My Chilean Guilty Pleasure: Chorillana

You’ve been working hard allllll week. You deserve to have something sinful, right? Ok, so maybe it’s only Tuesday, but I bet yesterday was a real Munday, am I right? So go on, treat yourself.


In my personal estimation, nothing is more delish than french fries. I’ve been known to drive twenty miles out of my way just for a pile of salty hot fries. Oh yeah, that’s the stuff!

Chileans aren’t as squeamish about deep-fried goodness as North Americans, thank gawd! In fact, the glorious abundance of french fries is one of my continual delights while living in Chile. Not only are french fries an oft-given side, but Chileans have a super yummy starter called Chorillana, which at its base is a giant pile of french fries. No Joke. A REALLY BIG pile of fries.

Ok, disclosure here, chorillana isn’t exactly a starter-only dish. In Chile, this savory pile of awesome is eaten both as a shared starter and an individual meal. It can even be served alongside cerveza (beer) as a sort of tabla-style tapa. Oli and I are big-time fond of this dish so we convinced Mark to make it one Friday night as our finger-food meal to accompany family movie night.

Chorillana ingdt

Here’s what you’ll need to recreate this popular Chilean dish:

  • 16 ounce steak tips, or rump/round steak (sliced as you for for fajitas)
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon aliño completo*
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • pinch of black pepper
  • 3 large potatoes, french-fry cut
  • 1/2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • vegetable oil
  • 1/2 medium yellow onion, thinly julienned
  • 1/2 medium red pepper, julienned
  • 1/2 medium yellow pepper, julienned
  • 1 teaspoon mirin (or white sugar)
  • 1/4 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 tablespoon red wine
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1-2 eggs (fried sunny side up just before serving)
  • salt, to taste
  • For a kick, try sliced banana pepper or jalapeños

*This is a popular spice mix in Chile, containing oregano, garlic, cumin, red pepper, cilantro, and salt. You can substitute with Lawry’s Seasoned Salt, or a spice mix of your choice.


Hot to make a mouth-watering Chilean Chorillana:

ONE  In a large bowl, whisk Worcestershire sauce with 1 teaspoon aliño completo (or spice mix), 1/2 teaspoon paprika, 1/2 teaspoon of salt, and pinch of black pepper. Add steak tips and allow to marinate for at least 1 hour. (This step can be done the night before.)

TWO  Toss the french-fry cut potatoes with olive oil, powdered garlic, and salt. Place them in a cast iron skillet and just cover with cold vegetable oil. Deep fry on high heat for about 25 minutes until they are crispy and golden. Drain off excess oil. (Fry inspiration from Smitten Kitchen.

THREE  In a separate pan, saute the onions and peppers in about 1/2 tablespoon of vegetable oil. Add mirin, oregano, and a pinch of salt. Allow the onions to caramelize a bit, meaning that they turn a dark color – but not burnt – and get a bit sticky. Set the onions and peppers aside (somewhere they will stay warm).

FOUR  De-glaze the same pan with the red wine. Add the minced garlic and cook for about a minute, shaking the pan and moving the garlic around ever so often. Add the steak tips and marinating juices into the pan. Cook until the steak reaches the desired level of doneness. (Chorillana is typically made with meat thoroughly cooked, no pink.)

FIVE  On a large platter, pile the fries and top with caramelized onions and peppers, steak tips, and a fried egg, sunny side up. Before you take your first bite, make sure to puncture the yolk and let that golden goodness run down over the fries, onions, and peppers. You won’t regret it.

Now, all that’s left is to Dig in and Enjoy!

chorillana pin

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