Arepas With Pork Belly and Cassava
- 1 14-oz bag yellow hominy corn (you can also use golden hominy corn)
- water (to rinse, soak and cook the hominy)
- butter or oil (to grill the arepas)
- salt to taste
Years ago, while I was going through my Colombian cookbooks, I found a recipe to make arepas santandereanas, which are arepas that come from Colombia's Santander region. It really caught my attention because they are different from the arepas I grew up eating; these ones are made with cassava and fried pork belly. I couldn't make them for the longest time because I never had all the ingredients I needed. If I had hominy, I didn't have cassava. If I had fried pork belly, I didn't have hominy. And if I had cassava, I didn't have hominy or fried pork belly. Having all of those ingredients on hand when you live in a country that is so far away from Colombia can be complicated at times.
When I was finally able to make them, I completely fell in love with them. The primary flavor that the arepas have comes from the yellow hominy, but the flavor changes a bit with the cassava, and especially with the fried pork belly; it's incredible! I'm not going to lie, but these arepas take a very long time to make. Well, not the arepas themselves, but cooking the hominy and the pork belly can take at least a couple of hours.
But if you do decide to make them at home, you will see that they are totally worth it.