We took the opportunity of Juan Diego and Ana Maria’s amazing kitchen to prepare and share a few home cooked meals. Saturday, Matt made his (favorite!) breakfast tacos, something new for both Ana Maria & Juan Diego. They enjoyed it so much that we ended up leaving them the recipe. Sunday, Ana Maria & Juan Diego prepared a bit of breakfast typical to their region. Ana Maria, a Medellin native, cut prepared fruits (the tropical fruit has been amazing) and toasted some arepas. She eats arepas as we would toast – something that you can top with anything from queso, jam, to butter. Juan Diego is from Bucaramanga and prepared tamales typical of his hometown. Matt and I are accustomed to eating Mexican tamales – masa wrapped in corn husks, but these Colombian tamales were wrapped in banana leaves.
If it were completely up to Juan Diego, we would have eaten his favorite breakfast meal from his region, Calentado. Calentado is a soup that contains beef, potatoes, eggs, arepas, rice, bacon (basically everything you could ever possibly eat for breakfast combined in a soup). Ana Maria quickly vetoed that idea, so we will have to save that for another day.
Two hours east, we stayed in Guatape with Luis, a Dusseldorf, Germany transplant who moved to Guatape to be the town’s first rowing coach. It has been difficult to find good whole wheat bread in the land of sweet breads, so I was glad Luis offered to make some homemade wheat bread. Both the nights we were there, he prepared fresh wheat bread for breakfast the next day. The bread was accompanied by the usual suspects – jam and and butter, but he also had awesome spicy mustard from his hometown in Germany as well as the popular Colombian topping, arequipe (caramel).
Breakfast is a must for both of us and an important start to our day. As we sat in Guayaquil, Ecuador eating fish soup for breakfast (the only option on the few menus we passed), we contemplated how each culture has their own distinct morning routine. This is something we will continue to explore during our travels.