You are here:
It's safe to say Colombian food often gets a bad wrap, but if you give it a chance, I'm confident you'll find at least five dishes you'll want to eat more than once.
Below are five of my favorites. These are the foods I miss most when I'm not in the country.
I discovered ajiaco on my first full day in Colombia. I was walking around Plaza Bolivar with my couchsurfing host in Bogota, when we dipped into a restaurant serving cuisine typical of the region.
I ordered the ajiaco, a thick soup with shredded chicken, potatoes, corn, and cream, to which you add avocado, rice, capers, and fresh cilantro. It'll fill you up and keep you warm on a chilly day.
I'm not normally a big soup fan, but this one is incredible.
The Caribbean coast offers visitors a plethora of seafood options. My favorite is the fried pargo (red snapper). For me, this fish offers a lot of tender, juicy bites without a lot of work de-boning the thing.
Just looking at the photo above, taken at a restaurant on the beach in Taganga, has me ready to book a flight to the coast.
Arepas are everywhere, and at every meal, in Colombia, but all are not created equal. More often then not, the ones served in restaurants are small, dry, and lacking any flavor. That's why I prefer to indulge my arepa addiction on the streets.
Street vendors have a way of adding enough butter and cheese to bring arepas to life. And in Medellin Colombia, they'll also offer to add a squirt of sweetened condensed milk to the top which adds a touch of sweetness to the saltiness of the arepa and cheese.
Bandeja Paisa is a traditional dish from the state of Antioquia, of which Medellin is the capital.
It a super-sized combination of Colombian favorites, including meat, chicharron (pork fat), chorizo, beans, fried plantains, a fried egg, avocado, a small salad, and an arepa.
I'm not a big meat eater, which is why I was so happy to find a version with chicken in the pueblo of Guatape, a few hours east of Medellin.
These salty, deep-fried balls of cheese bread are the bomb. I'm sure they have no health benefits whatsoever, but they are seriously addictive, and while you can get them any time of year, they're especially popular around Christmas.
Now it's your turn. Which foods do you like most in Colombia? Leave a comment below.