Whether you visit Medellin and it’s “eternal spring,” the highland climate of Bogota or the tropical paradise found in the historic port city of Cartagena, you are bound to find a friendly face and an nice hot plate of the region’s specialty.
Colombian cuisine varies depending on the different regions of the country. Colombian dishes are comforting, rich, and full of flavor. You will find a lot of seafood and green plantain dishes in the coastal regions and more beef, pork, and chicken dishes in the rest of the country
Colombia is not a paradise for those who live a vegetarian lifestyle because the Colombian diet includes a lot of meat. In the coastal areas. you will find a good variety of fish, lobster, and seafood that is often prepared with a sauce made out of coconut milk. The presence of fresh fruit is overwhelming and some of the varieties you have probably never heard of before.
When you think of Colombia, does the image of Juan Valdez come to mind when you think about Colombian coffee? If so, there is a reason for that. The Federation of Colombian Coffee Growers created him in a brilliant marketing move in 1958 to be the “face” of the country’s coffee to the rest of the world. Yes, Juan is kind of a cliche at this point, but the campaign was successful!
Today, Colombia stands at an impressive #3 in the world for coffee production after Brazil and Vietnam. What differentiates Colombian coffee, is that it tends to grow the more difficult, and often more prized, Arabica coffee bean rather than the higher yielding Robusta beans.
If you visit coffee country around the town of Armenia, you will see plantation hills covered with coffee bushes. In the Sierra Nevada mountains, you will find an occasional bush planted by an indigenous family trying to diversify their income stream. Coffee is just everywhere in Colombia.
Here’s a surprising coffee factoid for ya: 100 kilos of picked coffee berries yields only 13 kilos of final product roasted beans. Coffee pickers are paid 500 pesos (which would be about $0.25 American dollars) per kilo of beans. In one day, a good coffee picker could make around $20-$25 from picking 100 kilos of beans.
Colombia has great food, filled with beautiful scenery, and the people of Colombia are hard working people. But, the country does have it’s problems. The country has had a bad reputation for many years due to the drug trade, cartels, and violence. But it has improved drastically in the last 15 years. For five decades, Colombia has been at war with Marxist insurgents. Large areas of the country are under the control of criminal organizations, drug cartels, revolutionaries, and paramilitary groups. The people of Colombia suffer from this conflict that has lasted for decades, but Christians are specially vulnerable to such hostilities.
Please watch the video from CBN News about the Marxist insurgents and the troubles that Christians face in this country.
How Can You Pray For Colombia
- Pray for peace and hope for Christians that are threatened by criminal and guerrilla groups.
- Pray for Christ to comfort believers whose family members are murdered for their faith.
- Pray that Christians would have grace to forgive those who displace them from their homes.
About Alfajores (Dulce de Leche Cookies)
Alfajores are sandwich cookies filled with dulce de leche, which is a creamy caramel confection made from milk and sugar (or Coconut Milk for a dairy free version). Alfajores originated in the Middle East. The Spaniards acquired their Alfajor habit from the Moors, and brought it to South America, where Alfajores have become an institution.
The classic Alfajor is made out of dough containing flour, butter, and eggs. After baking, two round cookies are sandwiched together with a dollop of dulce de leche.
The word Alfajor stems from the Arabic al-hasú, which means filled or stuffed.
These cookies are not too sweet, and have a delicate, soft, and crumbly texture. Combined with the dulce de leche filling, and rolled in coconut, it is the perfect balance of textures and flavors.