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El Salvador- Cooking and Food Edit
Overview of Salvadoran Cuisine History Edit
El Salvador is the smallest country in Central America and it is known for its volcanoes, black sand beaches, pre-Columbian ruins, and tropical forests. El Salvador's main agricultural products include corn, sugar cane, rice, tomatoes, cattle, and coffee. "Comida tipica" -- traditional dishes influenced by the Mayan and Aztec cultures -- include pupusas, curtido (slightly fermented cabbage slaw usually served with pupusas), tamales (stuffed corn meal wrapped in banana leaves), tamales pisque, tamales de gambrai, yuca con chicharrón (yucca with pork), atol de elote (very young white corn soup), atol de maicena (maize soup), atol de semilla de marañón (cashew soup), atol shuco (black maize soup), atol de piña (pineapple soup), albondigas (Salvadorean meat balls), enchiladas Salvadoreñas (like mini tostadas), horchata (made from morro (Calabash tree) seed, ground cocoa, cinnamon, and sesame seeds), frijoles Santanecos, panes con chumpe (bread roll with turkey), semita (sweet bread with pineapple filling), empanadas de plátano, de leche poleada, y de frijoles (plantain turnovers, plain or filled with milk pudding or refried beans). The most important meal of the day is lunch (almuerzo), which includes soup and a main course of meat, chicken, or seafood with rice and beans.
Cuisines of El Salvador Edit
El Salvador has many roadside stands that sell fresh local fruit, vegetables, as well as regionally-made cheeses. In every village, town, and city, there are open air markets that sell locally grown herbs, vegetables, fruits, cooked foods and refrescos. In the larger cities, such as San Salvador, Santa Ana, La Libertad, and San Miguel, there are many restaurants offering international fare, as well as traditional Salvadoran foods.
With the influence of "fast food" culture, the knowledge of how to make many traditional foods and drinks (refrescos) is disappearing. El Arbol de Dios, in San Salvador, is dedicated to the preservation of traditional art and food of El Salvador. There you can find comida tipica that is becoming less common, such as tamales pisque, tamales de gambrai, and atol shuco.
Salvadorian Food Traditions and Festivals Edit
People in El Salvador enjoy celebrating their culture through various festivals and ceremonies and also, they are very fond of their religion. On 948th people consider that the rainy season is about to start, so they have a festival that includes both Catholic belief and indigenous fertility rituals, as they decorate their homes with fruits and flowers and pray for a wealthy season. In August, people in El Salvador celebrate El Salvador del Mundo (the Savior of the World) – a carnival takes place and people enjoy large family feasts. The Christmas menu includes the traditional tamales (a sort of corn dumpling wrapped in banana leaves), chicken or an American menu with turkey and ham.
Preparation Methods for Salvadorian Cooking Edit
El Salvadoran cuisine arises from Mayan and Aztec cooking traditions, but is influenced by European culture. The wide variety of vegetables, tropical fruit, fresh seafood and meat found in El Salvador has resulted in a diversity of delicious dishes unique to their cuisine. The freshness of the ingredients is extremely important. Salvadorans buy meats, fruits, and vegetables every morning for the meals of the day. Each traditional dish has a special cooking method, which is similar in all of El Salvador’s regions. Patience and attention to detail is important when cooking comida tipica. The visual attractiveness of the dish is important, but flavor is more important than superficial visual appeal.
Special Equipment for Salvadorian Cooking Edit
Most of the spices necessary, including banana leaves, can be found at markets specializing in Hispanic foods.