What’s a Pupusa? [VIDEO]


When I’m traversing Long Island for interviews, press conferences, and other reporterly things, it’s not unusual that I get hungry.

Sometimes I have a lunch or dinner with me in my car; more often not. That’s when I start scouting “pupuserias,” Salvadoran delis that specialize in pupusas. Most recently, I stopped at a place called El Nopal in Bay Shore (1808 Fifth Ave., 631-952-9172), where you can grab a few pupusas and a pastry and eat it at a window counter:


For the uninitiated, pupusas are corn tortillas with a variety of fillings, not the least of which include cheese, refried beans, and “loroco,” a green flower bud that is known (at least anecdotally) as a healthy food. Each pupusa comes with a little side of cole slaw, in a zip lock bag if you’re ordering it “para llevar” (“to go”).

Pupuserias are more prevalent out here on Long Island than in Manhattan or Westchester County, but I still meet plenty of people who have never tried one. Part of the reason could simply be lack of familiarity: If you weren’t raised in a Salvadoran family, pupusas may not have made their way to your dinner table.

If any event, pupusa are so cheap—a dollar or two at most—that they’re worth a try, even for the gastronomically unadventurous.

Back in another era (the late 2000s), Long Island Wins even created a commercial about pupusas. Check it out here: