Argentina is a country with lots of delicious cuisines to try. From succulent steaks to tempting empanadas served with a rich Malbec, Argentinian food is a delight for the taste buds. However, what do the Argentinians enjoy for breakfast? Here, we show you the ropes of desayuno Argentino, or Argentina breakfast.
Authentic Argentina breakfast: Keep it simple
In Argentina, breakfast is a simple affair. Most natives will stick to tostadas, which is the humble slice of toast. This will be served with orange juice, coffee or mate – then Argentinians like to save themselves for lunch or dinner. When searching for an authentic Argentinian breakfast spot in Buenos Aires, be wary of anywhere claiming to be traditional that serves eggs – they’re catering to tourists.
However, when we say ‘simple’ don’t read ‘boring’. If there’s one thing they’re serious about in Argentina, it’s their pastries. Medialunes are the staple Argentina breakfast pastry. Shaped like a croissant with a brioche-like texture, Argentinians traditionally cook medialunes in either manteca (butter) or grasa (vegetable oil). When you’re breakfasting, it’s likely your waiter will ask you how you’d like your medialunes done.
Other Argentinian pastries include facturas or bizcochos. Facturas are also similar to brioche. However, these tiny delights come topped with membrillo, or quince paste. Alternatively, you can order your facturas with crema pastelera, which is a type of egg custard. Bizcochos, on the other hand, are a type of breakfast biscuit. Crusty on the edges and soft on the inside, these delicious morsels are made by layering butter and baking.
Furthermore, for those with a serious sweet tooth, Argentinians also enjoy churros at breakfast. A type of South American pastry you might be more familiar with, churros are usually served with either chocolate, dulce de leche or sprinkled with icing sugar.
Yerba Mate: Argentina’s Signature Beverage
Many Argentinians will swap coffee at breakfast for yerba mate. Pronounced ‘yer-bah mah-tay’, indigenous Argentinians drank this hot beverage long before Europeans arrived on the continent. Yerba mate has a smoky, delicate flavor, a bit like green tea but with no bitterness. Lower in caffeine and higher in minerals, yerba mate is a health-giving alternative to coffee. In fact, according to research, yerba mate contains almost all of the minerals you need for the day. This includes vitamins C, B, potassium, and manganese, and more antioxidants than green tea to boot.
Enjoy Argentina breakfast in Buenos Aries
The best place to find a real Argentinian breakfast is in Buenos Aries’ cafés. Once frequented by bohemian writers like Jorges Luis Borges, these cozy eateries are perfect for an authentic Argentina breakfast. For example, Borges used to enjoy coffee at La Biela in Recoleta. Another historic option is El Federal in San Telmo, which is nearly 150 years old.
For more varied options – or for those craving a more substantial brunch – another good spot is Oui Oui. However, this French-inspired café is extremely popular, so go with a view to taking a stroll around Palermo after you put your name on the list. Equally, Las Violetas in the upscale part of Recoleta serves a more weighty take on the traditional medialunes selection.