Foodie Blogroll

Friday, March 18, 2011

Arepa Reina Pepiada ~ Arepa Sandwich with Chicken and Avocado

When we were on spring break I had time to play around with making arepa for breakfast. I have both kinds of masarepa flour, and like them both. I made some with both white and yellow, with and without oil or butter, stove top and baked or both. I will show you one version today, and I'll later post some of the other's. I also got my waffle iron out for the first time (not to make arepas though).

Arepas are a simple bread made from precooked corn flour, and is popular in Columbia, Venezuela, and the rest of Latin America. These corn cakes can be thick, thin, stuffed, topped or made into a sandwich. You can find them on the breakfast table in many Colombian homes. I won't go into the differences of the Colombian and Venezuelan arepas and who was the first to come up with them. I'll just show you one way to make them.

I have both the white and yellow corn masarepa, supposedly you have to have this flour to make an arepa. I found it in our local grocery store in the Latin foods section. If you can't find it in your store I'm sure a Latin market will carry it.
Simply mix 2 cups masarepa flour, 3 cups warm water, and a 2/4 tsp of salt. Mix until well absorbed and the dough is not sticky (I used my hands to mix and you can get a better feel of the dough. Let set for 5 - 10 minutes. Wet your hands before you start and form into a ball, then flatten into a patty, about 3" across and 3/4" thick, if it cracks add some water to smooth it out. Some recipes call for oil or butter, but I found you really don't need this.

Place the arepas on a griddle or skillet heated to medium - high heat. Cook on each side 5 -6 minutes until golden crust forms. Take them from pan and place in a 375 degree oven right on the rack, and bake 15-20 minutes, they will sound hollow when tapped.

(I made some small one for my bento box lunches)
The arepas Reina Pepiada: The Curvy Queen of Arepas was said to be named after a Venezuelan Beauty queen Susana Dujim - she was 1955 Miss World. For fun you might want to read more about this at Venezuelan food and drinks. This is my version of Arepa Reina Pepiada:

4 arepas
3/4 cup shredded cooked chicken
1 ripe avocado
1 shallot chopped
1 clove garlic (roasted and chopped)
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
1-2 tomatillos (roasted and diced - optional of course)
3-4 tablespoons mayonnaise
Salt and pepper to taste

I had some tomatillos so I thought I would use them, of course you can omit this. I roasted them and the garlic while the arepas were cooking/baking.

I put some lemon juice on the avocado slices just so they wouldn't turn brown. Shred or chop the chicken and cut everything in uniform size pieces, and mix together.

Slice the arepas in half or cut them almost all the way through so you can stuff them.

Fill them as full as you like...

Ahhh...the simple pleasure...enjoy them for breakfast or like we did with these for lunch

It is the 3rd Saturday time for Cultural Connections over at Our Krazy Kitchen, where I posted this recipe.


  1. Sounds like fun making these...looks delicious stuffed to the brim like you did!

  2. That's a hearty, healthy and tasty weekend lunch! Love avocado aside too.
    Have a wonderful weekend!

  3. Great how-to post on arepas, Lyndsey. I've never made them, but sure love to eat them! Nice chicken salad stuffing, too.
    (Love that you make yourself bento box lunches!)

  4. Oh, these looks very good and not too difficult to make (and we all know you are easy in the kitchen, so why am I surprised). :)

    they almost look like an english muffin minus the nooks. I'll have to see if I can find this flour in my Shop Rite today. I'd like to try these. thanks for sharing!

  5. I love arepas and frankly had no idea they were that easy to make! Love that salad, adore avocados and tomatillos, great lunch!

  6. Jeannie - Hehe! yes, stuffed to the brim! If you don slice all the way through in seems to hold the filling in better.

    Angie - I have been using avocado in sandwiches lately, trying to keep them on the sandwich is a challenge.

    Barbara - thanks, I'm glad it's easy to understand sometimes it makes sense to you and you just hope others will see that. I have fallen so behind on posting my bentos.

    Betty Ray - Lol! That's right! Hope you can find the masarepa. I found the P.A.N. brand on the bottom shelf. I want to make english muffins next.

    Joumana - I think the tomatillos worked nice with the salad, but they get a little soft when you roast them, maybe fresh with lemon next time.

  7. I love to learn about new ways to prepare food and you just introduced me to something new. I have English muffins in the freezer that might do the trick; thank you.

  8. I have bookmarked this to try out soon, hopefully! Cause I don't have enough maize flour left. Do you think maize flour will work on this recipe? It texture looks very tender & moist. Not wet, right? Looks very much like muffins? hehe...
    Have a fabulous weekend, Lyndz.

  9. Yummy. Great flavors all of which I'd gladly devour. So similar to gorditas, with the exception of the specific flour and lack of frying, I suppose. Although some people don't fry their gorditas, either {gasp}. Anyway...YUM!

  10. Rita - thanks, I like to do the same thing. That is what is so fun about blogging with everyone from all over the world...learning new ways to have fun with great food!

