(Photo by From Argentina With Love)
The Argentine Christmas cuisine has, as much of its culinary traditions, a lot of European influence. However, in Argentina Christmas takes place in the Summer, which means hot stuffed turkey is often out of the question. Asados, as could only be expected, are quite common, and especially welcome by the poolside, and otherwise many of the dishes for this festivity, including the famous Vitel Thoné and stuffed tomatoes, are served cold. One of the seasonal favorites are piononos which are special rolls made from a sweet dough and filled with either sweet or savory ingredients. Sweet version include dulce de leche piononos (of course!) and strawberry and cream piononos, and savory versions vary and may include ham and cheese, roquefort, tuna or chicken. The cake like dough, which is spread thin on a flat backing sheet to ensure its perfect-for-rolling rectangular shape, is what makes it distinctive.
The original pionono was actually a cylindrical shaped cake that originated in Granada in Spain, designed to resemble Pope Pio IX (hence the name). Although the Argie version is nothing like the original, it will surely be very present this Christmas given its papal undertone. Find a recipe of pionono here.