I went into Lenga Restaurant hoping to get in for a late night dinner in Puerto Natales. I didn’t have a reservations, it was 9:30 pm. and I was starving after a 6-hour boat tour to see two glaciers. I went into Lenga with fingers crossed hoping to get a table. I got lucky and promptly ordered a Chilean Sauvignon blanc to start my dining experience. I decided on two appetizers for my dinner – cebiche and pil pil. The folks at Toore Patagonia, where I was staying, said Lenga has the best food in Puerto Natales. One bite of the Pil Pil de Garbanzos and I think they just might have the best food in Patagonia. It was the best chickpeas I’ve ever eaten. The ceviche and surprise sopapilla starter were fantastic too, but the pil pil was over the top fabulous. Pil pil is a traditional tapas recipe. Here’s Chef/Owner Rodrigo San Martín’s recipe for a chickpea appetizer sure to wow any foodie or dinner guest. I’ve tried to convert into U.S. cooking measurements as close as I could.
Lenga Restaurant’s Pil Pil de Garbanzos Recipe
First really heat pan. Then add in this order, waiting 15 seconds between each ingredient:
1 ml de aceite (Sunflower oil preferred)
1 g garlic (dash)
10 g butter (1/2 tbsp)
60 g boiled or canned chickpeas (1/2 cup)
30 cc white wine (1 ounce)
Reduce for 1 minute the add:
50 cc water or vegetables broth (1.5 ounces)
10 g blue cheese (1/2 tbsp)
10 g sugar free coconut cream (1/2 tbsp)
Sea salt to taste
Cook for 5 minutes.
Put this in a deep warm plate, add some chopped grilled vegetables (eggplants, zucchinis, etc.), parmesan cheese, small dices of onion, green chili pepper and coriander and a twist of lemon or a “lemon foam” made of whipped lemon zest, olive oil and salt.
Serve with warm bread and a Chilean white wine. Buen apetito!