The latest in our Globetrotting Cake series takes us to Argentina, land of the Tango, the gaucho, and the most shades of the colour blue imaginable.
Argentinians have a very sweet tooth, enjoying as they do the ubiquitous dulce de leche (milk caramel) for breakfast spread on toast, as an afternoon snack in an alfajore – a round biscuit usually sandwiched with dulce de leche filling and covered in chocolate, and to accompany panqueque (pancakes) as dessert.
As I’ve mentioned before on this blog, I’m a big fan of afternoon tea. So when the chance came up to experience it in the Garden Room at the Alvear Palace Hotel in Buenos Aires, who was I to refuse?
Aside from the delicious range of individual desserts and cakes, the winner for me was their ‘dessert chariot’. This conjured up images of an all-conquering Roman riding into the tea room aboard a horse drawing a chariot filled with desserts. Alas it was not that theatrical (perhaps something to feed back to them as an idea though?) but merely a hostess trolley wheeled in by a charming young waiter.
To accompany my tea I opted for the Patagonia Berry tea, a blend of rose petals, blueberries, red berries and currants. Afterall, when in Rome…
Patagonia is a well-renowned chocolate hub and many of the towns there have more chocolate shops than restaurants, such is their passion for it. Of course the restaurants do their bit, serving chocolate fondues for dessert too. The chocolate shops tout every conceivable kind of chocolate, from truffles, supersized flakes to oversize slabs all neatly laid out in never-ending counters.
Of course it’s not only sweet treats that Argentina do so well, for their countryside is truly majestic and there are some incredible vistas to be marvelled at all over the country: