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Cooking For Fun

Argentine Meat & Main Dishes

Argentine Marinade
Courtesy of Iara <>

1/2 ts Saffron threads
1/2 c Virgin olive oil (1 20ml)
1/2 c White wine vinegar (1 20 ml)
1 Spanish onion, diced
2 Garlic cloves, pressed
1/4 c Parsley, chopped
1 ts Thyme
1 tb Lemon juice
Salt & pepper

An Argentine asado or barbecue is not authentic without this delicious marinade called chimichuri. It is similar to a multi spiced vinaigrette and is given an earthier tone with the addition of saffron. I serve this with poultry or shellfish and brush it on op of garlic bread before toasting.

Powder threads and steep in lemon juice for 20 minutes.  Combine all ingredients with whisk and store in covered jar.

Jugosas Empanadas Criollas Argentinas
(Juicy Argentine Creole Empanadas)
Courtesy of Iara <

Special Note: The key point of this recipe is the so called "grasa de pella". It is a liquid fat obtained by melting in a skillet pieces of veal fat you can ask to your butcher. They discard these pieces of fat after trimming the meat for steaks. At the end of process, filter the liquid fat through a tea colander to eliminate solids. Producing the ingredient in this way instead of purchasing it, guarantees the homemade taste and avoids unpleasant surprises.

1 Kg. or 2 pounds of white flour
1 egg, salt, water
250 g. or 1/2 pound of "grasa de pella"

Combine flour and salt in a bowl. Pour in the tepid liquid "grasa de pella", the entire egg and water until reasonable well combined. Turn out on a floured surface and knead until smooth. Leave 15 minutes to rest covered with a moisted cloth. Roll on the dough with a knead-stick stretching until 3 milimeters thick. Cut circles aproximately 5 inches in diameter.

2 pounds of veal beef, tenderloin in preference, in slices 5 milimeters thick

With a sharp knife cut it in small cubes 5 milimeters wide. It can be used minced meat from the butcher but this is not the right "criollo" way.

2 large onions minced well chopped
2 tablespoons of paprika
1 tablespoon of dried crushed red pepper (flakes)
2 cups filled of "grasa de pella", salt

Heat the two large cups of "grasa de pella" in a saucepan until liquid. Saute in it the chopped onion until soft but not brown. Retire from heat and add the chopped meat, paprika, crushed red pepper and salt to taste. Turn for mixing very well. Let the filling become cold and then refrigerate until it solidifies. This is the secret for juicy empanadas.

Final Setup: Place a portion of filling in the center of each circle of dough and add a green olive without core. Lightly brush the edges with water and fold the dough over the filling.
Crimp the edges securely by pressing them with a fork or make overlaped small folds along the line of union of  the edges as a sort of seam called "repulgue". Make sure it remains securely closed.

To bake: Preheat the oven to 375°F(180°C). Arrange the empanadas on a buttered
cookie sheet. Brush the tops lightly with egg yolk or butter and bake until light brown.(aprox. 15 minutes)

To saute: Heat enough oil to cover the empanadas in a saucepan over high heat. When very hot,sink the empanadas until light brown. (aprox. 5 minutes) Verify the temperature of oil. It must be very hot. Throw a small piece of bread into the pan to check it. The bread will be surrounded by bubbles when oil is ready.

In both ways of cooking wait 15 minutes before eating. The filling has a high thermal inertia and burning your tongue will not help to enjoy this delicious typical Argentine meal.

(Flank Steak)
Courtesy of Iara <>

1 large Flank steak -- butterflied
1/4 cup Red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon Garlic -- finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon Thyme -- dried
1 bn Spinach
2 Carrots, peeled -- cut in lengthwise
2 Eggs, hard-cooked -- cut in lengthwise
1 medium Onion -- thin sliced and into rings
2 tablespoons Parsley -- finely chopped
1/2  teaspoon Red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon Sea salt
2 tablespoons Vegetable oil
2 cups to 3 cup beef broth

Place the meat in a glass dish. Mix together the vinegar, garlic and thyme. Pour over the meat and let marinate for 1 or 2 hours at room temperature. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Wash the spinach under cold running water; drain and trim off the stems.
Spread the leaves evenly over the meat. Lay the carrots, in rows, across the grain of the meat. Place the egg quarters between the rows of carrots. Scatter the onion rings over the eggs and carrots, then sprinkle the parsley, red pepper flakes and salt over all. Carefully roll up the meat with the grain, jellyroll fashion. Secure with toothpicks and lace up with
string. Or tie with string at 1-inch intervals. Heat the oil in a dutch oven. Add the meat and brown well on all sides. Add the stock, cover tightly, and bake for 1 hour. Remove the matambre from the pan to a board and let rest for 10 minutes. Using a sharp knife, remove the strings and cut the roll into 1/4 inch slices. Arrange on a heated platter and moisten with a little of the cooking broth. To serve cold: In Argentina, the matambre is poached, then removed from the pot and pressed under weights until the juices drain off. It is refrigerated until chilled, then served as a hors d'oeuvre, cut into thin slices.

