Colombian Street Food
1. Colombian Hot Chocolate and Cheese: A mug full of rich hot chocolate served with a salty cube of white cheese. “Chocolate Completo” adds bread as well to make it a complete breakfast. And, as weird as this sounds, you should dunk the cheese in your hot chocolate. The idea is that you wait until the cheese is melty and gooey and then you scoop it out of your mug. The mixture is a salty and sweet combination that is unlike anything else. A must try!
2. Obleas are a sweet treat. A wafer filled with arequipe (caramel) and jam (ours was mora–a blackberry sauce). We found street carts all over La Candelaria selling these sugary sandwiches. There were many variations as well. You could add whipped cream (crema de leche), peanuts, sprinkles, cheese, anything your heart desires! This quick treat was a great way to get a sugar rush at any point in your day.
3. Ajiaco Soup: Ajiaco is the capital’s dish made with chicken and three types of potato. The soup’s key ingredient is an herb, Galinsoga parviflora. The soup is usually served with cream on top, cilantro, and capers; rice and avocado on the side and a corn-on-the cob, which is dipped into the bowl. We enjoyed this comfort dish, as it felt like a warm, filling bowl of creamy soup.
4. Deep Fried Coconut (Coco Frito): This concoction is basically just sticks of coconut that have been fried and then wrapped up in a paper cone. They come out as a caramelized, gooey coconut blob. It is as sweet as it sounds, and probably only a few slices will satisfy your craving to try this delight.
5. Empanadas: A fluffy pastry dough filled with either meat, cheese or vegetables. Many countries have them. Colombia’s did not disappoint. They were flaky, savory, and sometimes greasy. There was usually an array of hot sauces to add as well. Plus, for less than $1, you can’t beat the price of this cheap and easy snack.
6. Churros: Another fried delight. Crispy dough that is deep fried and then covered in cinnamon and sugar. Colombia has very good churros, crispy on the outside and soft on the inside.
7. Getatina De Pata De Res: One of our Sunday morning finds at the Bogota Ciclovia. This cart offered up a gelatinous bone marrow fluff. It was like eating a microwaved marshmallow, but it had a vanilla extract flavor.
8. Torcha: Another of our Sunday morning finds at the Bogota Ciclovia. This guy was walking around with a tank full of foam. The strange part about it was that it tasted like wine.
9. Street Pizza: On many corners you can find a cheap pick-me-up snack. We indulged a few times in slices of pizza, including one that had corn, cilantro and pork. The pizza in Colombia usually had a thin crust and was made with fresh, local ingredients.