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If you are planning to visit Bolivia in a small budget, there is no need to worry about food. The typical Bolivian dishes are described to be cheap, filing and delicious. Although this is case, the choices are not diverse as its landscape. It is not clearly a result of lowlands and of the Andes Mountain. Mostly their standard food is derived from staple potatoes, rice and corn meals. It is definitely worth to try them and it is definitely best way to know more about its history and daily lifestyle. Bolivia is considered as a poor country but their locals don’t starve except if there is severe drought. Even if the country relies mostly on agriculture, Bolivians are sticking to monotonous diets; in particular young ones are undernourished. In some regions especially on the countryside, vegetables are unheard. There are about 200 varieties of potatoes in Bolivia however the majority is not cultivated. The most common are yellow sweet potatoes and freeze dried ones.
Aside from potatoes, corns are also produced in the country. Chicha is a cheap and traditional alcohol drink that is so popular. There are two types of snacks that you should try – saltenas and empanadas. The pastry shells are filled with spices, potatoes, eggs and olives. These are generally available everywhere. They are often served with coffee especially in mid mornings. Another popular item is the salchipapa. It is a combination of French fries and frankfurter. A perfect meal to start the day is by purchasing api and pastel. Api is made from corn enhanced by spices. Pastel is a deep fried snack filled with cheese and chicken or beef.
The typical Bolivian dinner is very cheap. It is similar to the lunch but in small portions. Take away meals like fried chicken with french fries are typical. Pizza is also a favorite among tourists and locals around. There are quite a number of pizzerias that are found in major cities. Pique Machos is scrumptious dish that originated in Cochabamba. It is spicy with small pieces of meat, potatoes, eggs and sausages. The authentic ones are top with blazing peppers.
The Chicharron are also considered to be found everywhere. These are pieces of pork cooked in iron pots. They are served with rice and potatoes. Although it doesn’t look attractive, it is very tasty. In most menus, you will found Llama. This is much tougher compared to other red meat. Be sure that it is well prepared. There are dressings that are made for this meal. Papas a la Huancaina originated from Peru but it is famous in most parts of the city. It is a salad consisted of vegetables, boiled potatoes, peanut dressing, cheese and eggs. Most meals are often served with llagua which is a very spicy sauce.
By Ina K