September 14, 2010

ChivitOH MY GOD

Uruguay. One of the more interesting places we never think of. Not like you wake up in the morning and go "Hmmm... Uruguay" or anything. Looking in on the place it is, apparently, a Spanish American culture with, according to the books, an overlay of Italian influence here and there. It has one of the higher standards of living in all of South America, a bustling economy, and thrives on almost 100% literacy. And it doesn't have the Tea Party, Sarah Palin, Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, or the Republican Party. Which is probably a direct result of all that literacy. Plus maybe a lack of trailer parks. That right there is a good enough recommendation. But - and here's the thing - there is also FOOD!

The other night I manufactured (because words like "cooked" or "made" just aren't adequate) what looks like the national dish. You Bourdain fans watched Tony power down on one of these in a street side cafe. There are varying ways to make it but I grabbed the basic parts from here. You be the judge, I think mine looks amazingly similar. Here's the construction basics.

Oh... vegetarians? You may want to hide from here on. The books say Uruguay is noted for an abundance of MEAT in the diet. And this baby is no exception, but rather the rule.

From left to right... You put a couple of strips of bacon in a pan. I know, with microwaves nobody does this anymore. But you're going to need the resultant grease that the bacon is going to shed. Ahem. Fry it up, set aside. Take a piece of filet mignon (they didn't have, so I bought some "sandwich steak" and marinaded it overnight. It's an "okay" substitution) - only about 1/4" thick - and brown it up in the bacon grease. With me so far? the third picture is the bun. You need a big one, round if possible, and check this - you need the filet to end up roughly the size of said bun.

The bun is toasted and we then compound the cholesterol by spreading mayonaise on both slices. Yes that's what he said. You put the filet (see I bought mine too big and had to cut it in half... slovenly kitchen skills I know) right on the mayo'd bottom half of the bun. On top of the filet - because we don't have enough meat yet - we pile on some Black Forest Ham. Make sure it is "black forest" style and not boiled or whatever. Get it from the deli, specifically.

Oh hello what's this on top of the black forest ham? Why it's a thick slice of mild provolone! Gee, that'll give it a little heft because, you know, so far it's kinda puny. Ahem. Oh wait - what's in this picture next to the provolone one? Why it's an egg fried "sunny side up" put right on top of the cheese. The recipe says YOU WANT THE YOLK STILL LIQUID ENOUGH TO RUN. You'll see why later. And then - oh yeah - don't forget the bacon.

In an effort to mollify the heart problems you will encounter about half way through this we begin the roughage contingent. Lettuce! Finally! And then a couple slices of tomato (luckily I have a lot of these next to that head growing in my garden). This is topped off with some raw Spanish onion. It gets pretty high right here, so you put the top part of the bun on all this and smush...

So that the yolk runs down the side and melds everything together kind of like a glue. I guess. You can't eat this like that though, you've got to cut it in half. Here's my proudest part because it kinda looks just like the picture in the recipe. Notice the yolk residue there. Yeah well in Uruguay you add a mess of fries covered in pepper to hide it. Kinda neat the way our plates match the table and chair set no? We were pretty proud of that. Add some South American red and you've got something as authentic to Uruguay as you can get. But there's nothing "ito" about a chivito. Just sayin'. I did not need breakfast this morning.

Seriously.

Enjoy that heart attack!

Ow....

7 comments:

sybil law said...

Oh my GAH yummmmm....

Besides - eating that would probably guarantee that I wouldn't get hungry again for the rest of the day! Yum!

B.E. Earl said...

That's my kind of sammich.

Brian said...

The ridiculously meat-laden sandwich is a recurring theme through much of Latin America, I think (generally called "tortas" in Mexico and elsewhere). I think that's the first version I've seen with steak, though.

And now I have to go eat the puny ham&cheddar on whole wheat I packed for lunch...(sigh)...

Gino said...

i've had something quite similar several times, from an argentine place in anaheim.( - the bacon)

totally awesomely really really good.

comes with a side of olive oil herb type mixture for drizzling.

the telera or billilo roll is most appropriate, as well. seems to work the best.

SK Waller said...

Yours looks SO much better than the one on the web page.

B.E. Earl said...

Gia is going away for the weekend, and now I know how I'm gonna be spending part of it. :)

RW said...

Earl - please review & let me know. I think this was SERIOUSLY awesome.