Instead of sharing what I ate in a day, I’m instead giving you a taste (see what I did there?) of what I ate while I was in Honduras. I didn’t take that many photos of my meals because I was usually too hungry from being so busy, but I did snap a few of my favorites.
The first thing you need to know about Honduran cuisine is that there are influences from different cultures, including the Spanish settlers, African slaves and indigenous people. Some staples are tortillas, beans, rice, plantains, native vegetables, and tropical fruit (hello, mangoes!) Meat and fish are also incorporated, but of course I went without. In particular, the north coast of Honduras has fresh and salt water fishing. (Read more about the north coast and Garífuna people in this post.)
Here are a few of my favorite meals from the week:
Although I almost never eat savory breakfasts at home, I enjoy them immensely in Honduras: seasoned beans with fresh tortillas, which I topped with the avocado. We did have melon and pineapple on the side for a little something sweet.
I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention baleadas, the most famous national dish and one of the best breakfasts ever. Baleadas, in their simplest form, are tortillas filled with mashed or refried beans, and maybe some cheese. If you want to go all out, you can add things like eggs, avocado, hot sauce….They’re fast, filling and cheap.
These are tortillas con quesillo: cheese sandwiched between two tortillas and then pan-fried. A Honduran grilled cheese, if you will. It came with a mild tomato salsa and avocado. Pineapple graced our plates many times that week, and I usually went back to seconds. I always went back for seconds or thirds of coffee.
This was the plato vegetariano served at Las Tejas, a restaurant we sometimes eat at in Valle de Ángeles. It included sweet plantains (one of my favorites!), rice, mashed beans, two types of cheese (the one is a little buttery), and salad. (I didn’t end up eating the lettuce, because in some restaurants the lettuce isn’t as clean as others, and I didn’t want to take any chances.)
In Honduras, eating at a fast food restaurant in Tegucigalpa is a treat (read more here.) When we shopped for supplies in Tegucigalpa at Walmart and PriceSmart (which is like Costco), we took our Honduran friends to McDonald’s. It’s the one time a year I eat McDonald’s and I’m not afraid to say it tastes good. The fries are just like the ones I remember from growing up, salty but not too salty. They also have McFlurries that you can’t get at the McDonald’s back home; this year they had Snickers, and three years ago I got Hershey’s Cookies ‘n’ Cream. That about sums up the vegetarian options, though.
I know this is by no means an extensive list of what I ate…I didn’t even get to talk about Imperial vs. Salva Vida beer choices…but these are pretty typical dishes. Perhaps on my next trip I’ll do more extensive documentation, but until then, I’ll keep trying to make fried plantains as good as I had last week.