They’re meaty . They’re massive. They drip mayonnaise like a Hellman’s sponsored fountain…
They are, THE CHILEAN SANDWICHES!
It doesn’t take more than a couple of days in Chile to understand that Chileans love their sandwiches! Whenever you are looking for a place to eat, you will most probably come across several joints offering a variety of sandwiches that make up a pretty standard menu in most chains or one-off restaurants. Thank the German immigration and influence for this.
If you are a pork lover, a traditional “lomito” will suit you just right! Thin slices of juicy pork loin, served with your choice of toppings (onions, tomato, lettuce, pickled cabbage, avocado, fried egg…) and, ALWAYS, the most generous serving of mayo known to man-kind!
Chilean sandwiches are in fact half sandwich, half mayo. If it wasn’t for this one little but greasy detail, I would say this is an excellent alternative to fast food, as it’s quick but always fresh and cooked on the spot. But man, I have never seen such portions of mayonnaise being served anywhere else in the world! So much, that mayo counts as an “ingredient” in your sandwich (most times a default one though), and not as a free sauce you can help yourself to at your table. Those free condiments, such as ketchup, chilly sauce (locally referred to as “aji”) or mustard are almost second class. Mayo is the real sh*t!
Other popular varieties of sandwich will include churrasco (grilled beef) and wagyu burgers and it is also very common to include mashed avocado as a topping, as if the extreme wetness sponsored by the mayo wasn’t enough.
Go out in Santiago de Chile during lunch break on a working day and you will find sandwich places full of people, from students to executives in suits. What do they all have in common when they eat? They will dig into their sandwiches with knife and fork! It is considered a bit rude to eat with your hands in Chile, although I must confess I’ve had my piggy moments with these dripping sandwiches. They are actually hard to eat when you have a mouth my size.
Round, thick and very wet…
…give it up for the typical Chilean sandwich!