Bienvenido a Santiago, Chile [YQrtw Day 82 Jun 28]

santiago chile

Location: Buenos Aires, Argentina
Location: Santiago, Chile

[This post was delayed by a day because of travelling and feasting.]

Welcome to Santiago
Welcome to Santiago

Finally, I am leaving Buenos Aires. I have been in Argentina for more than 3 weeks which is about 1 week too long. I blame it on my US visa application but I should be thankful that the application was successful.

However, thanks to Buenos Aires and Argentina, I’ve met quite a few exciting people. Like me, they’ve decided to take time off from “real life” and travel/ live abroad for an extended period of time. I feel less strange.

My plane to Santiago was leaving at 11:25am and I booked a 8:10am shuttle. This meant that I had to wake up at 7:00am and skip breakfast.

While waiting for the shuttle, I managed to lose my shuttle booking voucher. (I later found it in my pocket.) When the driver asked for the voucher, I had to pretend that I left it in the hostel.

Throughout the drive to the airport, the driver was twitching. Not listening-to-music twitch but a jumpy shoulder. I was afraid he might lose control and run into something.

Luckily, we arrived in one piece.

At the airport, I found the Overexposed Model in one of the ads. For those who don’t know me in real life, I have been “curating” a tumblr called The Overexposed Model which features a stock image model on many  different ads.

I groaned loudly when I saw the ad. It’s not really that exciting seeing her on advertisements now. It’s more like a crazy nightmare.

Overexposed Model in Argentina
Overexposed Model in Argentina

Sky Airlines flight

Let’s head to my Sky Airlines flight. The plane was a small vehicle with three seats on both sides. I had the aisle seat as well as a lumpy seat.

The meal was horrible, one of those that give plane food a bad name.

Sky Airline food
Sky Airline food

They didn’t even have coffee or tea. Gasp. Thank goodness the flight was only 2 hours.

The plane seemed to take forever to land in Santiago airport. The clouds were really thick and the plane was flying around for a long time before it landed.

I took a shuttle bus (5,000 peso) to my hostel. The bus waited for a while for enough passengers before heading to town.

Along the way, I saw some beautiful green mountains. It was emerald green with a few trees lined up on its side. I’m liking the city.

Japanese lunch

Izakaya Yoko in Santiago, Chile
Izakaya Yoko in Santiago, Chile

After checking into my 6-person dorm, I headed out for Japanese. Sky Airline’s inflight magazine recommended a Japanese restaurant in Santiago that was just down the road from my hostel.

The place had two floors. I went to the second floor since the first floor was full.

I almost had a heart attack when I saw what the other customers were doing. They were drinking espressos, after a Japanese meal!

After getting over the shock, I ordered the set meal. It wasn’t until everything arrived that I knew what it was: Fish tempura with chicken in soy sauce.

The meal was delicious but the green tea was horrid. There’s something bad about Santiago’s tap water. It’s foul.

After lunch, I took a long siesta, something I needed badly.

Peruvian dinner and drinks

For dinner, I went out with Xiao Li who I “met” on Twitter. She has been in Santiago for a while and has been teaching entrepreneurship. I feel highly underachieved compared to her.

Xiao Li and her boyfriend, M, brought me to a Peruvian restaurant where I had my first pisco sour. I am in love with Pisco Sour.

This is obviously not Pisco Sour.
This is obviously not Pisco Sour but it is delicious.

Despite being on the same longtitude as Buenos Aires, Santiago is very very cold. I suspect it’s because it’s in a valley.

The night’s temperature dropped to about 7 degrees C. That is bloody cold. Luckily there’s a heater in my room so I didn’t freeze during the night.

Would you like to come to Santiago?

#FoodFriday: How to cook steak in a hostel

cook steak in the hostel

Welcome to YQtravelling’s FoodFriday–the day of the week when I show off some of the lovely eats I had while travelling.

Today’s post is a special feature where I give you tips on how to cook yummy steak in a hostel. Let’s eat!

When travelling, eating out at restaurants is a good treat. But if you need to save a few pesos/dollars, cooking will save you more money.

Since I’ve been in Argentina, I’ve cooked steak in my hostel kitchen for about 5 times. My hostel-cooked steak usually costs around 25 peso (S$6) while eating out costs a minimum of 45 pesos (S$11) to more than 100 pesos (S$25).

For this recipe, you will need…

Salt and oil, the only other things you need besides the meat
Salt and oil, the only other things you need besides the meat
Meet the type of Argentine meat I like.
Meet the type of Argentine meat I like.
  • Steak: Preferably Argentine steak. I choose mine base on how pretty it looks.
  • Coarse salt: Larger grains of salt make it easier to see
  • Oil
  • Frying pan/ Grill
  • Watch
  • Plates to dirty and plates to serve

Step 1: Season the meat

Rinse the meat and pat dry with kitchen towel (the paper kind, not the cloth).

Pour some oil into the plate and lay the meat on it. Pour more oil on the meat. Sprinkle the oiled meat liberally with salt so that it looks like it’s Edward Cullen under the sun.

Salt the meat
Salt the meat

If the meat was refrigerated, this is a good time to allow it to be less cold and more room temperature.

I’m not very sure how long the salt should be on but I give it at least 10 minutes.

Step 2: Heat up the pan

If you are using an iron grill, make sure it heats up nicely before you start. I like frying pans too and these don’t take long to heat so I wait about 30 seconds before I cook to heat it up.

Step 3: Cook one side of the meat

Cook that meat
Cook that meat

Lay the meat in the middle where the fire is. Afterwards DO NOT TOUCH the meat or it will turn out burnt in strange places.

I usually wait about 6 minutes for my one side to be done. The meat usually turns out well done if I do 6 minutes on one side and 4 minutes on the other.

Step 4: Check if your meat bleeds

Let it bleed a little
Let it bleed a little

If your meat starts to ooze blood from the part that is exposed to the air, you are doing a good job.

Step 5: Flip the meat and cook more

Now to cook the other side
Now to cook the other side

When the 6 minutes is up, flip the meat to the other side. The cooked part of the steak should be easily separated from the grill/pan.

Wait another 4 minutes for this side to be done. Then take out the steak.

Step 6: Leave the steak

Let the meat rest before your devour it
Let the meat rest before your devour it

This is the most difficult part of this meal. After cooking, leave the steak for about 4 to 6 minutes. I read that this allows the juices in the meat to redistribute evenly so the steak is tastier.

I usually distract myself by cooking the other piece of steak because it’s hard not to swallow the hot steak whole when it comes out of the pan.

Step 7: Eat, drink and be merry

Fruit of your labor
Fruit of your labor

After the waiting period is over, it’s time to dig into your meal.

Red wines supposedly go well with steak but it’s your meal so drink whatever your want.

Is someone judging your rose? Tell them to buy their own drink.
Is someone judging your rose? Tell them to buy their own drink.

Do you have other hostel recipes to share? Share them in the comments.