If I had been a blogger several years ago, I probably would not be writing a blog post about trying new foods. I was such a picky eater that when I ordered a hamburger, I only requested a sesame seed bun, ground beef patty and a slice of cheese. Hamburger fixings such as lettuce, tomatoes, onions or pickles to accompany the sandwich was out of the question.
With that being said, I’m proud to say that I now love trying new types of food. My goal is to take a cooking class or a food tour in every city I travel too. Puerto Rico was no exception. I like to be immersed in the culture. Food is a huge part of the Puerto Rican culture. I booked a 3-hour tour with Flavors of San Juan.
I met the tour guide and several other tourists at Plazoleta Rafael Carrión in front of the Banco Popular to began the food tour.
A Taste Of Puerto Rico
We stopped at Cuatro Sombras which means 4 shades in English. Workers would plant coffee under shaded trees, hence the name. The coffee shop is known for is specialized coffee. They roast, grind and make coffee on a daily basis.I loved the cute heart shaped design inside of the coffee but I didn’t like the taste. To be fair, I am not a fan of coffee. The only time I drank coffee was in college when studying for final exams.Cuatros Sombras served us a ham and cheese croissant sandwich with guava paste. The saltiness of the ham and the sweetness of the guava was really tasty.
Puerto Rican Snacks
Cafe el Punto– Alcapurrias also known as dough fritters is a popular snack in Puerto Rico. It is made with yucca, green plantains, and a beef filling.We sampled Cevechi, this dish originated in Peru but is widely eaten in Puerto Rico. It is very light, and refreshing due to the citrus juice. Ingredients include onions, avocado, lemon juice, salt, cucumbers, and seafood. It was so delicious that I want to try this recipe for my next family outing.Senor Paleta sells sorbet and gelato popsicles. We were given a Mango Paleta. The best part of consuming this summer treat was filling guilt free because of its natural juice with no added sugars.
As we were walking we came across La Casa Estrecha. It is known as the smallest door in Puerto Rico. It is only 5 ft in height and is 2 stories high.Make sure to visit Fortaleza St. where the popular tourist attraction Paseo de Sombrillas is located. The umbrellas can certainly provide shelter from the rain but the Governor of Puerto Rico Ricardo Rosello sees it as a beautiful art installation.I had the opportunity to go to Plaza de Armas and sit next to Tite Curet Alonso. Mr. Alonso was a salsa composer who wrote over 2,000 songs. Although he composed thousands of songs, they were banned on Puerto Rican radio stations. In 2009, 695 songs were released, 6 years after his death. Legal battles continue to have further songs released from his salsa collection.
Popular Puerto Rican Dishes
At Cafe de Angel, we were served mofongo, chicken, rice, beans, and a glass of mojitos. Mofongos is a very popular dish and can be topped with meat or seafood. The main ingredient is plantain. It is picked, friend and seasoned to taste.
The tour occurs whether the sun shines or rain pours. We happened to get caught in the downpour but we made a fast dash to our last and final stop for dessert. At Casa Cortes Choco bar we were given hot chocolate and churros. In Puerto Rico, they eat cheese and chocolate together accompanied by dipping the two ingredients in hot chocolate. I know it sounds weird but it was actually tasty.At the end of the night, I was full of delicious food and snacks. I would recommend that you take the day tour so that you can actually see the city in all its glory. Which food or snack would you be interested in trying?