Every summer, my dad’s family has our annual Argentine asado. Channel My Big Fat Greek Wedding with some Latin flavor. It’s very similar.
Lamb cooked on an asador on the yard of my uncle’s farmhouse. Samwera and vinegar-and-oil salad. Empanadas deep fried in copious quantities, never enough. Sangria and wine. Flan and aros con leche. And always, always thick sweltering heat that squeezes sweat out of your body like juice out of a dehydrated fruit.
What started as a meal shared by Argentine expats and returned missionary families on the southside of Chicago has become a motley collection of co-workers and boyfriends and not-really-related relatives.
But at its core, the asado is a celebration of family and fellowship, a sort of communion––lamb and bread and wine.
My uncle, one of the asadors, cutting the lamb. Vegetarians beware.
It’s not your typical family reunion, but it is certainly one of the highlights of my year. I find myself evermore patriotic for a country I have never been to. Someday.