During our month in Guatemala, we weren’t overly impressed with food options. Seeing as Mexico, home to one of the worlds greatest cuisines, is right next door; we were surprised to find that the food scene was lacking. Not to say it wasn’t around, it just wasn’t as prevalent as it’s neighbour to the North.
Santa Ana, El Salvador. Most travellers come here for two reasons: to stay at one of the best hostels in Central America, or to hike the incredible volcano just outside of town.
We did neither.
Juayua is a small village on the Ruta de la Flores in El Salvador, a popular tourist route consisting of several small villages in the cool highlands of the Northwestern edge of the country. Aside from the main pull with backpackers of the hikes to surrounding waterfalls in the area, our reason for visiting Juayua was much more specific.
Antigua. I’ve heard about this travellers Mecca for years; stories of arrival and love upon first glance, a planned week turning into several months, and dreams of past memories of their beloved second home.
We didn’t quite get it…
Funny enough, while it may have been unusually warm back home in Edmonton, it was actually warmer there than it was where we were for most of the time spent here. While the unexpected cold weather was a slight shock to our system, it was another encounter on our first day that really set the mood for the coming days…
The torta: essentially just the name given to any Mexican sandwich. During our time in Oaxaca, this was one of the first foods we immediately fell in love with, and has remained one of our top choices when grabbing a bite on the side of the road. This is one of those comfort foods that you eat without remorse: forget about caloric intake, don’t bother counting carbs, or getting enough ‘green’ in your meal.
Some pretentious food types and Chefs will proclaim that condiments are a cop-out, that if the cooks really knew what they were doing, the eater wouldn’t need to add anything more. As an occasionally pretentious food type and former Chef myself, I can attest to this fact.
Roughly 30km east of Oaxaca, the town of Tlacolula holds one of the most impressive outdoor markets we’ve ever been to; not only in terms of size, but also the incredible selection of goods for sale. Many locals from surrounding villages and tribal communities venture into the city each week to display their product
It was supposed to be a nice spot to settle and relax, to stop and lay down some plans for the coming months. We planned on popping in, enjoying some great food, and getting out. Feeling like home wasn’t part of the deal, it certainly didn’t make leaving any easier. Yet five weeks later, we closed our apartment door behind us for the final time and walked to the bus station as the sun set ahead of us.
From high-end restaurants, to cramped, smoke-filled markets and late-night street carts, finding a bite to eat is never an issue. Whether your searching for roasted chicken in complex moles, to charcoal grilled beef, or sandwiches overflowing with greasy chorizo, you’ll get your fix.
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