Sunday, December 11, 2005

Field Trip

R Raisinhater and I decided yesterday was the perfect day for a lunchtime food adventure. We met in Jackson Heights – international food capital of the world. In a four block radius you see dozens of Indian buffets, falafel, tacos, even…

But we were yearning for meats, so we headed over to La Porteña for an asado.

I love the cheesy Argentine decor at La Porteña. Saddles and spurs on the walls, gaucho waiters with neckerchiefs, signed photos of argentine sports heros, even a signed photo of The Donald. Tango plays in the background and the service is quite good, the waiters always manage to turn up just when you need something.

First, we had some empanadas (or, as they call it, gaucho pie). They were deliciously moist (unlike mine, which often get a bit too dry in the middle) and, my favorite, provoleta.

Provoleta is a plate of melted provolone cheese, seasoned with herbs and salt, with a crispy brown underside. We sliced it into wedges and stuffed them in our mouths! With a glass or two of wine and some chocolate for dessert, provoleta is the single woman’s ideal dinner.

But my brother and I were nowhere near done – there was parilla was on the way. We sipped our wine and sat up straight, trying to encourage digestion and make space for the meats. We were perhaps a little bit intimidated when it arrived.

Why did we order parilla for two! One serving would have been enough to feed the two of us and the family two tables over. We got skirt steak, sweetbreads, chorizo, morcilla (blood sausage, my favorite!), and short ribs, all served with chimichurri sauce.

Afterwards, we were so meat-drunk we had to go back to R’s house and sloth on the couch, drinking beer and playing scrabble. We were joined by R’s fantastically portly feline, Norman, who entertained us all by trying to stuff himself into a little wicker basket.


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