Let’s find out the origins, the ingredients and the original recipe of the arepas, the typical Venezuelan dish.
Let’s go to South America to discover a tasty typical dish from Venezuela: arepas. It is a small round bread made with water, salt and corn flour. You can eat them on their own and with sweet or savoury fillings. They are also deliciously crunchy: once you try one, you can won’t stop!
Arepas: their origin
This food is the symbol of the national cooking tradition: in the past, the indigenous people already ate them. They cooked corn shells on stones and ate them without fillings. Time helped improving the recipe, both in the cooking method and in the fillings.
Nowadays, every Venezuelan region has its own version and recipe of this popular bread. For example, in Caracas people eat it filled with scrambled eggs, black beans, cheese, beef or chicken ham and avocado. Instead, on the coast and in the islands people stuff arepas with fish, shrimps, octopus or shark meat.
Arepas value in the Venezuelan society
This food is both tasty and fundamental for locals, because it is eaten in different social events, everywhere and always. In the mornign or at night, during meals or as a snack. At work, at the stadium, after the gym, at the disco or at a concert.
The areparas (the places where this products is cooked and sold) can be kiosks on the streets or high and medium level restaurants. This is not only the typical dish of this country, but it is an actual tradition with its own holiday: September, 14th is World Arepa Day.
How to make arepas at home: the original recipe
Here’s how to make this traditional and tasty food at home. The recipe is very easy and fast.
Ingredients for 4 people
– 250g of corn flour
– 500ml of water
– 1 pinch of salt
In a bowl, use a wooden spoon to mix the water with salt and the corn flour. Finish mixing with your hands, until the dough is compact but soft. Leave aside for at least 15 minutes. Then, shape little balls with your hand and press them into disks (1,5mm thick). Cook them on a low heat in a no-stick pan with some oil for about 4 minutes for each side, until golden.
Serve them hot: they can be a side dish or you can stuff them as if they were sandwiches. They taste really good also with sweet fillings, for example chocolate or jam.
You can also try Colombian arepas: the dough is the same, but you need to spread butter and cheese between to disks. Cook them in the pan until the cheese melts. After having cooked them, you can close them in a plastic bag and store them in the freezer.
Photo source: https://pixabay.com/it/arepa-arepas-colazione-venezuela-1379236/, https://pixabay.com/it/mais-chef-cucina-colombia-cibo-457153/