Our friends Leigh and Rick took me into Manta with them yesterday. We told stories, laughed having a great time. We had breakfast at a local restaurant with Angie and Raphael, the restaurant served Llapingachos – but not with potato – with yuca, they have a different name which I failed to catch. They also serve the traditional Ecuadorian breakfast meals from Chicken and Rice to Encebollado which is a soup of Albacore Tuna with onions as well as over-easy eggs. My kind of place. I love encebollado but had to have the over-easy eggs with the llapingachos and a café con leche.
Of course we had to take a few of the llapingachos to go. They are now in the freezer waiting for the perfect day to bring them out for another feast.
We then went to the mall and SuperMaxi for some shopping while Rick took his truck in to get detailed -you cannot call it washed as it looked like a new truck when he came to pick us up.
We then went out to lunch, fish ceviche, excellent.
It was a laughter filled busy day, thanks Leigh and Rick for such a fun day.
Once a week this man comes by selling brooms (escoba) along with plastic laundry baskets and other assorted plastics.
He just giggled like a little kid when I asked him if I could take his picture. But he said yes and stood smiling while directing you to his wares. I bought two brooms one a push broom for the leaves on the patio and one regular broom for the inside of the house. Total $9.50 and I did not have to go to Bahia or Portoviejo to purchase them. That is a big deal for us.
It was a perfect morning to take a walk into town. The tide was not too high and we were able to walk the beach the entire way. We had high hopes to find the pharmacy open, not at 10:00am, 10:30am or even at 11:00am. Next stop was to see if Pinoche had any shrimp, not this morning. And then to see if the encebollado was available on Saturday mornings in town.
As you can see from the picture above we were successful in finding a restaurant open and one that serves that special breakfast soup encebollado. This soup is a fish broth, packed with onions and potatoes (I have been sent a comment from Andy saying that encebollado is made with yuca, I stand corrected, thanks Andy you need to keep me honest here okay) served with fresh cooked albacora or similar fish. I never though in my wildest dreams that I would be eating fish soup for breakfast but you really need to try it. Excellent hardy flavor, delicious flaked albacora, thin sliced onions in a fish broth…excellent.
This restaurant is located one block past the San Clemente mercado going towards San Alejo. You know how they call a place a hole in the wall, well this is exactly that, two tables with six stools, a small closet type kitchen, one woman cooking and a young man taking orders and serving. Now hold onto your hats, this cost $1 a serving and it came with a bag of fresh plantain chips. Both Joe and I loved it and will be going back our next morning trip into town. By the way, the bowl was already half eaten when I remembered to take a photo!
This morning I went to the mercado for albacora for our dinner tonight. I am getting a bit tired of serving it blackened so I decided to visit the Herbman and see what wonderful concoction he has for albacora. He has a very small kiosk area filled with dried whole and ground herbs, seeds and spices. Small plastic bags containing ingredients for your seco de chivo or seco de pollo or whatever you are feeding your family today. As well as flour, bread crumbs and even peanut butter.
This man is so proud of what he does and the entire area where his stand is located went crazy when I asked to take his picture, hooting and whistling like a bunch of teenagers. It was so funny to see his neighbors supporting him in such a wonderful fashion.
I asked him what he would suggest to make my albacora, first he opened my bag to be sure it was albacora and then he proceeded to tell me to make ceviche with it. If I want ceviche I will go out to eat it, I would prefer to have someone else do all the work, ha ha and I told him that. He then suggested this bottle of garlic and onion sauce he told me it was all natural and that I should put it on the fish after I had coated the fish with a little flour.
This was packages in a used juice container. We have never had any problems with buying in a recycled container as these folks know that it is their livelihood if someone gets sick they would be out of business. I used it this evening and WOW it was so flavorful, a bit salty for me as we do not use a great deal of sal, but exceptional. I will use it again but probably only a small amount unless I can get my friend the Herbman to make it with less salt. Tomorrow I will see what magic he has for shrimp!!!!!