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The Wandering Dropout

After trying really hard to find something useful to be good at, it looks like my calling in life is to travel and eat

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Fooood

Colombian Food: Obleas

Ok, so these are no traditional obleas – these ones were from Cronch, a new obleas-and-milkshake place that opened in Girardot way too close to our leaving.

Essentially, obleas are a crisp, slightly sweet, wafer-esque biscuit, slathered in something super sweet and delicious. You make a sort of sandwich with another oblea, and try to stop the gooey inside from leaking all over you.

Traditionally this would be made up of arequipe, some super runny cream, and maybe some cheese – Colombians like putting cheese in sweet things, including fruit salad, hot chocolate and donuts.

Ours, being a slightly more artisanal version, were smothered in nutella, nuts, and homemade forest fruits sauce, and cream and forest fruits, respectively.

Que ricoooooo!!

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Colombian Food: Sancocho

Sancocho seems to be found all over Colombia and is a really popular lunch. There are chicken and beef versions but they’re essentially identical apart from the meat.

It’s made up of a combination of meat (I’m pretty sure this was beef shin, or at least something similar), corn, potatoes, yuca, and plantain all cooked in a deliciously rich meaty soup. In my opinion one of the most flavoursome of Colombian dishes (there are actual herbs, people!) it’s a welcome break from rice, arepa and overcooked meat.

My sancocho above is served ‘bandeja’ style – on a plate, with the soup on the side – but it’s more normal to find everything in a huge bowl with the soup poured over the top. I’ve also got some ahuyama – a squash-like vegetable – and a bit of salad because my lovely lunch lady knows that I like vegetables more than the average Colombian.

What a babe. What a feast. Nom.

Introducing.. the lulo

Lulo is gross if you try and eat it like an apple – sour and a bit bitter.

Whizz it up in a blender with lots of sugar and ice, though, and it becomes the most refreshingly zingy drink you’ve ever tried.

Also going by the name naranjilla (little orange) in Ecuador, it seems to be one of those fruits that doesn’t really exist in the English language or English-speaking-world.

So if you’re somewhere that sells ‘jugo de lulo’ I would aprovechar (make the most of) it while you can!!

Introducing.. the pitaya

Ooh yes, I’ve got more crazy Colombian fruits for you. 

The pitaya – originally found over here in South America and taken to Asia by missionaries, where it is commonly known as dragonfruit – is a deliciously refreshing, sweet fruit perfect for slicing up and chucking in fruit salads.

The seeds supposedly have quite a strong laxative effect so you’re supposed to swallow rather than chew them.. you’ve been warned!

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The outside explains the English name ‘dragonfruit’

The Artery-Busting Bandeja Paisa

When I was in Medellín I obviously had to try the dish they’re so proud of, which apparently tastes a million times better in an authentic Paisa (=from Medellín and surrounding areas) restaurant.

So what is it? Essentially a big pile of rice and beans with various types of meat lumped on top, and a side of avocado. Plus an arepa and some fried sweet plantain. Oh and a fried egg of course. Continue reading “The Artery-Busting Bandeja Paisa”

Introducing.. The Granadilla

So it looks like frogspawn inside.. but that sweet, gloopy mess filled with crunchy little seeds is one of the most delicious things you could ever try. 

I don’t have school today – thanks to the extreme work-aversion found in Colombia’s public school system – so I’m sat enjoying a late breakfast of fruit and iced coffee and promising myself that I’ll write some proper blog posts today.

If I write it in public I have to do it right?

Long live the granadilla ❤

Menu del Día

My first “menú” of the trip.

Colombians, and south Americans in general, love these two-course set lunches – sometimes called “corriente” in neighbouring lands – that work out crazily cheap compared to buying off a menu.

They tend to include a vegetable-based soup, a meat-and-rice-based main, and a nice fresh drink of some sort for a bargain price.

Today I had a vegetable pasta soup, followed by a small side salad, rice, meat, yummy mixed vegetables (a rare luxury here..) and delicious maduro – baked or fried sweet plantain. All washed down with some deliciously fresh strawberry juice.

The best thing? It was 5,500 pesos. So something like £1.25 for all three courses 🙂

A Taste of Girardot

One of my first dinners in Girardot.. a delicious “callentado” = rice and beans, minced meat, fried egg, plantain and a little arepa to soak up all the juices..

It was AMAZING but also so ridiculously filling that I’m getting prepared for having to roll myself back home eventually. Oh well!

The World’s Coolest McDonald’s?

It’s a pretty big claim, but we stumbled upon what claims to be the coolest MaccyDs in the world – and I personally would have to agree.

But then, I get excited when they have those play places with crazy slides attached, so I’m possibly not always the best measure of coolness..

Once you’ve ordered your lunch, you can take it over to the FULL-SIZED AIRPLANE parked in the garden (next to the kids play area.. don’t give in to the temptation..) and enjoy that salty fatty goodness while sitting on a cool custom seat inside. Winning.

 

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