Unlike its neighbours, who have heartily tucked into the culinary treasure of South America, Argentina has preserved a distinctly European heritage in its cooking. As a result there is no such thing as an Argentine cuisine in the sense that we refer to French Italian or Japanese.
When the first European explorers peered into the indigenous larder, they weren’t quite sure what they were looking at. Picky eaters, they liked the potato, but snubbed many other local ingredients, and regarded guanacos (cameloid llama-like beast) as walking overcoats. So they called home for provisions: cattle, poultry and vegetables. As a result, Argentine cuisine is largely ‘European based’ derived more from early settlers who discovered and populated Argentina than from the primitive inhabitants of the Pampas, Patagonian plains, the semi-deserts of the Cuyo, and the vast Mesopotamic region. Argentina’s contribution to world gastronomy are simple flavours and naturally organic ingredients, Andean potatoes, Patagonian lamb, Ushuaian crab, trout from Bariloche, berries from Rio Negro and of course beef from the pampas, the world’s most famous grazing pasture.