|Carol s/v NautiMoments, Gizelle s/v Dancing Dolphin and Sandy s/v I Yam What I Yam|
taking pastelillo making lessons
The food here in El Salvador is an adjustment for us. We are used to the spicy Mexican chilies, the moles, the salsas… But, El Salvadorans don’t eat spicy food. And they eat a lot of fried food… food that may be okay for my skinny family, but I am getting fluffy and don’t need to be eating fried anything! With that being said…
|Ingredients provided by the staff of Bahia del Sol|
The staff at Bahia del Sol offered a free cooking class, which I very much enjoyed. We learned the art of making papusas, empanadas (different than in Mexico), and pastelillos. And then we ate them! And don’t you agree that it would have been totally rude of me not to sample all of the foods, fried or not – but mostly fried?
|Captain of s/v Lorelei helping himself to homemade El Salvadoran treats|
Papusas are a traditional El Salvadoran food. As you will find taco stands everywhere in Mexico, you will find papuserias everywhere in El Salvador. They are a grilled flat corn bread. Some are filled: beans, cheese and/or chicharones (shredded pork, not pork rind). The filled ones cost around 75 cents each.
|Dora watching our individually made papusas cook|
We also learned how to make pastelillos. The pastelillos are comparable to Mexico’s empenada – a little corn pie filled with ground meat and veggies (potatoes, green beans, carrots, onion, garlic) and then fried.
El Salvadoran empanadas are made with plantains, similar to a banana. The plantains are mashed and mixed with a little hot water. They are then hand patted flat and filled with homemade vanilla pudding. The plantain mixture is then wrapped around the pudding into an egg shape. The mixture is then deep friend and rolled in sugar. I don’t know how mine got a little bigger than everyone else’s.
|Ken s/v NautiMoments and Fran s/v Gosling enjoying a delicious|
pudding filled empanada
The food we made was tasty, but what was going through my mind as I was sampling all of it was how I was going to have to buy the next size up in britches!
Jim and I discovered a little restaurant on the water down the street from Bahia del Sol that serves 2 eggs, a chunk of cheese, beans, fried plantains, French bread and coffee for $2.50. We love to leave the kids sleeping and sneak off for our secret breakfast. The food is cooked on wood burning stove and chickens are running in and out of the kitchen, but the food is wonderful! We’ll have to share our secret breakfast hide-away spot with the kids at some point only because it is what the locals do.
I bought a bouquet of crabs, too. 12 little live crabs bound together with palm fronds cost only $2. They were a little hard to clean up, but I went at them with a toothbrush and then steamed them. They were delicious!
But I think my favorite so far is the fish served whole – again, fried.