If you have not yet discovered arepas, they are truly a wonderful freedom food for the gluten intolerant that is gluten free. The arepa is a flat, unleavened patty made of corn flour that originated in the South Americas.
Arepas are wonderful because you stuff them like a pita of sorts. They are crispy on the outside and warm and soft on the inside. And they are quick enough to make these up on a weeknight dinner. At our home they are used for this recipe (stuffed with shrimp and other good things), or as hamburger buns, (it is the most like a real hamburger expereince you will get without the bun!) or for pulled pork BBQ.
The next day, when split and put into a toaster, then slathered with a bit of fig jam, well…you might just think you were eating an English muffin.
You need one special ingredient, but it is easy to find at Mexican grocers, ethic food markets, and well stocked grocers.
Makes about 4 bun-sized arepas (about 4-inches)
- 2 cups P.A.N. pre-cooked corn meal (also known as corn flour). NOTE: polenta, grits, regular corn meal, or masa harina will not work for this recipe
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 to 3 cups warm water
- 3 tbs oil
On a dry griddle or skillet set to medium, cook on griddle about 10 minutes per side. They should be browned, and sound hollow when tapped when they are done.
Split with a knife and stuff with whatever you like. In this picture we stuffed it with shrimp sautéed with lime juice, a cucumber-radish slaw, and a chipotle sauce.