Several local restaurants and the City’s Chelsea Prospers program is stepping up to celebrate all things about the pupusa this Sunday, April 7, at Emiliana Fiesta as part of the first annual Pupusa Fiesta.
As a precursor to the coming Night Market events, and a nod to the City’s Latino and Central American heritage, the City and local business owners have combined efforts to put on a free festival to highlight the stuffed corn tortilla delicacy – as well as all the trimmings that go with it.
Downtown Coordinator Mimi Graney said that five businesses have signed up to participate in the free event, where they will have pupusa samples, forchata drinks, pupusa-making demos, curtido and mariachi music.
“It’s kind of flexing our muscles to see how well we get people together and I also wanted to have a celebration of a particular food that we have in Chelsea,” said Graney.
Julio Flores of El Santaneco Restaurant said they are very excited to participate and feel it is very important that a dish like the pupusa is being highlighted.
“We’re very excited because we opened the restaurant in 2000, and since then we’ve participated in different events like Taste of Chelsea and others,” he said. “However, this is the first time it’s going to be just about the Latino cuisine – particularly the pupusa. That’s a very huge thing.”
A pupusa is a thick corn tortilla stuffed with cheese and beans – sometimes meats as well. Curtido is a common side dish with the pupusa and it is a vinegar-based slaw made of cabbage and carrots – and a touch of spiciness.
“I think the city manager and Mimi and Chelsea Prospers are doing a great job because I’m not 100 percent sure, but I think it’s the first time there is an event just about Latino food. It also opens up the opportunity for this to happen again. I would love to see this as an opportunity to start a tradition and that it won’t be a one-time event.”
He also said it gives homage to the culture in Chelsea, but a culture that is changing.
“The City is changing,” he said. “The Latino community has been in Chelsea many years.”
The Pupusa Fiesta will take place on Sunday, April 7, from 2-5 p.m. at Emiliana Fiesta, 35 Fourth St. It is a free event.