Wednesday, February 11, 2009
Food for Thought--Discovering the Pupusa
Recently I was in the Washington DC area visiting with friends whose children suffer from a laundry list of allergies. Combined with my own new sugar-free, wheat-free diet plan, deciding on where to eat for dinner posed a bit of a problem. But not for long. My friend, already well-versed in the nearby take-out restaurants where both of her kids could eat without going into anaphylactic shock, suggested Peruvian food. Not knowing a thing about Peurvian food except that corn plays a prominent role, I happily agreed and allowed her to do the ordering.
When she came back with bags of these bean and cheese stuffed corn pancake things called pupusas, I thought I had died and gone to heaven. The pupusa according to Wikipedia actually has its origins in El Salvador, but plays a prominent if not slightly modified role in the cuisines of several Latin American countries. The pupusa is actually just a thick corn tortilla but it's what you stuff it with (pork, beans, cheese, veggies), slather on it, or roll in it (sirloin, lettuce, onions, and cilantro) that makes it so wonderful. The closest thing I can compare it to is an arepa. I don't know how I made it through life up until now never having experienced a pupusa. Am I the only one? Has everyone else out there been noshing on pupusas (Don't you just love saying the word, even? Go ahead say it aloud and tell me it didn't make you giggle.) and just didn't tell me? I will now be going on a mission to find a pupuseria in Philly to feed my cravings. I hope you can find one too.