What to Eat in Chile
What should you eat in Chile? What are the most typical and traditional Chilean dishes? Here is the list of the Best Chilean Food & Cuisine that you should try before you die. You cannot leave Chile without eating these foods!
Written by Paula Astorga, Lawyer from the city of Santiago, Chile
12 Best Top Foods You Must Try in Chile
Empanadas Chilenas originate from the Arab gastronomy that moved later to the Spanish peninsula. Empanadas cover almost all the gastronomies of Latin America, nevertheless in Chile we have some delicious specialities like Empanada of Pebre (The pebre must be spoonful, so as not to lose its essence of sauce made of onion, cilantro, garlic, oil, salt and hot pepper. Pebre can be a dish on its own when served in a bowl in the center of the table) or Emapanada of Pine (finely chopped onion, with meat, egg and raisins).
Pastel de Choclo / Corn Cake
Pastel de Choclo, corn cake, is the most popular Chilean homemade food. It is stuffed with beef, onions, a piece of chicken, an olive and a quarter of hard-boiled egg, to be finally covered with a tender corn husk. ("Choclo" is Andean Spanish for corn cob, from the Quechuan 'chocollo'.) It is always found in Chilean restaurants and it's a must have during the 18th of September, Chilean independence day.
The Humitas are one of the oldest Chilean dishes. They emerged from the abundance of corn in the summer. They have a lot of flavor in a natural container (using the same leaves of the cob) to wrap the pulp of corn, onion, garlic and basil. The humita could be served with powdered sugar or, with freshly cut tomato from the bush. Truly delicious.
Sopaipillas are very popular and widespread from north to south of Chile. These fried masses are made up of wheat flour, lard, and cooked pumpkin (zapallo cocido) and are very usual to be eaten when it rains. It's a very common street food dish, you will find it at street vendors waiting at the exit of bus terminals and in the busiest corners of any city.
Charquicán is a traditional stew composed of dehydrated meat, with pumpkin, pea, corn, carrot and potatoes. Its name seems to originate from Quechua charquikanka, which means' jumble or stew with charqui. The name would refer to the disgust that originally produced to the Spanish conquistadores the charqui, which they considered raw meat despite being dehydrated :D
Chorrillana is a delicious caloric bomb, there is no other way to describe it, and it's considered a national emblematic dish here in chile. Its ingredients are as simple as convincing, potato chips, fried onions, sausage, chopped beef and fried eggs on top. This dish is too much for one person, so it is always shared among friends, usually with a cold lager beer. Sharing is caring :P
The Completo Italiano is the most famous fast food dish in Chile. It's the typical hot dog but with many extras. It consists of bread, sausage, chucrute (yes, the typical German cabbage conserve), chopped tomato and avocado, coated with mayonnaise.
Pisco Sour is a cocktail prepared with pisco (grape brandy) and lemon juice. Peru and Chile debate that pisco sour is their national or typical cocktail, and each affirms exclusive ownership. It is included in the cuisines of Peru and Chile, prepared with a different recipe respectively, and with some variations in the rest of its basic ingredients. You will find out if you are drinking Chilean Pisco Sour because it's prepared with with sugar flower and with Pisco from Chile.
Mote con Huesillos
Mote con Huesillos is a typical drink made of caramelized juice, with a mote of wheat and dehydrated peaches, called huesillos. The Mote con Huesillos is taken since colonial times, almost frozen, during the summer mid-afternoons. Any good Chilean knows how to calm hunger, thirst and heat buying Mote con Huesillos because they are sweet and very cold, they are just delightful!
Chilenito or Alfajor Chileno
Chilenito, also known as "Alfajor Chileno" is a typical Chilean sweet made up of two thin leaves of flour glued with manjar (dulce de leche). In its origins it was consumed for our national holidays, now its consumption occurs throughout the year. Mouthwatering :P
Curanto is a traditional indigenous preparation typical of Chiloé. The original is the so-called "curanto en hoyo", since it is cooked inside a hole. A hole is dug, stones are introduced and a bonfire is made. Then the ingredients are introduced, which are usually potatoes, sausages, pork, beef, clams and mussels. Then we cover it with nalca leaves and a layer of earth, and let it cook. All a gastronomic monument.
Cuchuflí is a typical Chilean sweet. It is made of a spongy mass (not fried) of cylindrical shape and filled with manjar (delicacy or dulce de leche). The cuchuflíes can be bought in the streets and sweet shops of Chile. The entertaining cakes of cuchuflíes are very common and especially made for children's birthdays. Gather approximately a hundred of cuchuflíes, affirm them with a ribbon and decorate the cake with different sweets or sweets.
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Did we miss any good dish? Let us know in the comments!