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Food Memories

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How to Enjoy Eating Amala and Abula

Ibadan, Oyo State Nigeria

Growing up was fun because of the people I shared my childhood with. My parents are both natives of Ibadan, so we eat Amala and Abula a lot in my family since they are from the same origin. I don't... Read more

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Submitted by eat_the_immigrant_nyc
Homemade, but found in local markets every Wed and Sat

When I first heard about the isolated village of Chajul from a photo pasted on the wall of a building in my hotel, I did some research. This village, located in the most remote and poorest part of NW Guatemala, spoke one of the rarest languages in the world, called Ixtal. On top of that: this village was the only place that served the very rare indigenous Mayan dish called boxboles. Enough said - I was on my way!

Boxboles are a traditional Mayan Guatemalan dish consisting of cornmeal that is flavored with spices, cheese, and sour cream, while almonds and chili peppers can also be included. The concoction is steamed inside and rolled in ayote leaves. After riding multiple chicken buses, shuttles, and walking solo in the rain up the mountainside, I finally made it to the isolated town of Chajul where I was served this magical dish.

Taste: Surprisingly, it was very, very spicy. The orange sauce on top is made purely from ground chili peppers but blended perfectly with the vegetables. The cornmeal inside the vegetables had a rough but delicious texture. It's traditionally served on select days of the week in the local market (Wednesday and Saturday mornings only), so make sure you keep that in mind if you ever choose to visit. Cheers to adventure and great food!


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