This bento is one of my favorites so far – mostly because the little one came home and exclaimed – “Oh wow! What a beautiful bento!” This has all the classics from Argentina – empanadas, grilled chicken with chimichurri, alfajores made with home-made dulce de leche and a salad with hearts of palm. Stacie and I had a super fun morning cooking together and whipped all of this up together in a few hours. We will be sharing all the recipes in upcoming posts, and below are two to get you started.
Looking forward to our upcoming bento projects!
Chimichurri – from Simply Recipes
Chimichurri is such a versatile and delicious condiment that it brightens up any simple grilled meat/fish. It’s a great thing to have lying on the fridge on any given day, not just when you are dabbling in the cuisine of Argentina. I particularly like this version, as it is super-easy to whip up and I like the chunkiness of it. The variations on the chimichurri recipe are endless and as you make it more often, you can tweak it to suit your liking. It also works beautifully as a marinade, though we have been (liberally) using it as a condiment.
- 1 cup firmly packed fresh flat-leaf parsley, trimmed of thick stems
- 3-4 garlic cloves
- 2 Tbsps fresh oregano leaves (can also use 2 teaspoons dried oregano)
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 2 Tbsp red or white wine vinegar
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
1. Finely chop the parsley, fresh oregano, and garlic (or process in a food processor several pulses). Place in a small bowl.
2. Stir in the olive oil, vinegar, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes. Adjust seasonings.
Serve immediately or refrigerate. If chilled, return to room temperature before serving.
Hearts of Palm and Avocado Salad – from Recipe Girl
This is a simple, but unique salad due to the addition of hearts of palm (available canned). It is a vegetable harvested from the inner core and growing bud of certain palm trees and is a common component of Latin American dishes.
2 large heads red leaf lettuce (tear with hands into bite-size pieces)
2 grapefruit, peeled & segmented (cut segments in half if they’re big)
2 (14 ounce) cans hearts of palm, drained & cut into 1/2-inch slices
4 avocados, peeled & chopped (don’t chop until ready to serve)
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
3 Tablespoons white wine vinegar
1. Prepare salad: Place lettuce, grapefruit and hearts of palm in a large salad bowl. Cover and chill until ready to serve.
2. Prepare dressing: Combine seasonings, oil and vinegar. Shake or stir thoroughly, and chill until ready to serve.
3. When ready to serve, cut avocados and add to the bowl. Drizzle desired amount of dressing over all and toss lightly.