Tuesday, 16 February 2010

Lina’s Crimes Against Food # 1 : Machas a la Parmesana

Lina has committed some serious crimes against food I am sure in her lifetime. But on this trip to Argentina and Chile she committed some heinous crimes. Shameful.
Call me a food snob or just call me old fashioned, whatever, but there are some things that just should not go together. But I am an easygoing person, so each to his own as I say. I mean who am I to tell people what they can or can not eat. Well…..
In fact these crimes against food are committed several thousand times a day in Chile. Possibly more. These crimes are so bad that I can sense all Italian nonna’s turning in their graves. You think that is an earthquake you are hearing. Think again.
Lina was introduced to this crime by her Chilean friend, who shall remain nameless as I want her to make me a pastel de choclo, as we never found a version as good as hers in Chile.
But back to the crime. In Chile, they take mussels or other shellfish, cook them, shell them, and put the meat back into one side of the shell. Sprinkle grated Parmesan on top and then pop them under the grill until it is bubbling.

For me this is so wrong. I know some people love this. Well Parmesan is a lovely tasty thing. Mussels are a delight to the palate if cooked just right. Plain nasty if over cooked. But together I just do not see the point, as because all you can taste is the grilled cheese. All flavour of the delicate mussels is destroyed by the heavy taste of the cheese.
This why in any self respecting Italian restaurant you never find cheese and fish together on the same plate. It’s just a waste of fish. Fish should be savoured and enjoyed, not destroyed by an over powering cheese.
But each to his own is what I say. Lina enjoyed every last mussel and I’m sure she would have eaten them at every meal if she could.
I didn’t try this crime, but I did try the next one. Oh dear. 

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