Mate y alfajores make the perfect Argentine tea treat. Mate, an infusion made with a leaf native to South America and drunk in a gourd through a shared straw, is quite bitter. Therefore, its taste is perfectly offset by the sweetness of alfajores, a sweet, shortbread-like biscuist which sandwich a layer of caramel (or dulce de leche, the Argentine version, which is much thicker).
Earlier this year, we visited the house of Paloma in Buenos Aires. She is 15 and, along with her friend Camila, agreed to share several days with us on video, including the preparation of a traditional merienda.
The video focuses on the mate preparation, and offers a glimpse into Argentine culture and everyday life. Language-wise, it is the perfect resource to practise instructions, as Paloma walks Camila through each and every step in preparing the mate.
Once back in the UK, we noticed that the alfajores made only a small appearance in the video, so we thought it would be great to create a second video with the recipe for the sweets, as a further opportunity to practise instructions and as a project that could be easily replicated in class. Have a look and let us know what you think!
And why not try those activities we posted earlier too? ‘5 Listening activities that don’t require worksheets‘