Area: Over 750,000 sq km; 38th largest in the world
Slightly smaller than twice the size of Montana
Religion: 70% Roman Catholic
Population: Almost 17 million; 59th largest in the world
Today, Chile is one of South America's most stable and prosperous nations and a recognized middle power. It leads Latin American nations in human development, competitiveness, income per capita, globalization, economic freedom, low perception of corruption and state of peace. It also ranks high regionally in freedom of the press and democratic development. - WikipediaSource: CIA Factbook
What a change after the African countries we have been doing the last few weeks. It is nice. I did a report on Chile in grade school, which meant that clearly I was already an expert. All I needed was to find out some recipes. So many countries don't have a national dish to speak of. Sorry, "...of which to speak." Chile, on the other hand, apparently has many. Every website I found that claimed it knew the national dish listed something different. Guess I'll have to make a decision!
It didn't take very long. I quickly ran across this recipe for pastel de choclo. At least one site had this listed as the national dish, and it seemed easy to follow and delicious. Early success! As a bonus, I generally have most of those things on hand.
I always feel good about a recipe that requires me to get out multiple spices. Yay.
|I finally actually found cumin seed!|
Chicken stock > water, so I went with that. It was all starting to smell very good and I was getting excited. Time to process some corn! Cornmeal +cornstarch + corn + sugar in my food processor. I was worried about the non-specific amount of milk I was going to have to add, but it ended up working out pretty well. It easily made a thick batter.
|It didn't take long to get to this point. 45 seconds to a minute, perhaps?|
Not very shockingly, at this point our kitchen smelled like corn. I had to thicken the corn puree on the stove with some butter. Overall, the steps were quite easy. Not really much to write about.
Kevin always has to do my volume estimates, because I am pretty horrible at it. This may be one of the few times that we think he didn't get it right. Probably could have used the smaller casserole pan.
|Plus sugar on the top.|
|Ugh, I still need to figure out this camera.|
And...bake! It leaves some time to play with the cats.
|It was a little greasy.|
|Ugh, messy table. But yay home brew!|
I gave a little to Kevin as leftovers recently. He said after three bites he was sugared out. Yes, he had already had a cookie (grumble, grumble), but this is the boy who can subsist on Thin Mints alone. If he was sugared out there is a severe problem.
I don't think this is as much of a recipe problem as an ingredient problem. If you find different corn or omit the sugar, I think you could get a whole different dish. It smelled great and all of the separate parts are good, so I think this one deserves another chance. Someone should try it without the sugar!
Everyone get ready, because....
Next time: China