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Latin American Recipes

Colombian Milhojas: Custard Puff Pastry with Whipping Cream

Milhojas aus Kolumbien

Sometimes there are recipes that are particularly dear to me. These milhojas from Colombia are one of those. Reason for posting this recipe is the fact that we managed to eat milhojas when we were in Spain. Among the many delicious things I am still dreaming about are these milhojas. Milhojas consist of puff pastry, which is filled with vanilla custard, whipping cream and dulce de leche. Below you will see a picture of the milhojas we ate in the bakery Panetteria de Tirso in Madrid, Spain:

milhojas aus der pannetteria de Tirso Continue Reading…

Uruguay’s Version of a Peach Layer Cake (postre chajá)

Uruguays Version einer Pfirsichtorte (postre chajá)

It’s time for a peach layer cake, one from my country of origin Uruguay. This cake was actually invented in my home town Paysandú. Postre chajá is a peach layer cake that is named after a bird called chajá (in English it is called southern screamer, the Spanish tries to imitate the loud screams it produces). Below you see a picture of this bird. Why the cake got this name and why it is extremely delicious, I will explain in this blog entry.

The bird called chajá as is common in Uruguay

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Milo Cookies

Milo cookies

Chances are that you have not heard of Milo, let alone Milo cookies. Milo is a malt and chocolate powder, usually disolved in milk. It is famous in Australia, New Zealand, some parts of Asia and Colombia. I got to learn about its existence when I first visited Colombia and have come to love this refreshing drink. You can either serve it hot as in a hot chocolate or you can serve it cold. I especially like the cold version. I figured the powder would also taste good in cookies, so I decided to try Milo cookies. If you don’t have it at hand, relax, you can also use a mix of malt powder and chocolate powder. You may also try Ovaltine, the Swiss version, which is slightly different in taste as the malt percentage is much higher, but also tastes great in cookies.  Milo cookies Continue Reading…

Chipa: Paraguay’s Take on Cheese Bread (gluten free)

chipa from Paraguay

Today I am introducing you to a Latin American speciality: chipa. Chipas are Paraguay’s take on cheese bread and it is naturally gluten free as it is prepared with manioc/tapioca/cassava flour. I know that it is probably not that easy for you to get your hands on this flour, but I can only encourage you to look for it, this bread is so delicious and can also be easily prepared as an appetizer, snack, or party food. If you have any Asian or Latin American store close-by, be sure to check it out, they usually do carry this flour.chipa from Paraguay Continue Reading…

Alfajores: The Best Cookies from Uruguay

alfajores

OK, yes, I am watching the world championship of soccer. That’s because my birth country Uruguay made it to the quarter finals, beating the former winner of the European cup Portugal, yay! For that reason I felt like making alfajores, these are the best cookies from Uruguay. Originally alfajores are from Spain. Don’t ask me how they are made in Spain. All I know is that the Uruguayan version is always a sandwich cookie, similar to sugar cookies. These cookies, however, are a little bit drier and crumblier. That’s because they are filled with dulce de leche, caramel made from sweetened milk. The dry cookie balances out the sweet dulce de leche nicely. Since I am a chocoholic, I had to go with the chocolate version, which means that the sandwich cookies are dunked in chocolate. How can this not be good?alfajoresAlfajores can be found everywhere in Uruguay and Argentina. You will find them in school lunchboxes as well as a sought-after souvenir in airports. What I like about my version is that you can easily keep them for weeks as the chocolate serves as a protective layer. However, I do hope that your cookies will not last as long. At least mine were gone within minutes when I made them.

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From Colombia: Meringue on Top of Berries

Baisertraum auf Beeren merengon

I love meringue. I got to love meringue at a very late stage. Maybe because I feel meringue doesn’t play a very important role in the baking industry. But even though it was late love, this meringue topped off with berries and whipped cream is a fairy dream. Easy to prepare (can be prepared easily in advance), wonderful to look at and once you take the first bite, you will be in heaven, melts in your mouth and has a nice tangy aftertaste due to the berries. Really a fairy dream!

Baisertraum auf Beeren merengon Continue Reading…

Colombian Corn Bread with Cheese Filling (arepa boyacense)

Colombian corn bread arepa boyacense

I had the opportunity to travel to the home country of my husband: Colombia and I feel in love with arepa boyacense. Let me tell you, this country has so much more to offer than only jungle. The mountain range the Andes come to mind, but it also has savannahs, a dessert, the Caribbean and the famous coffee region. The diversity of species is something to admire. Colombia has more than 100 (!) humming birds only. Even in the capital Bogotá with more than 10 million inhabitants you will encounter humming birds amazing you with their acrobatic movements. The variety of fruits is also astonishing. I ate fruits I had never seen or even heard of. For a penny you will get the juiciest and and sweetest fruits. The pictures I took barely capture the beauty of this country.

Colombia is a very colorful country. Maybe the huge variety of species and a general carefree attitude towards life are reasons why food is extremely important. One of the first questions I was asked during our holiday was how I liked the food. Yes, we had to explain what our travel plans were, but soon after that the conversation turned to food, inevitably. I usually replied with arepa! Arepas are as important to Colombians as bread is to Germans. Arepas are a simple corn bread and usually either fried, grilled or baked in the oven. They are served for breakfast, but you will also encounter them for lunch and dinner. Arepas come in all sizes, they are gluten free as they are made of corn flour and each region has its own variety.

Colombian corn bread arepa boyacense

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Torta de Fiambre – Uruguay’s take on deep-dish pizza

torta de fiambre

Pizza! Deep-dish pizza from Uruguay! I bet you have never tried this or even heard of it before. Let me introduce you to the gourmet-style version of the torta de fiambre (ham and cheese pie), which is famous in Uruguay and usually consists of ham and cheese layered between an empanada-style of dough. Think of lots of melted cheese, usually at least two different types, good-quality ham and some flaky empanada dough.  That’s the basic recipe. But I am going to add some more ingredients and make it gourmet-style, I will go crazy and add eggs, tomatos, and a seasoning called chimichurri. Did I get you? I hope I did because I am taking part in the “You had me at pizza!” blog event (in German) organized by Marc with the wonderful bilingual blog Bake to the Roots (English and German).

you had me at pizza flyer

I am really excited I get to introduce you to a Uruguayan dish, I bet none of my readers have tried anything from the country I was born in. Uruguayan cuisine is very much influenced by the Spanish and Italian cuisine. On top of that I hope you know that beef, beef, and beef again is what Uruguay exports the most. Did you know that Uruguay has four times more cows in the country than actually people? If you are a vegetarian or even vegan, you will have a hard time in Uruguay. Meat can be found in abundance.

torta de fiambre

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