|Mote con huesillo, a local Kunstmann beer and pastel de jaiba at a big fair of local food in Niebla, near Valdivia|
Chile has a number of traditional dishes, dishes that are seen throughout the country. Chilean food isn't all that exciting. In most restaurants, there was no salt shaker on the table, nor will you find a pepper shaker or grinder! So, the food is a bit blah. I'm not saying it's bad. It's just rather homogeneous and plain.
What will you see? If it's summer, you definitely see mote con huesillo sold everywhere. It's a drink. It's a snack. It's both things in one. It's a refreshingly cold glass of peach or apricot juice, with a scoop of cooked pearled barley and a re-hydrated dried peach. It's quite good. Other popular drinks are wine, of course, as Chile makes barrels of the stuff (it's well-made and inexpensive), and beer. In Valdivia, you can visit the Kunstmann brewery, one of the bigger local brewers, or just down the road, the Valtor microbrew restaurant. But, the best beer is made by my husband's cousin, Carlos. Very small production - he brews it in his garage - but if you are in Puerto Varas, a few restaurants carry it. It's called Cerveza Lauzirica. He makes a lager and a red ale, both delicious.
|Pastel de choclo, a la cousin Marie-Elena|
|New Year's Eve dinner. It would be many hours before we ate. But, there was plenty of delicious wine in the meantime!|
|Serving up the paella|
|Chilean tortillas with a homemade berry kuchen in the background|
|Cousin Andrea's homemade whole-grain German sourdough|
|Beautiful Peruvian pulled pork with rice and a fried egg|