Just this last week my host family bought me real milk. 100% leche de vaca. Making my breakfasts 100% more enjoyable. Cereal and Milk are like Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, together until the end. I could consume a gallon of milk a day and eat cereal every meal. So for the last month-and-a-half I had a difficult time downing cornflakes with dried milk, which I thought was just one of the small hardships of living in another country. But now I am back to pure cow milk! I have, however, found that most everything else about the food down here is not a hardship. It is more like a blessing. I still haven’t tried everything down here, but I’ve eaten almost everything that is “worth” eating and have made a list of my favorite foods. Buen pervecho (Enjoy)
-Flour tortillas made by Naomi, my host mom. These aren’t your regular home-made tortillas that look like Africa. They’re a treat all by themselves. She puts a bit of sugar into her dough, which makes them extremely delicious. At the size of my head I can eat them as a stand-alone meal.
-Chocobananas are a mix of banana and chocolate and heaven. Naomi sells them to make a little extra money, but about twice a week she sends me to school with a couple of bananas that have been dipped in chocolate and frozen like a Popsicle, a true Guatemalan treat.
-Pache is a meal made with either rice or potatoes; I prefer potato. It is muy rico with a texture that is soft and pleasing similar to mashed potatoes. They wrap the rice in am oha leaf, which is a large green leaf and very similar to the leaves that Elves used to wrap lambus in, and then serve it hot with a slice of chicken in the middle. It is great for a snack or a full meal.
-Pancakes, okay these aren’t a local anything, but my host mom makes great flapjacks. Again, I am sure she puts about a pound of sugar into her batter. My host mom makes these for breakfast about once a week and when she is cooking them in the kitchen directly bellow my room the sweet aroma lifts me out of bed.
-Scrambled eggs with refried beans are more common down here than beautiful women with dark eyes. I’ve had this dish for both breakfast and dinner. If you add a little picamas hot sauce to the eggs you get a nice spicy meal. Sometimes my host mom adds peppers and cut up hotdogs to the eggs, which makes me happy. When I am served eggs for dinner, I typically make an egg sandwich with pan and a paste of refried beans. It fills me up and is good and cheap.
-Tacos are good down here. Can you believe that? As I mentioned last week, I had a great taco at the fair the other week. I’ve also ventured out into the street for a tasty taco. And I’ve been treated to a taco or two at home. All three have been different and delicious. I’ve eaten crunchy, soft, and amazingly soft and crunchy together. (I know your thinking of taco bell, but stop this isn’t the four for a dollar Rockies special, this is the real thing.) The best thing about the tacos is the flavor of the meat, simply a miracle, which cures all of the taste buds in my mouth. I’d eat a taco any day if I could.
-Chevres are cheap hotdogs sold on the streets. They’re served with mustard, a sourcrout like mix, ketchup, and mayo. I don’t like mayo so I make sure the street vendors don’t ruin my chevre with it. I think the best part of the chevres are the silver stand they are sold from. They’re similar to ice cream stands you’d find rolling down the beach down the beach on a hot day. I walk by a set of stands every day after I leave the gym. The aroma is intoxicating. It’s all I can do to walk all the way home with out buying a dog and ruining my workout.
-Home cooked chicken with rice and beans is another typical meal I’ve been served for dinner and lunch. Everyone jokes about how much Latin American’s eat rice and beans, but honestly I’ve only had this dish a few times and I’ve enjoyed it each time. Today I had fried chicken with rice and corn off the cob. It was delicious, but probably not healthy.
You can tell that I am eating very well down here. I didn’t list all of my favorites here, because I already listed a few last week when I talked about all of the food I ate at the fair. My older sister, Katie, predicted that I would lose weight when I came down here. Her prediction was based off of the change in diet. Well, I have lost weight but that is only because I’ve been running and lifting weights almost every day at the gym. I’ll need to keep my gym membership if I plan on eating as well as I am right now.