Tag Archives: olives

Anchovy Pasta and Herbed Flatbread

Hola hola,

Espero que todos esten bien.

Santiago is absolutely beautiful right now. After a short week of teaching post Fiestas Patrias, I decided to have a nice, relaxing weekend enjoy the new wave of spring weather. There was some poolside chillin’, wine sippin’ and a really fun soccer practice with the Chilean women’s team I play with earlier this morning.

Oh yeah, and cooking.

Some of my cooking adventures went better than others.

The first thing I made, earlier this week, was a pasta recipe I found on one of my favorite blogs, The Wednesday Chef. I’d been wanting to make this recipe for a while, but was a little nervous about the anchovies. I’ve never really cooked with them, but this recipe looked really tasty. HOWEVER. I’m an idiot and bought sardines, instead of anchovies. I know the difference, but at the store, I totally spaced. Turns out, it sort of works with sardines. Would I recommend it? Meh, maybe. If you like your pasta really fishy. Sardines are much bigger than anchovies. They melt, but there is still a lot of fishy excess. I thought the recipe was actually really good, even so. Still, use anchovies for this recipe.

Then on Friday night, I had a serious craving for what, I deem, an Italian dinner. Is it really Italian? No. It just involves bread, cheese, wine, and some combination of olives and roasted vegetables.

But, instead of just buying bread, I decided to try making this herbed flatbread and I found a great recipe on one of my new favorite blogs, Sunday Suppers. 

The flat bread takes about an hour to rise, but it’s very easy to make and delicious straight out of the oven, topped with a little olive oil.

I also baked some squash with brown sugar, roasted some red peppers, and put together some olives with pine nuts, olive oil, sea salt, oregano, and a little red pepper.


Well, back to the grind.



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Aji de Gallina


What a great weekend, filled with sun, cooking, and bowling. The weather is starting to really get warm around here and I love it. Last Friday we had a gringo birthday party at a bowling alley, which was really fun, and then I spent the rest of the weekend soaking up the rays and making food. Classic.

Beginning of Spring picnic with pan, palta and vino. Claro.

Feeling happy about the weather got me in the mood to try this Peruvian dish that I adore: Aji de Gallina.

It’s a bit high maintenance, but this recipe is SUPER RICO. Drool worthy. The creamy, spicy, savory sauce and shredded chicken is comfort food at it’s best. Seriously, make this. Impress all your friends.

Aji de Gallina 


2-3 peeled, boiled and sliced potatoes

3-4 hard boiled eggs, sliced

1/4 sliced black kalamata olives

3 chicken breasts

2 medium carrots, diced

2 celery stocks, diced

2 medium onions, chopped

4 cloves of garlic

1 can of condensed milk

6 slices of white sandwich bread

4 aji amarillo (orange peruvian peppers, they can be canned, in a paste, raw, whatever)

1/4 cup of walnuts, ground

1/4 cup parmesan cheese

2 chicken bouillon cubes



1/4 cup of oil


I see this dish as a two part process. I reccomend you do the first part in the morning or the evening before. It you do it all at once it can be tiresome.

PART I: boil the eggs, and set aside in ice water. Boil the potatoes (not too soft!)  and put in the fridge. Next, add the celery, carrot, and one onion to a big, deep pot with the chicken breasts and one bouillon cube. Add 4-6 cups of water and boil until the chicken is cooked through. Remove the chicken and set aside. Save the stock and veggies.


Shred the chicken and set aside.

The next step is to make the sauce. To make the sauce soak 6 slices of bread in the condensed milk. Add the soggy bread into a blender with a clove of garlic, one bouillon cube, the carrots and celery from the stock, and the aji. [My aji was raw, so I sauteed it first in a pan to get it soft. You can also buy pickled aji amarillo, or use aji amarillo paste. All fine.] Blend until smooth. If it is still very liquid, add 3 more slices of bread.

