Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Quito food tour, Summer 2012, Part II: A stroll through Quito's Old City

My guide next drove me to the Old City, where he took me to a number of food places I would not have even spotted.

One was place selling all kinds of nuts and similar snacks. Santiago showed me one - carmalized corn kernels - that he had me popping into my mouth. He was popping some in, too. An addictive treat - and be aware that in Ecuador corn comes in many sizes, including large ones we don't normally see (unless you go to Ecuadorean or other Latin shops in Jackson Heights or other neighborhoods serving this community. Here are a few snacks we saw - you'll recognize the huaraches, like tamales, on the bottom.

It turns out their nickname is "mierda de perro," or sometimes "caca de perro." Yup, dog shit. I even checked on line to make sure Santiago wasn't "playing" me, and he wasn't.  We went to one of Quito's oldest coffee markets, owned by one family. How I would have liked to buy some beans but it didn't make sense they wouldn't stay fresh...

I need to mention one little discovery of my own near these two places: An Indian man selling samosas on teh street. He described them as "Indian empanadas," which is certainly true: samosas are just another version of the stuffed dough savories we see in just about every culture. (Can you think of one that doesn't have some sort of stuffed dough goody?)
Here's a photo of him...  I'll be posting about street food in Quito on another post, so you'll see that shortly!

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