I'm not a big meat eater and it was surprisingly easy to get by without eating much meat, especially in Antigua. One day I was craving red meat, so I ordered a cheeseburger and the waiter asked me if I wanted it "con jamon (ham) and queso (cheese)." I said I didn't want ham, so I received a hamburger bun with a smear of mayonnaise and a slice of American cheese (American cheese is everywhere). I also had a bad encounter with quesadillas made from canned cheese. I guess the lesson here is that Guatemala is really not a good place to go if you like decent cheese. Aside from that, the majority of the food I ate was good and cheap--really cheap, about $3-$4 a meal, especially outside of the cities. Huge portions, relatively healthy (despite the rampant popularity of fried chicken), and amazingly spicy.
Anyway, if you're ever in Antigua, Guatemala I recommend Rainbow Cafe; it's a bar, bookstore and restaurant (with live music every night of the week). I bought and traded so many books during my two weeks there that the bookstore clerk knew me by name! They also have lectures on Tuesdays at 5:30: I went to a really interesting one given by MuJER, an organization that provides support to Guatemalan sex workers.
I was itching to cook once I got back, especially now that so many vegetables are in season; tomatoes, zucchini, squash, everything good, really. I made this awesome recipe last night, and tonight I made a concoction of couscous, chicken, spinach and asparagus. Look for the recipe in the next few days. For now, here are a few pictures from my trip:
|man with 4 dogs on his bike|
|the ruins at tikal in northern guatemala|
|market in chichicastenango|
|how tortillas are traditionally made|
|little girls in a village on lake atitlan|