Arepas, thick corn tortillas which are split and stuffed with myriad fillings, are the quintessential Venezuelan dish. The most famous variations are the "reina pepiada" shredded chicken salad with avocado and âdominoâ stuffed with black beans and shredded white cheese. Hallacas Venezuela's homegrown version of the tamale, with meat, olives, raisins covered in cornmeal and wrapped in plantain leaves to be steamed are a popular Christmas dish. Cachapas corn pancakes often topped with a salty cheese called "telita" or "queso de mano", empanadas savory pastries and the ubiquitous "perros calientes" hot dogs are popular street food. For slow food, try delicious fish meals, or a shrimp soup known as âcazuela de mariscosâ.
The traditional Venezuelan lunch is pabellÃ³n, and consists of rice, black beans, and meat, with a side of fried plantain slices. The above dishes are known as "comida criolla", or Creole food.
Venezuela is a leading producer of fine cacao beans and Venezuelan chocolate can be excellent. The El Rey brand has consistent quality.