Salvadoran recipe: Pupusas de Chicharan and Cartido

Pupusas with cartido on top and salsa rojo on the side. Photo by Cathy Fung

I once cycled for eight hours in Washington, D.C., one day to get puppies.

The excuse I gave everyone was that I wanted to see cherry blossoms and meet college friends, but to be honest: those were secondary. The real reason was that it had been more than three years since I had been born, and I was living in a time that seemed like a very sad, homogeneous city. I really needed something More.

Stepping into Gloria Pupusaria on Fourteenth Street in Columbia Heights, it looked like the wall coming home from Selina fan art to jukebox blasting. Ranches The music, however, for the most part, was that my food was served directly from my childhood kitchen with a Chinese “longevity” pattern on the melamine plate.

In the early 190’s, DC and the United States in general began to see the first significant wave of immigration from El Salvador after the 1979 Salvadoran Civil War. The new Salvadoran immigrants, “partly because of the concentration of Hispanic business in the vicinity, but also because the old patterns of daily and weekly food shopping have found a place in a new world market that provides a comfortable element of tradition – the food being sold And The way they are sold, from display to language. ”

Thirty-five years later, gentrification has significantly changed makeup Adams Morgan. DC’s Latino Hub is now Columbia Heights and Mount Place, with more development and food options if you venture out into the suburbs of Maryland.

Inside a white and red tent, a woman is slicing something in her hand with a kitchen knife.

Rita Torres Gonzalez prepares food at the 1985 Smithsonian Folklife Festival.

Photo by Brenda Gilmore, Ralph Rinzler Folklife Archive

Invert through it Smithsonian Folklife Cookbook, It is interesting to think about the time and place of describing Pipusas as “Salvadoran pie” to the common people. Featured in the 1985 Folklife Festival program Cultural preservation, Created by local guest chef Rita Torres Gonzalez Pork loin (grilledled pork stuffed masala patties) and Like For visitors to the National Mall that year (fermented cabbage slow).

As program curator Marjorie Hunt writes, “If the American folklore festival policy was inherent in cultural preservation [now the Smithsonian Folklife Festival] Since its inception in 17 [this] Questions from different perspectives. The exhibition examines the context in which cultural preservation has become a necessary concern; It has documented efforts on the part of tradition keepers to preserve their own culture in the face of changing social and physical environments; And it has explored the efforts of U.S. public cultural institutions to address the problem of cultural preservation.

I chose this dish because I like this pattern: in our efforts to preserve and celebrate other cultures, bits and pieces are woven into our lives until they become an indescribable part of us. Us. Because how do you make a pre-Columbian dish from El Salvador in Washington, D.C., to live in the home of the daughter of Chinese immigrants from California?

Rice, vegetables, meat and a puppies are coming out with a Chinese pattern and a plastic fork around the rim on a plate.

Pupusa dish on a Chinese melamine plate at Gloria Pupusaria, Washington, DC

Photo by Cathy Fung

Chicharan Pupusas

The recipe of the genre Torres Gonzalez, adapted by Cathy Fung

Note from the kitchen: My adaptation comes from watching countless videos online. As for the techniques of how to fill the flour, I suggest you do the same. In this video, the chef just makes two tortillas, one fills and the other puts on it. Mind. Blow.


2 pounds pork shoulder, cut into 1 1/2 inch pieces (fatty pieces are ok)
1 medium onion
1 green bell pepper
1 large tomato
2 cups flour
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 1/2 cups hot water, plus more as needed
1 cup water, room temperature
1 tablespoon vegetable oil


Meat you cut meat generously with salt. Add the pork to a large frying pan over low to medium heat and cook. If necessary, start the pan with a small amount of vegetable oil. Stir the meat occasionally so that it turns brown on all sides. When the meat turns golden brown all around, remove the meat using a slotted spoon. Remove the fat from the pan, save enough to coat the bottom of the pan.

Fill the dried pork pieces and bubbles with oil.

Cut onion, bell pepper and tomato into large pieces. Using a food processor or blender, grind the pork with the vegetables (in batches, if needed) until there is no visible portion. Taste and spice combination.

Return the greased pan to medium high heat. Cook the mixture of pork and vegetables until the moisture is gone, check the spices as you go. Remove to a bowl to cool. Will be significantly more admitted than dough. You can adjust the amount of masala by making more or freeze the chicharan later.

