Where’s the Beef?

You guessed it, in Argentina!  And it looks like I’ll be eating more red meat than usual this month if I’m trying to cook authentic dishes from that region of the world.  I think you’ll see through the month that the food of Southern South America is very different from that of Mexico and Central America, which many of us are more likely to associate with a Latino culture.  In fact, the ‘melting pot’ of the Argentine/Uruguayan culture is very similar to areas in the U.S.  More about the history of the region and how it affects the food culture as the month progresses.

My first dish from Argentina is called Lomito Saltado, or sauteed steak and potatoes.  A simple dish, adapted from a recipe in The Art of South American Cookery.

Lomito Saltado
2 Tbsp. butter
1 russet potato, peeled and diced
1 lb. sirloin steak, thinly sliced
2 Tbsp. vegetable oil
1/2 c. onion, diced
1/2 c. tomato, diced
1/4 tsp. dried red pepper flakes
2 tsp. cider vinegar
3/4 c. frozen green peas

Melt the butter in a skillet over medium heat and saute potatoes until browned.  Meanwhile, heat the oil in a separate skillet and stir fry the steak over high heat for about 3 minutes.  Remove the steak and keep warm.  In the same skillet, cook the onions until translucent and starting to brown.  Mix in the tomatoes and pepper flakes and cook over low heat for about 10 minutes.  Mix in the vinegar and add this mixture to the browned potatoes.  Add steak and salt to taste.  Cook over low heat for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, and adding the peas about 3 minutes from the end, so they get warmed up but are still bright green.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.  Makes 2-3 servings.

I also made Humita en Cacerola, a creamed corn baked casserole with peppers, onion, tomatoes and cheese.  I used some of the Honey Select corn that I brought back from my dad’s farm in Virginia this summer, so of course it is delicious!  Very similar to other corn casseroles I have made, except that it seems a little more fancy with the extra vegetables.  And of course mozzarella and parmesan are a great addition to almost any dish :)



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