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Colombian Food recommendations


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Heading in a few days to Cartagena on the Celebrity Reflection and was wondering if anyone had any tips on what foods to try there and if it is safe to eat from the vendors or to just stick with the restaurants. Any recommendations are appreciated. Thanks in advance!

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Street vendors typically are cooking right in front of you using a gas hotplate or grill. So long as meats are cooked to appropriate serving temperatures it should be fine.


But the city is dotted with small family run cafes where the locals will grab a quick bite. Might not sound exotic, but fried chicken is often the featured item. But a more traditional meal, bandeja paisa, will be on offer at many restaurants serving comida tipica (typical food). Soups such as ajiaco, or sancocho are quite common as well. All are very popular Colombian dishes, though those specific items originated elsewhere in Colombia.


For cuisine truly local to the coast, unlike much of the country, Cartagena turns to the sea. Varieties of ceviche, pargo frito (fried snapper), or other seafoods are often served with arroz de coco (coconut rice). Caution... Colombians like their fried fish VERY fried, and generally not breaded. Chase your meal with a local beer. Aguilla is probably the best known.


Regardless of your entree, many dishes will be served with arepas (close to a flatbread), and/or patacones (mashed and fried plantains).

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