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Ham & Cheese Arepas

by Laura Ali

Arepas have been around for hundreds of years. These delicious sandwiches originated from the indigenous tribes living in what is now Columbia and Venezuela. They were popular across all social and economic levels and represented their daily masa bread. You can now find arepas in Peru because of the recent influx of Venezuelans due to violence and their collapsing economy.

2 mugs PAN white cornmeal




ham, cheese or other fillings

Put 2 mugs full of PAN into a large bowl. Add 1 mug of very hot water, then 1 mug of lukewarm water. Stir until it forms a dough, then knead with your hands until it's smooth and free of clumps. Roll into 8 balls, approximately the size of a tennis ball. Take 1 dough ball and rub a small amount of butter all over it. Break the ball into 2 pieces and flatten both sides out. Put 1/2 slice of cheese and a piece of ham or other meat in the middle. Close the edges by pinching with your fingers. Melt a pat of butter in a frying pan or on a griddle and cook until golden brown on each side. It is important to eat these when they are still warm and the cheese is melted. Enjoy!



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