This Ecuadorian empanadas recipe is more than just about a tasty snack.
It’s a funny thing when you decide to stay somewhere a bit longer. You are no longer rushed to see all the items on the “must do” list and you can begin to relax.
So that’s what I’ve been doing.
I rented an apartment in Canoa and there’s a hammock in my kitchen!
I’ve also been cooking which means interacting with people in a different way as I try to figure out where I can find ingredients.
It’s so different than Cuenca in the Andes. Guess what, in a small coastal town of 3000 people. I’ve learned spinach only comes on Thursdays.
And sometimes it doesn’t come.
Canoa is the type of place where most just come for a weekend.
So now that I have been here a few weeks people are more comfortable approaching me and asking why I’m still here.
I’ve made friends.
These friends seem to think I can’t cook so they’ll come over with fish and make me lunch.
I like to cook but I’m not complaining.
This is why I wanted to stay.
And a few nights ago it was someone’s birthday party and so I was invited to salsa dance all night in the sandy lot of backyard a couple blocks from the beach.
I met more people and their uncles and aunts and grandparents and children and cousins and more cousins and wait more cousins.
After graciously accepting people’s offers of aguardiente or beer shots it was past midnight which meant time for food and I was handed the best empanada I have ever eaten.
It was so good I ate 7 of them.
And because most of the town now knew that I was shooting food videos, the cook offered her services.
I came over later in the week and she showed me how to make empanadas.
Just as long as her face didn’t appear in the video.
Cheese Empanadas Recipe
This is not one of my best videos. But it is one of the most special because I was invited into someone’s home.
She patiently allowed me to fuss around her with the video.
Afterwards when I realized I didn’t capture the sugar being tossed onto the freshly fried plate of empanadas she made me more.
This is why food of a country is so much more important to me than hiking a volcano or visiting an art gallery.
I’m able to share something with people who I would never have met otherwise.
Initially we don’t believe we have much in common except a mutual love for food and that begins the conversation.
Eventually you realize you have more in common than you think.