Hola! Traditional Cuban cuisine consists of rice, beans, and a protein-typically chicken, fish, pork, or shredded beef. Although food rations exist, locals have the option of purchasing additional food items from a neighborhood market. Rice, beans, bread, chicken, flour, oil, and milk are provided monthly by the government. One might think Cuban food is bland, but that’s quite the contrary. I experienced dishes full of color and flavor that would give American chefs a run for their money.
Since Cubans are restricted to owning only one property in the city, many restaurants are located in homes. Called paladars, these small restaurants offer locals and tourists a variety of casual dining options.
Two main beers are brewed in Cuba: Cristal and Bucanero. Cristal is a light, refreshing beer perfect on a hot summer day or throwing back a few with friends. Slightly heavier and amber, Bucanero compliments protein dishes and is great for sipping. When dining in Cuba, most restaurants welcome you with a “house” cocktail. Mojitos and daiquiris are the most common welcome drinks and set the mood for the rest of the meal. I could definitely get used to this custom!
Stay tuned for more Cuban adventures.