Every country has its own unique and traditional gastronomy. And, while I’ve talked to you before about different Colombian foods, I have never focused specifically on what I consider some pretty a-typical combinations of foods that are eaten here quite frequently and are considered completely normal. Today, I am going to tell you about some of these combinations–don’t judge them too harshly; they may soon blow your taste buds away!
Hot chocolate and cheese
This may be my most favorite weird pairing of foods. The first time I heard of eating hot chocolate with cheese, I wasn’t so sure of it, but after tasting the delicious slightly salty, creamy cheese together with the smooth, sweet, silkiness of Colombian hot chocolate, I knew I had found something I loved and would enjoy frequently! Normally, the cheese you drop in your hot chocolate (yes, you are actually supposed to put the cheese in the hot chocolate, not just eat it with the hot chocolate) is a mozzarella type cheese, and it’s great as well with a nice pandebono or almojabana–two traditional Colombian rolls.
Soup and banana
In the United States we normally eat our soups with bread or crackers. In Colombia, many soups are eaten with bananas. Yes, bananas. The first time someone asked me if I wanted a banana with my soup, I wasn’t quite sure what to respond. Now, I know it’s as normal as asking someone if they’d like ice in their water.
Sweet plantain filled with bocadillo and cheese
Now, many of you may have probably tried a sweet plantain–fried, baked or sautéed they are delicious! In Colombia, you’ll find them offered with bocadillo (sweet guava paste) and cheese stuffed down the middle. While it’s a little overwhelming for me, it’s not a bad combination. Just make sure you eat it for a dessert and not an appetizer or main dish! And, if you think it will be too sweet, try the sweet plantain with just cheese—it is a scrumptious mix of sweet and salty!
Mazamorra and panela
I have talked to you about mazamorra before–it’s a ground up and pressure-cooked corn and milk based dish comparable to a corn soup. It’s one of my favorite Colombian dishes, and it is normally eaten with bits of panela (unrefined cane sugar). I guess it would be comparable to eating corn soup with chunks of brown sugar. I know it may sound extremely weird at first, but the chunks of panela add just the right kick of sweetness to the dish! This pairing of foods is normally eaten as an appetizer or side dish, and it is especially common in the Coffee Zone region of Colombia.
Fried egg with rice
While you often find fried egg and rice as a part of a bigger dish, many Colombians will eat this pairing of food when they are rushed for time, when the cupboards are bare, or when they may not have money to buy many groceries. Whatever the reason may be, it’s a common pairing of food that everyone knows and has, at some point, eaten. My favorite to have fried egg and rice is with a nice slice of fresh avocado and a portion of beans!
I hope I’ve gotten your taste buds adventurous and ready to try these weird, but delicious Colombian food combinations!
Until next time,
Paige M. Poole
About the author:
“Paige M. Poole is an Alabamian and traveler at heart who has settled, for now, in Barranquilla, Colombia, and earns her living as an English professor at the Instituto de Idiomas (Language Institute) at la Universidad del Norte (University of the North). When not teaching English, she enjoys blogging, traveling, relaxing on the beach, and spending time with her partner and two cats, Milo and Sophie. You can see more of Paige’s traveling experiences in her personal blog www.trotamunda.wordpress.com
- Cooking Class in Bogota Tour (www.uncovercolombia.com)
- My Three Favorite Colombian Soups (www.uncovercolombia.com)
- My Favorite Colombian Drinks (www.uncovercolombia.com)
- The Colombian breakfast (www.uncovercolombia.com)