The next sound you hear will be the banging of my head against the wall and my moan of frustration. I’ve never been so genuine in saying TGIF!
Okay, it’s not that bad. Actually, I’ve got some great news and some not so great news. The great news is that I got all of my issues resolved with hosting and yada yada. Oh my goodness, I hope that I never have to do that again. Thank God that I have an awesome father with computer wisdom far superior to my own, otherwise it may have been curtains for Gringalicious because the stuff that happens through the back door of a blog just makes me feel like a complete idiot sometimes. There were a few moments where I almost lost my cool and had a complete breakdown. Thank you guys for being patient with me to get everything worked out.
The bad news? Only that the stuff I was working on while my blog was in transition (no not transition into a vampire you guys, sillies, to a new web host), it’s gone. Okay, so I might be able to retrieve it if I were a tech genius but I really don’t have the energy after getting things back to normal. I definitely don’t want to risk messing anything up so I just have about of weeks worth of redoing stuff. On the bright side though, I’m still going to post everything I was working on. I still have all of my pictures and stuff so that’s good right?
I don’t think this week liked me very much, seriously. For one thing, I seemed to be burning, cutting, and otherwise hurting myself way more than usual. Obviously, the occasional owy is going to happen when you handle boiling and sharp objects all day but this was ridiculous. Then, there was the whole techy issues, and then, to top it all off I started getting all of the hateful comments from people on this post.
Apparently I’ve now offended all of Asian culture. Have you guys ever heard that you aren’t allowed to have your chopsticks straight up? They say it’s because it resembles the way they burn incense to the dead and it makes people uncomfortable. Come on, how was I supposed to know that? I really wanted to respond and say “Sorry, I was sick the day they taught buddhist chopsticks etiquette in my small town Tennessee Christian school.” but I restrained myself and didn’t. Actually that’s part of what got lost in translation, the last few days worth of comments, so I couldn’t even respond if I wanted to.
Oh, and did you hear about the earthquakes in Santiago? I can’t believe this but we didn’t feel a thing down here even though we aren’t that far. However I did have some friends that were in the Santiago airport and they said it was so crazy that they had to hold onto the pillars and people were freaking out. It was a big one but I think I heard there were only 10 reported dead. That is horrible I know, but considering the scale of it I think we should all be thankful it wasn’t way more.
Okay, but onto happier thoughts, like food. And speaking of different cultures, today happens to be Fiestas Patrias, Chile’s Independence Day. I know, it seems like we just talked about it last year over an empanada right? It’s such a big deal here so everything is closed and the whole country is having their fiestas and early springtime asados (basically a grill-out)! I’m hoping the weather is nice all day so we can eat outside and enjoy the day. Although, I’ll probably be working on blog stuff whenever I get a few minutes because I’ve gotta catch up.
I thought I’d join in the festivities just a little and make another traditional Chilean recipe to share with you guys. I rarely make Chilean stuff because that’s already what’s available here and what I’m always trying to do is recreate US style food. Today I’m gonna be more Chilean than gringa though. I made Pastel de Choclo, which is very similar to what would happen if a shepard’s pie married a tamale and had a kid. It’s very Chilean with all of the typical ingredients, raisins, olives, hardboiled eggs, and oregano.
I included nearly everything in mine because I wanted it to be as authentic as possible, but I couldn’t bring myself to add the olives. Personally, I love olives, but they don’t usually pit them here and adding them would have meant no one in my family would eat the finished product, so I nixed em. Feel free to add them if they’re your thing. I also skipped the beef just because I didn’t have any on hand and I was already adding chicken, but they usually add both to this dish. Oh, and I didn’t do this, but it’s typically served with a dusting of powdered sugar on top. They really like things sweet, these Chileans. Like at the movies, you can’t get salty popcorn, they only sell sweet. It’s weird
So I hope you’re down with eating some Chilean food today with me because I’m celebrating 2 things, the the fact that my blog is back to working order and saying happy independence day to Chile at the same time. Viva Chile!
- 3 medium carrots, chopped
- 1 large red bell pepper, sedded and chopped
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 1/2 cups chicken stock
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- 1 teaspoon parsley
- 1/2 teaspoon merken (or paprika)
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- salt & pepper to taste
- 2 cups cooked chicken breast
- 4 hard-boiled eggs, peeled and sliced thinly
- 1/2 cup pitted kalamata olives, roughly chopped (optional)
- 1/2 cup golden raisins (optional)
- 4 1/2 cups sweet whole kernel corn
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1/2 cup whole milk
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1/4 cup fresh basil leaves
- powdered sugar for topping (optional)
- Grease a 13x9 inch glass pan or 6 to 8 ramekins with oil and set aside. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium high heat and add carrots, bell peppers, onion, and garlic. Cook for 7 to 8 minutes until carrots begin to soften. Add chicken stock and seasonings (bay leaves, oregano, parsley, merken, cumin, salt, and pepper) and cover with lid. Cook covered, stirring occasionally for about 20 minutes. Add chicken and raisins and/or olives (if using). Remove from heat and pour contents of pan into prepared glass pan (or ramekins). Lay egg slices over top evenly and set pan aside while you make the topping.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 C) and combine the ingredients for corn topping in a medium saucepan or skillet. Bring mixture to a boil over medium high heat and cook for 8 to 10 minutes, stirring gently. Cool mixture for about 10 minutes then pour into a food processor or blender and pulse until almost smooth with just a bit of texture left. Pour mixture over filling in pan and smooth into an even layer.
- Bake for 20 to 30 minutes until edges are bubbly and top starts to brown. Serve hot