Since I love tablescapes and food, it’s not possible to leave Cuba behind without sharing some of both.
Black beans and rice are staples in the diet and goodness knows I had plenty of those, together with some variation of pork, beef and chicken.
Most lunches were at government owned restaurants with simple foods served family or buffet style.
The tables were equally as simple with paper napkins and plastic tablecloths.
Soup always preceded the main course, and this one had a secret ingredient which only I got. The texture was unappealingly soft, almost mushy, and there was an underlying sweet taste. Asked what it was, the waiter explained that one plantain was used to flavor the soup and that was it!
Evening meals were generally in lovely privately owned paladars and were a bit more gourmet with special attention given to presentation.
Don’t you love the look of this salad? I’m thinking I’ll give it a try at some future dinner gathering.
The table settings were as attractive as the food presentation.
Some were an eclectic mix of dishes, stemware and silverware on crocheted or lace trimmed cloths. I couldn’t help but wonder if some of these items had been left behind when people fled Cuba as it had the look of having been around for awhile.
Other tables featured wonderful locally made dishes that added a touch of whimsy. If only I could have figured out how to get some home…….
No matter where we ate there was always a welcome drink, typically a mojito and every one of them tasted different. I’m not sure I want another for a while.
With every meal, I couldn’t help but think about how difficult it is for Cubans to get food which made me feel a little guilty for enjoying such variety and abundance. As mentioned in the first post of this series, most of the food is imported and available on a limited basis. If I left Cuba hoping for one thing, it was that government owned property would become more available for farming and that people would become interested in growing their own food. That, to me, would go a long way toward improving the quality of life on this lovely island.
I so appreciate your visit and the comments you leave behind
Oh the Places I’ve Been