Westernization of our available food

Maybe I’m living in the wrong side of town!?

Since I moved back to Guatemala, I’ve found rather difficult to eat regional, autochthonous, or native foods.

If you have had the pleasure of having been to France, I’m sure you did not have trouble finding Crêpes, or those delicious Stuffed Artichokes (love those from Bretagne), or if you have been to China, there is no difficulty in finding dumplings or any regional food.

If you have been to Guatemala, probably you left without trying any “real” regional food.  Not long ago, two friends of mine flew from the States to visit me. They arrived late at night, I wanted to have them eat an authentic Guatemalan meal as their first meal in the country. I failed to find a restaurant offering it. Their first meal in the country was T Bell.

Today I got stuck home, I had to go find something quick to eat. There are tacos (Mexican of origin), hot dogs, shucos (Guatemalan version of a Hot Dog), but nothing really regional. I ended up getting a burger (I know, I’m pathetic).

Don’t take me wrong; there is a lot of different foods available here in Guatemala, fine cuisine, international restaurants; but almost none offering autochthonous styles. Believe me! This far; I only know of five restaurant here in the city that feature some (not the entire menu) real Guatemalan dishes.

Oh, the friends I mention failed to try any regional Guatemalan food during their 7 days stay, except for some Cocos Locos we drank in Izabal.

Authentic Guatemalan Food

© 2013, Eli Orozco. All rights reserved.

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  • Begonia

    That is so sad! Don’t you at least have street vendors that sell tamales or tamalitos nearby? I’m particularly distressed that your friends didn’t try any Guatemalan dishes. I’m such a food-tourist, that trying the local specialties is practically half the adventure for me.

    Maybe you need to find a guy like my suegro! He delivers refacciones to people in the Antigua area by moto.

    • I agree with you Begonia, although the other restaurants are there for when the locals when to try something different. On the other hand, there are people who would never try anything different, they just want to eat the same fast food as they eat at home.
      El 16/08/2013, a las 21:52, Disqus escribió:

  • Elí Orozco

    Hello Again Begonia.
    They sell Tamales on Saturday. Something: Most people, tourist or nationals, are unaware that most available food is not necessarily regional. In Antigua there is a lot (LOT) of options, yes; many with regional cuisine, but honestly, most restaurants that feature Guatemalan food in La Antigua offer a Westernized version of national dishes.
    😀 This is just a aesthetic thing I’ve notice in a lot of restaurants in La Antigua: When they offer you a “Desayuno Chapin” Guatemalan Breakfast; many times they won’t bring you Tortillas, or (!) a lot of times they put Nachos on top of them Frijoles! Nachos are of Mexican origin!

    • Obviously Elí, it’s a tourist in Antigua Guatemala and does not know where we the locals eat the real authentic Guatemalan food. 😉
      El 17/08/2013, a las 12:22, Disqus escribió:

      • Begonia

        ……and many of those restaurants are owned by foreigners, and it may
        have been years since they themselves have had an “authentic desayuno
        chapin”.