although I’m yet to believe there’s any sense of common about it. In any case, this here is a healthy and delicious escape from the meats, crammed with powerful lemon and garlic flavours. Where you don’t have carrot tops, or they’re not your thing, a parsley and coriander combo provides an alternative with extra flavour.

Roast vegetable and buckwheat salad with preserved lemon chimichurri

Ingredients (Serves 2)

  • 1 bunch Dutch carrots, green tops reserved, halved lengthways
  • 2 medium zucchini, cut into 3 cm-thick slices
  • 1 medium eggplant, cut into 3 cm-thick slices
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • ¼ preserved lemon, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon ground fennel
  • 125 gr buckwheat
  • 2 tablespoon roasted almonds, crushed
Chimichurri
  • ¾ cup picked carrot greens, finely chopped
  • ¼ preserved lemon, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 ½ tablespoon cider vinegar
  • 1 small tomato, finely chopped
  • ½ cup corn kernels
  • 1 clove garlic

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 200C. Place the carrots, zucchini and eggplant in a large bowl. Using the back of a knife, mash the garlic cloves and preserved lemon to a paste. Add the olive oil and fennel and mix until combined. Add the paste to the vegetables, season and toss until well coated. Place vegetables on an oven tray lined with baking paper and transfer to the oven. Roast the zucchini and eggplant for 20 minutes and the carrot for 25 minutes or until golden and tender.
  2. Meanwhile, bring 220 ml of water to a boil in small saucepan. Add the buckwheat and a pinch of salt. Cook, uncovered, for 6–7 minutes until the water has reduced to the surface level of the buckwheat. Reduce the heat to low, cover and cook for 8–10 minutes until the buckwheat is tender. Strain if there is any residual water left.
  3. For the chimichurri, combine all the ingredients in a bowl, season to taste and mix. Add half the chimichurri to the warm buckwheat and toss to coat. Divide the buckwheat between plates and arrange the vegetables on top. Drizzle with the remaining chimichurri and scatter over the almonds.

 

Peru

etw-peru

Sopa seca (Serves 4)

Sopa seca is a strange one, a trick. It looks like pasta as you know it, but sure doesn’t taste like it. Here you develop a nice chilli sauce, pack it with beans and top it with coriander cream. The pasta is fried, then boiled, then baked. It takes on a lot and delivers a hearty and unique dinner.

Ingredients (Serves 4)

  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for greasing
  • 300 gr angel hair pasta, broken into 10cm pieces
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 5 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 4 long red chillies
  • 400 gr can of tomatoes, whole or chopped
  • 1 ½ teaspoons ground coriander
  • 1 ½ teaspoons dried oregano
  • 2 fresh bay leaves
  • 1 ½ chicken stock
  • 400 gr canned black beans, drained and rinsed
  • Handful chopped coriander leaves, to serve
Coriander cashew cream
  • 1 cup raw cashews, soaked overnight
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • Bunch of coriander, stalks and leaves roughly chopped
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 170C. Lightly grease a 30 cm x 20 cm ovenproof dish with olive oil.
  2. Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the pasta and fry for 2–3 minutes until golden brown. Drain on paper towel.
  3. Place the onion, garlic, chillies, tomatoes, ground coriander and oregano in a blender and process until smooth. Transfer the sauce to a pan with the bay leaves and cook over medium heat for 10 minutes.
  4. Stir in the stock, fried pasta and beans, and season. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, breaking up the pasta with a spoon, for 5 minutes.
  5. Remove the bay leaves, then transfer the mixture to the prepared dish, cover loosely with foil and bake for 20 minutes.
  6. For the cashew cream, drain the cashews, then place in a blender with the remaining ingredients and 1/3 cup cold water. Whiz until smooth.
  7. Serve sopa drizzled with coriander cashew cream and with coriander leaves scattered over the top.

 

Argentina

etw-argentina

A little chocolate goes a long way when you’re finishing up the preparation of these ribs. This is a decadent recipe on all counts – a thick sugary syrup topped up with red wine and finished with dark chocolate, not to mention the bathing beef ribs! Serve these with a bitter salad (I used radicchio) to balance the sweetness of the sauce. Then lapse into a delightful ribs coma…

Asado in black sauce with chocolate

Ingredients (Serves 4)

  • 1 kg asado beef ribs
  • 6 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • ½ teaspoon allspice
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 1 onion, peeled, finely chopped
  • 1 celery stick, finely chopped
  • 1 large carrot, finely chopped
  • ½ cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
  • ¼ cup tomato paste
  • 1 cup red wine
  • 2 cups beef stock
  • 20 gr dark chocolate, finely chopped

Method

  1. Tie each rib lengthwise with kitchen string, tying around the meat to secure it to the bone, and place in a bowl. Using a mortar and pestle, grind 3 garlic cloves, oregano, allspice, cayenne pepper and ½ tsp salt to a paste. Rub paste over ribs, cover and refrigerate overnight.
  2. Heat oil in a large heavy-based saucepan over medium heat. Working in batches, cook ribs for 4 minutes on each side or until browned. Remove from the pan and set aside. Add onion, celery, carrot and remaining garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, for 6 minutes or until softened. Add sugar and continue cooking for 2 minutes or until sugar has melted. Add tomato paste and cook for a further 2 minutes. Return ribs to pan with the wine and stock and bring to the boil. Reduce to low heat and cook, covered, for 2 hours or until the ribs are tender.
  3. Remove ribs from pan and set aside. Increase heat to high, then bring sauce to the boil and cook for 10 minutes or until thickened and reduced by a third. Remove from the heat and stir through the chocolate until melted. Pour sauce over ribs, to serve.
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