An Ecuadorian saying goes like this: Eat breakfast like a King, eat lunch like a Queen and eat dinner like a peasant. And so it goes…

My typical breakfast, which my family serves me in my home: Scrambled Egg frittata with onions, peppers, tomatoes and maybe even ham, yogurt, two different kinds of cut-up fruit (apples, bananas, oranges, mandarins, or whatever else she grabs from the large bowl of fruit on the counter. Finally, two different kinds of fresh juice.

Recipe? Squeeze juice into the blender. Add water. Consume in large quantities.  I’m getting very spoiled by the fruit!

Here are some of my favorites to drink as juice!  (Our school set up a tasting bar so that we could learn the names of the fruit… and you can too!)


A typical “Lunch of the Day” in a restaurant includes a first course of potato or noodle soup made from the stock and bones of some kind of meat. Then, a second “plato” of meat, potatoes, rice and if you’re really lucky, a little bit of vegetables and of course, juice. Cost?  $2.00

A typical dinner, which my family serves me in my house: a “plato” of meat, potatoes, rice, some vegetables and juice.

Basically… starch, meat, fruit, and fruit juice every day.  But it’s all so good!

The most unusual dish I’ve had so far is Yaualocro.  My family translated this black pile of sand on my plate to be blood.  I was shown how to add it to my soup and I ate it.  I found out later it was the chopped up intestines of a sheep.  It was pretty good.

The most amazing dish I’ve had so far: Crab with shrimp and fish fried rice, and fried bananas. Another crab was served in a soup of green bananas.  Delicious!

I’m learning to drink beer, especially when it is served as a Michelada with the seeds and pulp of a maracuya, and salt is added to the rim.

The most unusual eating tradition I’ve seen so far:  When someone has a birthday, they are presented with a cake and a “Feliz Cumpleanos” song. After they blow out the candles, then their face is either smashed into the cake or part of the cake is grabbed and smeared into their face.  I’ve witnessed two birthdays so far, and two food fights. My family gets a little crazy!

Weekends are for relaxing, and when I’m not spending time with my family, I’ve found a walking trail, I’ve borrowed a bicycle to explore, and I finally found the open air market in town.  Here are some pictures of that adventure!

This stall had it all… dog food, rabbit food, corn, eggs and brooms to clean your kitchen!
Eggs are sold by the dozen in a rack.  All grains and beans are bulk in large plastic bags.
The head and hoofs of sheep.  It makes a brilliant soup, so I’m told!
This is a pig head and ribs from a cow.  The butcher is portioning a cow in the background.
These dripping sheets of skin are the stomach lining of a cow. 
These farmers were shelling and selling their fava beans.
I recognize so many plants!  Ecuador is a country at the Equator, and one would think that the plants are tropical.  But since the city of Quito is at 9,000 feet, it’s like I’m living at a northern latitude on the earth…. just like Oregon!  As I drop in elevation toward the coast, the plants will be much more tropical.
A juice bar in the middle of the market.  He is pouring my tamarinda juice.
These are guabas.  They are a large variety.  I’ve seen smaller ones hanging from a tree.  I had to buy one to take it home to find out what to do with it.
When you open it up, it has fuzzy seeds inside.  It’s this fuzziness or pulp that you can eat. 

Next week, our class is heading to the coast to spend a week learning about that region and shadowing a Peace Corps volunteer in their school.  I’m very excited about seeing a different part of the country!  I’m sure I’ll have more food pictures then!