A Cornucopia of Fruit
Taste every fruit of every tree in the garden at least once. It is an insult to creation not to experience it fully. Temperance is wickedness. ~ Stephen Fry
I really was an explorer the first time I was here. In fact, I still am. There is food that I have never heard of or seen, never mind tasted. Guanabana, is a good example of this. Guanabana, known in English as sour sop, is reportedly the super cancer fighter of fruit. Even the food that I’m well acquainted with tastes differently. It’s all about freshness. There is nothing as sweet as a mango from the tropics. When food has to travel 3000 miles, something surely will be lacking. Whether it be flavor, color or shelf life, the essentials are gone.
For three years I kept hold of memories of a fresh juice kiosk in a mall here. I longed for this place like an old friend. There would be times when I’d say to Juan, “Ah, remember the fruit juice place? Remember the variety? I wish we could just have a……” High on my list of priorities, we went a few days after I arrived. I found out that the place is called Chucha.
The third best part (the first being freshness, the second being variety) of batidos, as they’re called here, is that they’re super cheap. The average price for a glass and a half is around $2.50. Trust me, if I lived closer to the mall, I’d go everyday just to try one of each.
The shelves are lined with, you guessed it, fruit. You won’t find powdered protein or wheat germ on the menu, just good old fashion fruit. And that’s just the way I like it.
My choice that day was mango. It was absolutely divine!
There are shortages of certain kinds of food in this country, but fruit isn’t one of them. There seems to be an abundant supply.
Chucha’s also has a sandwich counter and a full menu including empandas, fish and criollo (the national dish made of shredded beef, black beans, plantains, rice and arepas). Stopping by Chucha’s is the highlight of my trip to the mall. It’s kind of like my reward for having to fight the traffic and, of course, going to the mall in the first place.
Well, it’s definitely my intention to try as much tropical fruit (and various other forms of food) while I’m here. Don’t worry, I’ll be sure to let you know what I discover.