Lala’s Argentinean Grill


Lala’s is located in the trendy area of Ventura Blvd in Studio City. A hip little area of sushi, bars, small plates and burgers gives variety to the valley locals. On a very special evening with my sweet friend Bryn, we decided that we would like to dine at Lala’s Argentinean Grill. Both of us had passed it many times throughout the years, but never stopped to try it. On Monday night the outdoor patio of the warm spring evening was packed with people. Families celebrating special occasions, special events, couples out to dinner and large parties all enjoying the modern atmosphere, plates of food and good company.


Lala’s is modern in its appearance with subtle ambiance and plenty of seating. The menu is very large with many different options for diners. As we sat to share in a bottle of wine, our waiter was pleasant, but absent for water refills and the finer details of excellent customer service. The service wasn’t terrible, but just not something to really write home about.


As we looked over the menu, Bryn decided on Mahi Mahi and mashed potatoes and I decided that I would try an appetizer sampler of empanadas with one cheese, one spinach and one beef; a tortilla de papa and grilled chorizo; and an arugula salad. As we discussed celebratory events and enjoyed food, wine, and each other’s company, I found the food to be interesting and delicious. The empanadas had a wonderful crust and each of the fillings was piping hot. I liked the addition of deliciously garlicky chimmichuri and tomato salsa. The tortilla de papa was very different. It was a wedge of seasoned potatoes that were cooked till just tender, but still able to hold their shape. The chorizo was a little underwhelming, but the sausage had good texture—I just wish it had a bit more flavor. Bryn’s fish was cooked well and she seemed to enjoy her food. My salad had a light dressing, but was more lettuce than anything else. Overall, the experience was nice. It was good to have a different sample of Argentinian food with great company.


Congratulations on your new job, Bryn. I’m so proud of you and excited for your new journey!




Chorizo with Sweet Potatoes and Zucchini‏

I eat chorizo often. I love Mexican chorizo, though most people have questionable ideas of its origins and what it’s made of. Chorizo is just something I’ve grown up with, eaten many times and will eat tons more of for the rest of my life.  There are different varieties, from beef to pork and the newly introduced soyrizo, which is also pretty tasty. I’ve never made homemade chorizo, which I need to get around to pronto, so here’s a good reminder for me to make this recipe by Spiciefoodie for chorizo check Nancy out, she makes amazing food.
And so I digress from my recipe, but that seems like something I often do when I think about childhood foods, because who really had recipes to follow when mom just had to feed a bunch of crazy kids who were starving and nagging her to death. I love you mom. So while she put up with our madness, we would have Papas con Chorizo. My mom would cook the potatoes in the microwave with small diced potatoes covered with plastic wrap to steam in a bath of water, seasoning salt, and butter, until they were soft.  Then she would place a good amount of chorizo in a large pan and fry it till it was no longer a solid form, but melted salty goodness. Then she would place the potatoes in and stir the mixture till it was incorporated. She always set a large portion aside for my brother–he hated eggs–and then with the rest of the mixture, she would place scrambled eggs in it and incorporate well. I can smell the chorizo on Saturday mornings with cartoons blaring, me and my brother and sister arguing about something, and my dad mowing the lawn, all while we waited for breakfast.  We would scoop up mouthfuls of Papas con Chorizo with flour or corn tortillas (I liked corn) and have a full stomach in no time.
This is not my mom’s chorizo, but it is still delicious. It’s made with zucchini, sweet potato, eggs and chorizo and it’s the easiest thing you could do for breakfast in a hurry. It makes for a delicious breakfast burrito filling and you can use any type of Mexican chorizo you’d like for this.
I hope you eat many breakfast meals that remind you of sweet times in the kitchen when you were young.
Chorizo with Sweet Potatoes and Zucchini
1 medium sweet potato, diced small
1 large zucchini, cut in ½ and then in ¼- ½ inch pieces
2 tablespoons Mexican chorizo
4 eggs, cracked and scrambled in a small bowl
½ cup water
1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon dried parsley
Splash of Tapatio (optional)
Corn or flour tortillas
In a medium-sized skillet over medium-high heat, place a teaspoon of extra virgin olive oil in the pan.
Add sweet potatoes to the pan and stir, till edges are slightly brown, about 3 minutes.
Place a ½ cup of water in the pan and 1 teaspoon of dried parsley, stir and cover. Cook over medium-low heat for about 5-7 minutes, till potatoes are soft. Note: This could be longer if you diced your potatoes larger.
If the water has all evaporated before the potatoes are soft, add a ¼ cup more water till potatoes are done.
Take the sweet potatoes out of the pan and set aside.
Take the same pan and add the chorizo to the pan, smashing it and melting it down over medium heat.
Add zucchini to the pot and cook for about 3 minutes.
Add the scrambled eggs and cook for an additional 4-5 minutes.
Lastly, fold in the potatoes and heat till warmed through.
Heat up tortillas and serve alongside Chorizo or make small burritos. Enjoy with hot sauce of your choice; I like Tapatio.