In April, near the beginning of fall, I went to the Feria de Mataderos. This feria (gathering of arts, crafts, food and entertainment) is an hour outside of Buenos Aires and a Sunday fair. It is held during the Argentine fall. Each week, a different region of Argentina is represented. Dancers and folk artists present regional dances and songs.
Gauchos, Argentine cowboys, perform stunts where they mount a horse and race towards a small hook above the street where they try to loop a ring. This gaucho was the head of the games. I caught him in a mate break.
My favorite part of the feria was the food. Local women in booths prepared fresh formed and fried empanadas as well as humita tamales. There are also the usual parillas.
Humita is soft and sweet ground corn. Cheese is baked inside the humita tamale. The cooks serve them in the corn husks and tie them with rough string. The orders take a while, but they are worth the wait.
There are plenty of options for sweets. We enjoyed some chocolate milk. There are also wafers filled with dulce de leche; fried pastries filled with membrillo, a local fruit similar to apples; and a hard candy stick with popcorn attached. I was intrigued by the beauty of the amber colored hardened sugar.
Crafts available include mates and bombillas, pure honey, handmade cheeses, meats, and dulce de leche, leather belts, jewelry, ceramics, and Argentinean souvenirs. The piggy banks were calling me. The choices were some of the most high quality and unusual options I’ve seen in the area.
The feria starts at 11 a.m. on Sundays. It’s possible to get to the feria by bus or taxi. For each week’s theme, see the official schedule.