In a medium mixing bowl, add Masa Harina, a pinch of salt and one tablespoon of oil. Start by adding 1 cup of hot water per month, if you can’t handle the heat with your bare hands, use a wooden spoon and add the remaining half cup as needed. If the flour is too dry and cracks easily, add water with a tablespoon until the flour is soft. Leave on for at least 15 minutes and rest.

Preheat a grill or cast iron pan over medium heat. Prepare one bowl of water and one tablespoon of oil. Divide the flour into 9 equal balls, roughly the size of a golf ball. Wet your hands in a mixture of water / oil. With the ball in one hand, make an indentation with your thumb and roll the flour until a cup is formed. Close the filling by filling approximately two tablespoons and turn the filling upside down and into a smooth ball. Slowly and evenly flatten the ball in a circle, about 4 inches in diameter. Wet hands as needed to prevent mascara from sticking to your hands.

Place the puppies on an uncooked frying pan and cook. Treat the first popcorn like the first pancake to adjust the heat. Serve with cartido and salsa ros.

Variety: Puppies are usually refrigerated beans, cheese, Pheasants Flowers, or any combination of the above. My personal favorite is Rebellion, Which is chicharan, beans and cheese.


Like Always available for puppies, it’s waiting for you at the table from a sit-down restaurant or from a stand on the side of the road, where it will come in some plastic bags with some bagged salsa. If you have nothing but time, try your hand at the Cortido recipe of bread Torres Gonzalez included in making vinegar. If you’re a little more impatient like me, I’ve provided a quick pickle recipe.

Be careful, a whole head of cabbage gives about two quarts of cartido. Although it lasts a while, be prepared to add it to other foods, such as rice and sausage or a breakfast sandwich such as an egg patty and toasted bread with salsa verd.

Chopped green cabbage, orange carrots, purple onions, and green peppers are ready for pickling.

After chopping the cartido vegetables

Photo by Cathy Fung

Cartido (fermented cabbage slow)

Recipe Rita Torres Gonzalez


1 head cabbage, finely chopped
3 carrots, grated
1 radish, fried
1 small hot pepper, chutney
Oil, for frying
1 onion, finely chopped
1 green pepper, finely chopped
The Oregon pinch

Pineapple vinegar:
1 pineapple
Grapes, chickpeas
1 Peach, chopped, peeled
Oregano pinch, chick


Cover the cabbage, carrots and radishes with hot water and let set for 30 minutes. Drain.

Heat oil and fry with onion, black pepper, oregano and salt. Combine with the cabbage mixture. Add the pineapple vinegar.

Method 1: Peel the pineapple. Let the peel dry in the sun or on the radiator for a few days. Put in a jar with water and let sit for a few weeks. Peel a squash, grate it and squeeze the juice. Use liquid as vinegar.

Method 2: Cut the pineapple into pieces. Combine a handful of grapes, peaches, oregano, and water in a jar. Let sit for several days. Use liquid as vinegar.

Quick like

Recipe adapted by Kathy Fung


1 head cabbage, finely chopped
3 carrots, grated
2 long green peppers, jalpeno or serano, optional
1 red onion, finely chopped
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 cup white distilled vinegar, or as needed
1 cup water


Fill a large strainer with chopped cabbage, generously sprinkle with salt and toss. Let sit on top of the sink or bowl for 30 minutes or until the rest of the vegetables are ready.

After 30 minutes, rinse the cabbage in water, draining out the excess water. In a large bowl add all the vegetables and toss thoroughly. Add 1 cup vinegar and 1 cup water to the bowl. Add the oregano and toss the vegetables so that everything is coated. Taste, and adjust to salt. When making pupas, keep it at room temperature and let it sit. Check again within an hour of toasting and seasoning if necessary. Serve with puppies.

Three dishes: a pile of finished pupusas, curtido slaw, and a full serving with pupusas, curtido, and red sauce.

Kathy Fung is the food coordinator of the Smithsonian Folklife Festival and the manager of the exhibition kitchen at the National Museum of American History. With a bachelor’s degree in anthropology and baking and pastry art, he has worked as an ompa lumpa, pastry cook and butcher at various food establishments in the DC area.

Source link

Related Articles

Back to top button