There are probably as many pupusa vendors in El Salvador as there are Starbucks cafes in a similar area in the US. That is to say there are pupusa vendors at almost every street corner. And I’m glad of that. They are (the pupusas, not the vendors) the perfect street snack. A thick tortilla typically filled with beans and cheese and served with tangy curtido, a pickled cabbage side and a spicy sauce, the pupusa is not that easy to make. At least not on your first try. Or even your second. Perhaps you’ve mastered tortillas. But try getting that filling in there and then pressing down again to flatten the ball of filled dough. Chances are the filling will ooze out or your pupusa will come apart.
So, I’ll admit, I haven’t mastered the art of pupusa making yet. But I’m working on it. In the meantime, I was very happy to hear of a Salvadorean bakery in West Seattle. And one fine day when we were out running a million errands, I convinced my husband to make a slight 10 mile detour into West Seattle before heading back home.
The Salvadorean bakery has a huge selection of baked goods but also a full menu and pupusas and tamales too.
We had ‘tamal con pollo’ there and brought pupusas home. The tamales were very tasty and I remembered just in time to take a picture before wolfing it down. We got two kinds of pupusas, one with beans and cheese, and the other with ayuto (squash) and cheese. My favorite was the one with beans. The curtido was not as tangy as I would have liked but still tasted good. The bakery pictures were taken with my cellphone, so my apologies for the bad quality.
So the ‘quest’ was successful and really not that hard after all! If you’re ever in West Seattle or can get there easily, give the Salvadorean bakery a try.
Other options for pupusas in Seattle include the Guanaco’s in Capitol Hill and University District. You can even request your choice of fillings!