Breakfast culture says a lot about a place.
There are countries that skip it – grabbing coffee to go – here in Antioquia breakfast is a “thing” .
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, I’m all for that.
Breakfast ranges from a seemingly endless array of corn and maíz pastries, deep fried and stuffed with cheeses, meats, veg and fruit, to a full-on sit down breakfast.
From 06:00 in the morning onwards many street side cafe offer hot, filling breakfasts washed down by a tinto (strong local black coffee).
For the all inclusive breakfast you will get a steaming mug of aromatic canela infused hot chocolate, not from instant powder, rather melted down from dark rich bars.
This way they are able to create a peppy, comforting wake up drink, liquid optimism, helping you meet the day’s challenges head on.
You then get an arepa (a toasted flat corn/maize bread).
Calentado (rice cooked in tasty stock with beans) and typically a choice of pulled pork, BBQ beef, chicken, or my cholesterol bomb favourite, el chicharrón (pork belly scratching).
Last but not least a mound of scrambled eggs and pico de gallo (literally cock’s beak – a fine chopped tomato, cucumber, cilantro, garlic and onion salad mix), with additional hot spicy sauce (if you are feeling brave!).
All this for around $1.59 USD (5000 COP)….totes bonkers …but true!
(…oh and did I forget you also get a slab of cheese?!).
Maybe that is the idea?
Traditionally the Paisa (Antioquian) farm hands, would be heading off, in the early hours, to coffee plantations for gruelling work, on impossibly steep Andean foothills.
The Paisa are known for being entrepreneurial and hard working, so it’s only natural they breakfast accordingly.
Your Breakfast Language Pack:
tinto – strong local black coffee.
arepa – a toasted flat corn/maize bread.
calentado – rice cooked in tasty stock with beans.
chicharrón – succulent pork belly scratching.
pico de gallo – literally cock’s beak – a fine chopped tomato, cucumber, cilantro, garlic and onion salad mix.
Empanada de carne – meat pasty.
Panzarotte – deep fried ball of corn stuffed with cheese ham or meat.
Res – beef.
Cerdo – pork.
Pollo – chicken.
Deditos de queso – pastry fingers stuffed with melted cheese.