I’m definitely one of those people who get obsessive over foods. I’ll try anything once, and I’ll come back for seconds, thirds and twentieths if I like it enough! A few years ago, my boyfriend and I tried arepas at a little Venezuelan restaurant in the city. An arepa is a small round corn cake that is grilled, sliced in half and filled with all kinds of delicious things! The corn cake is slightly crunchy on the outside, but soft on the inside. I love them stuffed with shredded beef and cheese, or with chicken salad and avocado. You just pick them up and eat them with your hands — simple and delicious!
My first attempt at making arepas was, in short, a disaster. I used the wrong kind of cornmeal, which ruined the entire recipe and resulted in a call for takeout that evening. It’s important that you use a precooked corn meal, usually called masarepa (I use the Goya brand). It’s more of a corn flour than a meal — it’s very fine unlike the grainy kind you use to make corn muffins.
I use this recipe for my arepas, although you can usually find a recipe on the back of the masarepa bag as well. Then just fill as you please! In the above example, I used shredded chicken mixed with a tiny bit of mayo, slices of fresh avocado and roasted red pepper. Yum!