Project U – Parte Uno

It’s been almost a week since we set sail to South-America, we have discovered half of Buenos Aires and we are already on the road again…I mean on the water. We are headed to Uruguay where my friend Andrea is getting married next Saturday. A real South-American wedding with Colombian, Uruguayan and international guests will participate and we cannot wait. Till then we are going to Colonia del Sacramento, probably Punta del Este and of course Montevideo.

What happened in the last week? Buenos Aires showed us its whole personality:  beautiful cast iron balconies and gates, once glamorous palaces, great parks, the world’s widest avenue, the world’s longest road, el Obelisco, Evita, kids playing soccer in the park, Hungarian Boy Scouts, biking thief (I used to have a phone, now I don’t, but the point is we are OK, no harm, it’s just stuff, etc, we have everything else, so no worries!)

Anyways, this would not be a cake blog if I wasn’t writing about the local specialties we tasted here. First of all, I have to warn all visitors that the downtown area has no bakeries (or they hide it so well we weren’t able to find them) Supermarkets are also missing except for tiny shops where they tried to blow us off with extra money. However there are many parillas, where steak is abundant and delicious.

We saw many Starbucks and McD’s so no one starves to death – although we tried to avoid these. In the meantime, empenadas are everywhere – at the street kiosk, at the hamburger stand, at the parilla, at the pizzeria and at the empanada shop. And it’s absolutely great! We have come to the conclusion that here they make them to use up all the leftover meat, and they mastered this. We had ones with meat, ham and cheese, spinach, corn and chicken. We tasted ones that were baked and some that were fried. They are big! Much bigger than the ones I tried to make at home, and their dough is something really special, so I’ll need to experiment more at home.

On the sweet side the medialunas (half moons), the sweet croissants are the big surprise. Their ultra light yeast-dough is beautiful and delicious.

Of course we couldn’t resist the world famous dulce de leche which is pretty much poured onto and into everything. This silky milk jam is smooth and delicious. It is as good in a crepe or alfajor as it is great for ice cream flavor. We had dulce de leche ice cream with orange chocolate ice cream and it was heaven to my taste buds.

They say that South-America’s best bakers live in Uruguay, so if it’s half true, I’m glad that airlines weight limits are only for checked-in luggage….

To be continued…

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