Torta Frita: A Traditional Argentine Recipe


photo credit: The Spruce

We consider ourselves incredibly lucky to have the beautiful international diversity we have amidst the staff here at Villa di Maria. Included in these are French, Romanian, and Argentinian influences, the last of which we will focus on through a wonderful recipe highlighted by Lower Elementary Directress Anna Schwind, who spent 16 years of her childhood in Argentina before moving the the States. 

“A few weeks ago, on a similarly gloomy and rainy day, the children who chose to go to Spanish class got to participate in making a traditional Argentine rainy day snack called torta frita.  This snack would be enjoyed at merienda time, in the late afternoon, with mate or cafe con leche,” shares Anna.

Because the children so enjoyed making and eating the torta fritas, Anna promised the children that she would share the recipe with the VdM community so that we could all make these special treats at home! Below, the recipe, from The Spruce.

What You’ll Need

  • 2 1/4 cups flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable shortening (or lard)
  • About 1 cup milk
  • 1 quart vegetable oil (for frying; more or less as needed)

How to Make It

  1. Mix flour, salt, and baking powder in a bowl. Add 2 tablespoons butter and 2 tablespoons shortening or lard and mix into the flour with your fingers until well blended.
  2. Add milk gradually, stirring and then kneading gently as you go, until the mixture forms a smooth dough (add more flour if mixture becomes too wet).
  3. Roll dough out to about 1/4 inch thickness, and use a round cutter to make 3 1/2 inch circles. (Or separate dough into about 10 pieces, shape each piece into a ball, and flatten each ball into a pancake about 1/4 inch thick). Poke a hole in the center of each with your finger.
  1. Add enough vegetable oil (or melt enough shortening or lard) in a small skillet to have a depth of about an inch of fat, and heat until fat sizzles when the dough is added. Fry breads in batches until golden brown on both sides, turning them once.
  2. Drain tortas fries on paper towels and sprinkle with sugar while still hot.
  3. Serve warm.

Note: we did not have vegetable shortening or lard, so we just used butter.

Thank you, Anna, for taking the time to pass this on; we can’t wait to try it!

For more about cooking and baking at Villa di Maria, be sure to check out Thanksgiving at Villa di Maria, 2016; The Science of Baking Bread; Gingerbread Cookies (and Tips for Baking with Little Ones); Lower Elementary Cooking Program; Shall We Have Lunch? (a comprehensive look from start to finish)  Jam Buns; Chocolate Zucchini Bread; and some amazing comprehensive tips on cooking and prepping food from our own French Lower Elementary Assistant, Sophie Andre: In the Kitchen with Children which includes a recipe for Vichy Carrots.