If you have never experienced authentic Guatemalan specialties, today is the day to make your way to Tenth and Virginia Avenue in OKC, to a tiny storefront that began years ago in the Plaza District. Tienda Guatemala offers both daily menu items made from scratch in small batches and beautifully crafted bread and sweets in the “Minimarket Guatemala” side of the business.
For the uninitiated, you always start with an order of pupusas. Made of masa and stuffed with various ingredients before being griddled, these are some of the best this writer has ever tasted. They are served with curtido, a fresh and crunchy slaw made from cabbage, onions, carrots, oregano and vinegar or lime juice.
While the menu is limited and some items rotate regularly, there are no wrong decisions. You can order traditionally prepared chicken, either guisado (a rich stew) or rostizado (roasted). Various caldos (soups), tamales and chiles rellenos are also available. Pacaya, the flowers of date palms native to the country, make a delicious vegetarian option.
For a refreshing beverage to pair with your meal, try one of their typical aguas frescas. Fresh fruit or flowers (lemon, hibiscus or tamarind) are blended with water and sugar to make these “fresh waters.” They also offer a variety of fresh, natural juices in blends like green juice, energy, anti-flu, vitamins and more.
Tienda Guatemala is open from 7 a.m. until 10 p.m. seven days a week, and everything on their regular menu is under $12. For specials, follow them on Facebook.