    Kristy - Some purists would probably say it wouldn't work, but I have heard of others who have used it and it turned out fine. You might want to play with it and add a little butter, or pan fry in oil. The texture is a little crisp on the outside and tender and moist inside, not wet. I make sure it cooked enough so it's not wet. Next week I will post some arepas with eggs that I made using the yellow masarepa flour. They were a little thinner.
    You have a fabulous weekend too Kristy!

    girlicheg - They do remind you of gorditas. Hey if it makes you feel better you can fry these!! :D I will have to try making gorditas next.

  11. I've just discovered this blog and have to catch up. I thought you just weren't posting and didn't realize you had an additional blog. This recipe sounds delicious for any meal.


  12. oh my! this looks so good! very impressive!

  13. This looks amazing! Making it in a great big cast-iron skillet would probably give it more character and definitely double the healthy iron content of the dish when finished...

  14. Bonnie - I am happy that you made your way here. You must of been stuck on my Tiny Bento blog. :D I really have to get back to posting in that blog. I hope you find something you like here!

    Simply Life - thank you so much!

    Ken D Berry MD - yes a cast iron skillet or griddle is often used when making these, and you can pop the whole thing in the oven if that's they way you want to make them.

  15. Wow, you made the bread yourself! I love the creamy filling, chicken and avocado just sound heavenly...! Have a nice weekend :)!

  16. Oh YUMM! Lyndsey, I've never heard of arepas - this is why I love food blogging. I will definitely try this entire recipe. It really appeals to me.

    We get two weeks of spring break this year.


  17. Oh that looks simply delicious and refreshing.

  18. Cooking Gallery - You know it has to be easy to make if I can make this bread. :D

    Lyndsay - You are so right, that's why I like food blogging too. Glad you like it. You are so lucky to get 2 weeks for SB. We never had it so early, but then we get a "mini" break for Good Friday.

    Kristen - it was nice and refreshing, I always use the light mayo.

  19. Breakfast, lunch or even dinner may work for me!

  20. Yum! They're new to me, haven't heard of them around here. They sound and look delicious. I love flat breads and will have to try this. The filling sounds good too. Hope you had a great spring break. It's not until the first week of April here.

  21. Wow, this looks fantastic!! I'd love to try this :-)

  22. Arepas are basically one of my most favorite foods EVER. I really need to try to make them at know...fuel the addiction. Thanks for posting this great recipe!

  23. These look delicious! I've been curious about arepas but was intimidated to try them. you make it sound so easy! No idea if I'll find masarepa flour here but I'll look.

    thanks for sharing this! :)

  24. wow what an amazing breakfast i adore your adventurous cooking spirit

  25. Beautiful! I was just wondering what type of masa was used for arepas, I knew it was not the tradtional kind. I hope that I can find it locally, you've inspired me!

  26. I've wanted to make these since I saw them on Bobby Flay's Showdown! They look delicious - especially with the chicken salad!

  27. I love arepas! We can get really good ones at our Farmer's Market in the spring/summer. My mouth is watering, just thinking of it!

  28. To the best of my knowledge, this bread does not exist in Mexico, but I wish it did. The sandwich looks delicious.


  29. Thanks everyone. I sure hope you can find the masarepa flour for those of you who want to make your own, otherwise you can get it online. Would love to see what you come up with.

  30. I must look for that type of flour. I am so tempted.

  31. I don't think I've tried arepas. They look good and your sandwich makes a lovely lunch.

  32. How brilliant to make them into sandwiches! I usually just slather butter...or dulce de leche. =)

  33. Wow! Those look terrific! I've never heard of them, but have to try them now. Thanks so much for sharing.

  34. I love arepas.....My favorite food! That looks delicious.In Colombia we make thin arepas and top them with all the ingredients.

  35. I love quick buns....and this looks great.

  36. tigerfish, yes, me too!

    Pam, We had a great spring break. We never have spring break this early, I think they changed it for the FCAT testing.

    Maria, I wish you could try them.

    Joanne, I would love to see what you come up with! You gotta make them at home.

    Susan B, They are easier that I thought. I don't know about the flour, maybe online.

    mr. pineapple man - hope you get a chance to.

    Rebecca, thanks, I do have fun exploring.

    Savory Tv - I hope you can find it, they are so many things you can fill them with.

    Reeni - I missed that throwdown, I'll have to look for it. I have enjoyed each kind that I made.

    TKW, that would be great to get them at the farmers market. We can get empanadas at ours.

    Sarah - Thanks they are yummy!

    Elra - Yes I hope you can find it.

    Biren - Thank you, it was so fresh and tasty

    Belinda - Mmmmm slathered in butter...or dulce de leche. :)

    Sonia, yes, but you can make them with more fat and oil! ;D

    laxsupermom, come on over, I'll whip up a batch.

    Erica, I think I first tried making them because of you! Thanks!

    Kitchen Butterfly, quick and easy, and so good! Thanks!

  37. Hi Lyndsey! I had gotten a Gluten Free cookbook for Christmas that had an arepa recipe in it. I searched all the local health food stores and couldn't find any masarepa so I went on line. had it but shipping was so high! More searching and I found it at a Target grocery just in the next town! I got a 4.4 lb bag and have made breakfast arepas twice now so I will need to try your sandwiches! Thanks so much!


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