Thursday, April 16, 2009

Hot Dogs and Egg Rolls: Santiago on the Run

Santiago is a place of beauty and clarity. The Sun, during our stay, constantly shone down upon this very modern city; upon the its people walking quickly between barrios, the metro stops dotting the streets and the brilliant beautification.

Also, among the things getting lit up and warmed by the sun´s rays, was the city´s brilliant street food. I could go on about the lovely parks along the river that runs down the center, or Barrio Bellavista´s very lively nightlife, but these are things that seem to over shadowed by the hot dogs and egg rolls.

Starting with our first encounter with Santiago street food is a variation of the egg roll, or more of a cross between an egg roll and taquito. This deep fried, veggitarian treat, is available at prices at about twenty US cents and are found around nearly every metro stop. I am not sure of the words being belted by the vendors selling these trinkets of culinary delight, but they are identifiable as crispy tortilla wraps crammed together in some plastic box near the steps of subway stations.

Moving on to our favorite, and most important, food of Santiago, is the hot dog. Along most streets, and in nearly every restaurant, are served Completo´s or Italiano´s. At their core, these tasty roadside delicacies are nothing more than glorified hot dogs. However, the glorification process is what makes it so noteworthy. As el sol beemed down and bounced of the polished metal exterior of the carts on the street, advacado and onion and mayo and ketchup and sourcrout and hot peppers and mustard were added to the top of these pork cylinders- the codiments out weighing the hot dog by two or three to one. And here lies the beauty: it is a sandwich of rudimentary, and sometimes offensive, secondary tastes. The condiments seem to combine in away previously thought impossibly. This all done in under 2 USD.

So, the true sites are not sites at all, but rather tastes. And since they did not last long in our hands (although their memories will live on in our hearts, minds, and pallets) there were few pictures taken, but the ones we do have we will be sure to share, but until then, salivate over those thoughts for awhile.

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