No, we're not in El Salvador; we're still in Las Vegas. Last time we were here, however, we noticed several restaurants offering “pupusas”. We thought octopus … no, that's pulpo. Pupa is Spanish for blister … nah, they weren't serving blisters. It's not a papoose nor a life stage of a butterfly nor a doll (Latin). So, exactly what the heck's a pupusa? We decided we'd try Las Pupusas for lunch and find out.
Pupusas, we soon discovered, are a Salvadoran specialty and I can only describe them as stuffed soft tacos. I ordered a pollo con queso pupusa (chicken and cheese) and a calabaza con queso (zucchini and cheese). David and Mary ordered pupusas revueltas (a mix of pork, beans and cheese). They were served with a side of churtido (cabbage slaw with a hot pepper kick) and a tangy tomato sauce. Delicious!
Salvadorans in Las Vegas? Evidently, there's a fairly large population of Salvadorans here … considered to be the second largest Hispanic group in Las Vegas. The restaurant was busy, even at 2pm on a mid-week day, with mostly Latino customers. A Spanish soap opera played on the TV. Spanish conversations, soft and melodic, could be heard all around us. The décor included pictures of El Salvador … lots of them. We looked and ate and then thought … we've never visited El Salvador. We've never really spent any time in Central America at all except for Panama.
Now this is a dangerous thing for us … seeing beautiful beaches and vibrant cities and cultures we've never seen before. It got us thinking. Hmmm … El Salvador …. but it's on the Pacific side of the Panama Canal! It also has the dubious honor of being the world's new murder capital.
Okay, okay … next time lunch at Mickey D's.