Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Mote con huesillo

Jon suggested that Grace (our resident food critic here at OFA) try a drink here called mote con huesillo.  In my rusty Spanish that sounded like something involving 'little bones', which didn't sound like an appetising drink.  But the other day, on top of Cerro San Cristóbal in Santiago, we were confronted with this stuff everywhere.  It was a hot day, and what the heck, a nice cool glass of little bones might just hit the spot...

Grace wimped out, as did the rest of my family, but in the name of science I had to try one.  For my $850 pesos I got a cup of thick, syrupy substance filled with a large soggy apricot and what looked like... a handful of little bones.  Turns out it's actually a handful of waterlogged pieces of cracked wheat, and the whole concoction is considered the national drink of Chile.

It tasted about like one would expect it to taste:  sickly sweet, with a confusing texture, and not at all thirst-quenching.  It's also very difficult to drink, er, eat.  It came with a cheap plastic spoon which was not at all up to the task of parting the soggy but tough apricot flesh from its pit, and after forcing down a few bites and splashing a bit of it on my shirt I gave up completely and dumped the whole thing in the trash.

I love what I've seen so far of Chile:   the culture, the language, the warm, friendly people.  But I'll leave the national drink to the natives.

1 comment:

  1. I couldn't help but laugh out loud as I read your description of trying mote con huesillo.

    Well at least you tried it!

    I recall my mote being blended so you didn't have to wrestle with the dried fruit or use a spoon. To be honest, the way you described it, it sounded pretty bad!