A few days ago, I wrote about the Baleadas from Honduras and how they are the most popular and “democratic” food in Honduras. I say democratic because everyone can afford one! There is no doubt that they are the most popular, but the famous pastelitos from La Ceiba are close behind! You will ask, what are these famous pastelitos all about? Well, for one if you use the dictionary to translate pastelitos to English you find that they are small cakes! Nothing farther from reality! You see pastelitos are closely related to the South American empanadas that are popular in Uruguay and Argentina! They really have nothing to do with cakes, they are not sweet.
La Ceiba´s famous Pastelitos are stuffed empanadas. They are stuffed with ground beef or shredded chicken. They are also available in Tela, the Bay Islands and all of Honduras, for that matter. Pastelitos are popular because they are delicious, and most importantly, affordable!
These famous pastelitos from La Ceiba can be made with wheat flour or corn flower. They can be stuffed with beef, chicken, or really, with just about anything! As you can see, it is a very flexible commodity that is popular with the working class. Above all, they are delicious! Personally, I prefer the ones with a corn flower, but those with wheat flower are more popular with the locals. Corn tortillas are just not a regular staple on the Caribbean Coast of Honduras. Perhaps this is why the Baleadas are made with wheat and not corn tortillas. But they are a very popular food in Atlantida, and all of Honduras for that matter!
La Ceiba´s famous pastelitos are one of the most affordable street foods you can find. The best are to be found on the corner of 7th street and Avenida San Isidro. This is just across Casa Panayoti in La Ceiba. The operation is simple: you show up, you order them, if they are ready, they are served, if not you wait a few minutes and bingo! You eat them standing up on the street or you take them home or to your office and enjoy them there. Better take a few extras for the folks back home or in the office! This joint is open for breakfast till noon only. After that they best spot is at the Baleada joint in Central Park.
Another, a bit more formal place to enjoy some of these great famous pastelitos from La Ceiba is at Golosinas Karol. They are just across the street from Chicharronera Kike. This is on 19th Street, in Barrio Alvarado. As a tip, this is the street that is where the Suyapita Catholic Church is at. If you are on Avenida 14 de Julio, turn east on 19th street and after a few blocks you will be at Golosinas Karol. Here they offer a great tomato sauce, that when combined with the local habanero sauce will take you out of this world!
Finally, if you want a more traditional restaurant to try the La Ceiba´s famous pastelitos, try Cafeteria Cobel. This is one of the oldest traditional restaurants in La Ceiba. They are on 7th Street, almost across the street from the street joint that I mentioned above. They are open Monday through Saturday from 7:00 am and serve great pastelitos. You can buy them to go, and bring them home, to the office or the hotel, or enjoy them right there.
So now you know all about the famous pastelitos from La Ceiba. I suggest that you go out and taste them! Let us know if you prefer the beef or the chicken pastelitos! Bon apetit! See you there?