Argentinian Stew in a Pumpkin Shell
Serves 6
Courtesy of Iara <>

2 pound Beef stew meat - cut in 1 1/2-in. cubes
1 large Onion; chopped
2 Garlic cloves; minced
3 tablespoon Oil
2 large Tomatoes; chopped
1 large Green bell pepper; chopped
Salt, pepper
1 teaspoon Sugar
1 cup Dried apricots
3 White potatoes -  peeled and diced
3 Sweet potatoes -  peeled and diced
2 cups beef broth
1 medium Pumpkin
Butter or margarine; melted
1/4 c Dry sherry
1 can Whole kernel corn (1 lb) - drained

Trim any excess fat from beef and cook with onion and garlic in oil until meat is browned. Add tomatoes, green pepper, 1 tablespoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper, sugar, apricots, white potatoes, sweet potatoes and broth. Cover and simmer 1 hour. Meanwhile, cut top off pumpkin and discard. Scoop out seeds and stringy membrane. Brush inside of pumpkin with butter and sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper. Stir sherry and corn into stew and spoon into pumpkin shell. Place shell in shallow pan and bake at 325F 1 hour, or until pumpkin meat is tender. Place pumpkin in large bowl and ladle out stew, scooping out some of pumpkin with each stew serving.

Puchero de Gallina (Chicken stew)

1 pounds chicken
1/4 pound garbanzo beans
3 green onions
2 leeks
2 carrots
1 bouquet of aromatic herbs (parsley, cilantro, etc.)
1 bay leaf
1 clove garlic
2 turnips
1 small cabbage head
3 corns in the cob
4 medium potatoes
4 sweet potatoes
1/2 pound yellow squash
4 chorizos (it's a spicy sausage for BBQ)
2 cups uncooked rice.

In a large saucepan, boil salted water, put into it the whole chicken and let it boil. A younger chicken cooks better. Take of the froth off and add the garbanzo beans, soaked the night before and packed in a soft cloth. Always boiling. Add the green onions, leeks, carrot, bay leaf, garlic, turnips and the herbs. Let it all cook well. An hour before serving, add the cabbage, corn and sweet potatoes, a little after the potatoes, squash and chorizo, and 1/4 hour before serving, add rice.

How to eat it:
First, eat the soup with rice. Then in another plate eat the meat and vegetables. Nice for a cold day, stuffs you, so be careful.


2 Tbsp shortening
1 Tbsp butter
3 big onions grated
1/2 kg minced meat
1 Tbsp minced parsley
1 sweet paprika
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp cumin
100 gr rasins
100 gr green olives
1 tsp flour
3 hard boiled eggs
1/2 Tbsp butter

1 kg flour
100 gr butter
2 egg yolks
1 Tbsp sugar
1 Tbsp shortening
1 cup milk
oil for deep frying


Fry the onion in shortening and butter, only to soften it, not brown. Add minced meat mixed with water and salt, mix and don't let it fully cook, add parsley, paprika, sugar, cumin, raisins, boneless olives, flour and put off the heat. It must be very juicy. Mix the hard cooked eggs sliced and the butter, and let cool.

Meantime, prepare the dough. Put the flour on the table, make a hole. Inside put the butter, egg yolks, sugar and shortening, and mix together and with milk and a little salt. Knead the dough throughly. Roll the dough, stretching until 3 millimeters thin. Cut it in circles, about 10 centimeters diameter. Fill each circle with a little filling in the center, lightly brush the edges with a little water, fold the empanadas over the filling and press well the borders with a fork to seal or better, make little overlaped folds along the line of union of the edges as sort of seam, called "repulgo". Deep fry the empanadas and dry on paper towels, then sprinkle a little sugar over them.

If you prefer, you may oven bake the empanadas, it's very good also.

Yield: 24 empanadas

Ricota and Spinach Filling for Empanadas

1 onion -- chopped
25 g margarine
2 c spinach leaves -- cooked and drained
150 g ricotta cheese, part skim milk
2 eggs
salt -- to taste
grated cheese -- to taste
nutmeg -- to taste
18 empanadas rounds

Sautee onion in margarine. Add spinach and sautee together. Mix the ricotta cheese and grated cheese, one raw egg and another egg hardboiled and chopped. Add salt, pepper and nutmeg to taste. Proceed to fill the empanadas as explained in the meat ones. Only that those you bake.


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