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What did Anthony Bourdain eat during his visits to Latin America?

The chef, writer and presenter of CNN, Anthony Bourdain, died at age 61

What did Anthony Bourdain eat during his visits to Latin America?

Anthony Bourdain, chef and food promoter through television and his books, was found dead at 61 in a hotel in France. CNN reported that the chef committed suicide during a work trip where he was preparing a new episode of the series Parts unknown. His friend Eric Ripert was the one who found Bourdain's body in the hotel room.

In Latin America, Bourdain will be remembered for the tribute he made to Latin Americans in his books, extolling their work and their position in the United States and the world. Having positioned the region in this way, it will be Bourdain's legacy in Latin America.

His career was a great source for exploring the human condition and helped his audience think differently about food. The French chef participated in numerous campaigns to improve working conditions for people working in restaurants.

During his trips to Latin America, Bourdain visited Colombia earlier this year. In Antioquia, he ate sancocho from the communes. In Medellín, the chef delighted himself with the famous Calentao Paisa in a market place, being amazed by the Colombian flavor. In Cartagena, he ate lobster and visited the famous Bazurto market, where he tasted the arepa e`huevo and the turtle egg soup.

"Colombia is unique in South America, has many advantages that other countries do not have," said the author of the book Confessions of a Chef (Kitchen Confidential), in teleconference with journalists from different media, among these El Tiempo.

In an interview for CNN, this chef tells that Colombia has been one of the places that has surprised him the most. Bourdain said that "Colombia is always surprising. Medellin used to be the worst place on Earth, it used to be the murder capital of the world. If you watch the movies and the news, Colombia seems a bad place. But in fact, my team and I have never felt so welcome elsewhere. It was amazing how a place can improve when they are ready to do it and how many wonderful things we do not know about the country. It's really a special place. "

El Salvador captivated Bourdain for the famous pupusas. The pupusas are a thin dough made from washed raw corn that is filled with cheese, beans, pork rinds, fish, among many options. These are found in different places in Latin America, they are a traditional dish in Guatemala and Nicaragua but, apparently, for this chef those from El Salvador are the best. According to the website El Ciudadano, Anthony Bourdain declared that this dish is the best in Latin America.

Chile was one of the most beautiful places where Bourdain was, said the chef for Culto magazine. In the southern country, he tested sea paella, legs, wine, and other delicacies. In this country he was in Valparaíso, Puerto Montt and Santiago.

In Ecuador, Bourdain visited La Floresta, an emblematic neighborhood of Quito, known in the 1930s as the "little London". Inside there is a significant number of heritage houses over 80 years old that were built in neoclassical style, something that caught Bourdain's attention.

There, the chef was in the street food cart market specializing in indigenous foods, which were very pleasing to this icon of gastronomy. Additionally, he ate pieces of smoked pork with corn, beans, roasted banana and the famous Guaditas (cow's stomach).

In Peru, the chef had the opportunity to know the preparation of the flag dish of this country, the ceviche. In one of the episodes of "Parts Unknown", Bourdain commented that "this wonderful dish only needs fresh fish, a bit of citrus and eat it." "The abundant fresh fish, grilled chicken, hot peppers and packages of cocoa from Peru are so tasty that it would be cruel not to share them," the chef added.

As for Paraguay, the program broadcast on October 12, 2014, showed Bourdain crossing the river, eating goldfish and surubí and tasting a well-known national beer.

"Although Anthony Bourdain is a famous chef and professional globetrotter, he had never visited Paraguay before, and the trip had great personal significance, since his great great-great-great-grandfather died in Paraguay. The search for information about his life in Paraguay led us to delve IGNORE INTO the fascinating history of this country, and in the process, meet many interesting experts" CNN affirmed.

In Mexico, he visited Tepito, a neighborhood in the north of the historic center, where he took a classic michelada before touring the piracy sales area and doing other activities in the city's best-known neighborhood.

Bourdain also visited one of the most sophisticated and famous restaurants of the CDMX, "Máximo Bistrot," in the Roma neighborhood. After this visit, he had the opportunity to accompany chef Eduardo García to the Central de Abastos to buy the fresh ingredients to cook in his restaurant.

The chef and media personality tried out at the place called La Güera (which has been open for 65 years), a traditional crumb soup, a broth made with beef bones and pork tripe with garlic, onion, bread, tortillas and epazote. He also visited an altar to Santa Muerte, a reflection and emblem of the Tepiteña culture.

In one of his visits to Argentina , Bourdain began his tour in Buenos Aires accompanied by the music of the rock group Los Pericos. There he tasted the typical empanadas from Buenos Aires, the picadas and the pizza with fainá, a dish based on chickpea flour.

In Bariloche, El Colfon and El Calafante, he ate the famous roasts and stews made with lamb and pork meat. The final touch was his visit to the Perito Moreno glacier, where he tried the whiskey on the rocks, made with ice extracted from the glacier, which is considered a delight for tourists.

His romance for the Latino was evident, he liked the Spanish language struggling to understand and speak it. Proof of this are these sections of his famous book Kitchen Confidential:

  • "The Ecuadorian, Mexican, Dominican and Salvadoran chefs, with whom I have worked over the years, make most of the white boys trained in the CIA (Culinary Institute of America) look like clumsy and tearful young men"
  • "They send me a Mexican dishwasher at any time. I can teach him to cook. I can teach him to have style "
  • "The backbone of the industry is the cheap labor of Mexicans, Dominicans, Salvadorans and Ecuadorians"

Latin American Post | Amaranta Torres
Translated from "¿Qué comió Anthony Bourdain en sus visitas por Latinoamérica?"