Heat up a large, deep sautee pan or pot with 1/4 cup of oil. Add the remaining chopped onion, and two gloves of garlic, minced. Once the onion is translucent, add the sauce. Stir for 5 minutes, then add the chicken. Be careful to turn the heat down because the milk in the dish can burn easily. Stir until well mixed and thick. Next, add the chopped walnut, and finally the parmesan.

Serve hot with white rice, a sliced hard boiled egg, two olives, and sliced boiled potatoes.

It would also be lovely with a nice, thin sliced cucumber salad with vinegar and sugar. I didn’t add that, but next time I will.

For dessert, I sliced up a lovely pineapple I bought at the market. The pineapple was perfect!! I watched this video which explained how to tell if a pineapple is ripe and how to cut it.

YUM. Hope everyone is having a good week!


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Pastel de Choclo

Well. Looks like I’m still here. No rapture for me. BUT I did make sure I went out and partied it up, rapture style. Rapture sounds kinda like Raptor. What’s better….a raptor party or a rapture party?

Sorry about that. I get distracted easily..

So, my tooth has improved 100 percent. I still gotta get surgery next Friday, but it’s great to able to eat real things. To celebrate, I took a crack at making Pastel de Choclo.

This recipe was a little high maintenance. The ingredients were all easy to find, and not very expensive, but there were a lot of steps involved. I get the feeling this is the sort of thing you make if you already happen to have some of this stuff pre-made lying around, but who knows.

I blatantly stole this recipe off the Food Network website. I was surprised to find very few English recipes for this dish on most of the major websites. Seems Chilean food is unexplored territory for mainstream America on the whole. There’s probably good reason for that; Chilean food isn’t exactly….um…I dunno. Special. It’s delicious, there are unique flavors, and definitely some special dishes, but it still ain’t no Italian food.

However, I found this dish really satisfying. The combination of the savory, spicy chicken, briny olives, and sweet, fluffy corn is unique and distinctly Chilean. I adapted this recipe a bit according to my whim, and definitely would do a few things different next time. The recipe called for 5 cups of chicken stock, then never said when to add it??? Anyway, it all worked out.

Pastel de Choclo


1 bag (about 3-4 cups) of frozen corn (or fresh kernals)

2 chicken breasts, poached and shredded

1/4 cup of melted butter

1/4 cup of kalamata olives (pitted)

1/2 cup of raisins

3-4 hard boiled eggs, sliced

1 cup of milk

1 onion, chopped

2 teaspoons cumin

1 teaspoon paprika

1 teaspoon of oregano



1 teaspoon of sugar

a pinch of powdered sugar

fresh basil, chopped

olive oil


Start with poaching the chicken and making the hard boiled eggs. I’d actually recommend you do this the day before to save time if possible.

Before you start, set up all your ingredients, chopped, and ready to go. This will make it much more for too cook.

Heat up the olive oil in a skillet and sauté the onions with the oregano, paprika, and cumin until translucent. Then add chicken and stir until savory. Once the mixture is nice and fragrant, add it to the bottom of a casserole dish, or if you have it, a round, heavy pan. The best would be a paila (an earthenware dish)  but beggars cant be choosers and a casserole dish is all I had.

Next, make the corn mixture. If you have fresh kernals, grate the corn with a grater. If you have frozen corn (like I did) use a food processor and grind the corn until it is like a corn paste. Next, melt the butter in a deep pan on medium high heat, and add the corn, salt, sugar, and milk. Stir the mixture until it is nice and thick. Add fresh basil.

[I had some issues with this step. My mixture just would not thicken. I finally had to add some flour to get it right….anyone know what happened? Do I need cornstarch?]

Now the fun part. Arranged sliced egg, olive, and raisins on the chicken, and then pour the corn mixture on top. Sprinkle with powdered sugar, and bake at 400 degrees for about 40 minutes, or until the top is nice and browned.

Serve hot.

I think this recipe would be fabulous served in individual pots with a nice ensalada chilena (tomatoes, onion, and vinegar) or a fresh green salad.

Pastel De Choclo

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