Since the first International Food Festival, Maria Aleman and her team have been dedicated to representing their homeland, El Salvador. Lucky for us, this year is no exception! Maria is a native of El Salvador and lived there until she was 15 years old. Her husband Fredis was also born there. In fact, the 2 have known each other since middle school–they are now married 17 years, and are parents of 13 year old Kamila and 9 year old Diego.
Maria and Fredis are fortunate to have a very loyal team of family and friends that help each year. They could not do it without the whole Paniagua family, including mother-in- law Tomasa, helping to cook and serve. Other volunteers include an old friend of the family, Liseth, who has made pupusas for years. This group truly has fun and enjoys sharing the food of their country!
The El Salvador booth has quite a following, as they’re well known for their pupusas. Maria tells us she learned to make them shortly after her daughter was born– cheese pupusas were the only thing she would eat! Each year for the festival she uses fresh ingredients from the garden. The pupusas are made with green pepper, onion, garlic, tomato and mozzarella cheese added to the pork. Served with chopped cabbage, you will agree, they are “muy delicioso!”