- Bolivian cuisine
Bolivian cuisine stems mainly from the combination of Spanish cuisine with traditional native Bolivian ingredients, with later influences from Germans, Italians, Basques, Croats, Russians, Poles, due to the arrival of immigrants from those countries. The three traditional staples of Bolivian cuisine are corn, potatoes and beans. These ingredients have been combined with a number of staples brought by the Spanish, such as rice, wheat and meat, such as beef, pork and chicken.
- Chicha and chicha morada
- Guinea pig, aka Cuy
- Pique macho
- Plato paceño
- Green Iguana
- Roasted Duck
Bolivians tend to eat a very simple breakfast, usually consisting of tea or sometimes coffee, and marraqueta bread rolls. Occasionally, cheese, honey or jam is taken. A more native breakfast beverage is api, also known as chicha morada, served hot. In the market of Copacabana, buñuelos, drizzled with cane syrup, are an extremely popular breakfast treat. Much like in the U.S., children are often served breakfast cereal and milk in the morning. This sort of breakfast is becoming popular with Bolivian adults as well.
Since breakfast is usually very light and simple, the customary Bolivian snack at 10:30 AM is an empanada known as the salteña, often consumed with more api, coffee, or a soft drink such as a Coca-Cola or a Papaya Salvietti.
Almuerzo is the most important meal of the Bolivian day, so much so that daily life tends to revolve around it. Workers return home to dine on sopa y segundo, the obligatory course order. Sometimes a green salad is offered as an opener, then soup, then the main course. Lunch is taken at a leisurely pace and is traditionally followed by a nap, the oft-referred siesta.
Strangely, and very much like the British, Bolivians observe an afternoon tea break. Cups of black tea are usually taken with biscuits such as galletas Maria. Often in place of the more common black tea, yerba maté is drunk.
La cena is a lighter, much more informal affair than lunch that typically takes place later than a typical American supper -- usually 8 PM or later. Popular among many Bolivians for dinner is ramen noodles, often combined with leftovers from almuerzo, or merely the leftovers themselves.
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