When the founder of the Argentinean Network of Slow Food Chefs Otilia Kusmin proposed the idea of a Latin American cookbook to Punto Slow Food Buenos Aires, they quickly came to the party. The concept was to collect recipes from Terra Madre chefs that would express the unique culinary heritage of the region, demonstrate the expertise and great knowledge held by the network and rescue recipes – many of them unwritten and at risk of disappearing over time. The result is the Recetario latinoamericano de los cocineros de la red de Terra Madre.
Launched in September this year, the unique recipe collection includes dishes from Terra Madre chefs in Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Chile, Ecuador, Guatemala, Mexico, Paraguay and Peru. Each recipe is preceded by a short introduction of the chef, including their history with Slow Food, and a description of the key ingredients.
The cookbook is available for free download to convivium leaders in the publications section of the leader area, who can share it with their members. Non-members can purchase the book here. Proceeds will go to Slow Food International, Slow Food Foundation for Biodiversity, Terra Madre Foundation and initiatives of the Latin American Network of Chefs.
This recipe is from Chef Ignacio Fontclara, a fourth-generation food artisan from Paraguay. He attended the Terra Madre world meeting in 2008 and is involved in Slow Food education projects.
500 g cassava
250 g dried black beans
50 g scallions, diced
2 hard boiled eggs, chopped finely
150 grams Paraguay cheese, or other fresh unsalted cow’s milk cheese, chopped finely
1 bunch parsley, chopped
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 tsp coriander seeds
1 tsp cumin seeds
3 tbsp oil
salt and pepper to taste
1/4 cup corn oil for frying
Soak the beans in a bowl of water the night before.
The next day, cook the beans in plenty of water until they are soft. Drain and set aside.
Peel the cassava (the flesh should be white without dark spots or streaks), and cut into large pieces.
Boil the cassava in salted water until soft to a knife. Drain and pass the cassava through a mill while still hot, until the texture is uniform and firm. Never process cassava cold, as its high starch content results in a leathery texture. Leave the milled cassava to come to room temperature.
Mix the cassava with the beans until the beans are slightly broken up. Add the scallions, parsley, seeds and salt and pepper, garlic and 3 tablespoons of oil and mix.
Form the mix into patties, adding a little chopped egg and cheese to the center of each one.
Cook in a skillet with a little oil, browning three minutes on each side and then finishing them in a hot oven for five minutes.