Two weeks ago, I embarked on a wonderful trip to the lovely country of Nicaragua. A very good friend of ours lives in Managua, so we decided to go visit him, and make a vacation out of it. And vacation we did!
Simply incredible. 🙂
Nicaragua is a beautiful country, with gorgeous lakes, beautiful beaches, and volcanoes – both active and inactive. We got to see some of the beauty of this country, but also the extreme poverty. The drive from the capital to the beach town of San Juan del Sur provided incredible views, but also a reminder that this country is still a very underdeveloped one.
I never felt unsafe there, though; particularly because I was with several native Nicaraguans and Spanish-speakers who served as my translators and tour guides. I only wished I was fluent in Spanish myself! I did attempt some Spanish, but my accent no es bueno. 🙂
I DO speak fluent foodie, though, and set my sights on exploring the flavors of Nicaragua. Our first pit stop took us to a little place called El Pipe, where they are known for their Quesillos, a typical Nicaraguan dish.
Quesillos are essentially tortillas wrapped around cheese, onions and cream – clearly a low-cal dish, but delicious nonetheless. They’re served to you on a plate, in a plastic bag. It might sound a bit odd, but believe me, you want that plastic bag to keep in all that yummy, cheesy sauce.
You open the plastic bag, shimmy it down a bit to expose your burrito-resembling Quesillo, and top it with the fresh chili sauce provided to you in a small bowl.
Que rico! It’s like a gooey, cheesy present, just waiting to be unwrapped.
You can also get your Quesillo flat on a plate, so that you can use a knife and a fork, but I think I preferred the bag-version myself. 🙂
We washed them down with glasses of Cacao – basically chocolate milk, but BETTER! You could taste the fresh, roasted cacao with every sip of this frosty drink. For the rest of the trip, as soon as we sat down at a restaurant, I immediately scanned the menu to see if it was listed there. Yet this first Cacao experience was most certainly the best.
I enjoyed my Cacao drink SO much that my goal in the near term is to come up with a recipe to share with you, so that you too can enjoy the chocolatey goodness! I had my translators ask how this drink was made, and took copious notes (once they translated it for me, of course), so look for a recipe to come soon!