18 years working as journalist and editor for the main Guatemalan newspapers and several local magazines. My fields: art, culture and history.

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Tuesday, 13 December 2016

Don’t “peas” me off

A European tongue probably finds that Mexican and Guatemalan food share many ingredients and recipes; cooking some dishes is even very similar. As far was possible for me I promised not taste Latinamerican food abroad Guatemala.  But after two months and a half living in Galway I broke my pledge.

NZ was visiting Dublin from Italy. When we met he told me he took the first bus to Galway once he left the Dublin’s airport.  “I’m not the only one crazy about knowing the west of Ireland”, I thought.

It was the first time we talked in life but knowing him was like spending time with an old friend. I became his tourist guide the weekend he stayed in town, the last days of November.

The first day we just walk around and we visited some iconic places: Mc Donagh’s (fish and chips), Tigh Neachtain (for the first pint of Guinness) and Carroll’s (for some traditional irish music, and more pints). He went early home because a trip to Cliffs of Moher was waiting for him the next day. When he returned we had a meal in The Front Door / Sonny Molloy’s.

I went later to The Blue Note. But what I did there is for a long and different story. Let’s keep the good memories this time and join us for dinner.

I think NZ ordered a sandwich and I chose “nachos” from the menu, a light course, I thought because I knew the size couldn’t be bigger than Guatemala, where you can have a 3 pounds personal dish or nachos.
Super Nachos from Monoloco, a restaurant located in Antigua Guatemala.

I was curious about taste that famous mexican snack cooked in an irish restaurant. I must say in my country is a very popular snack too; a perfect dish when you going out with friends and your intention is getting drunk.

Nothing bad, 8/10 stars. The irish nachos were well but I missed some latin flavours, like tomatoes mixed with spices and some pieces of chicken or beef spread over the food.

Something funny happened when I took a little container with something green inside. “It’s guacamole!” I said, but some seconds later my tongue realised my mind was wrong. It wasn’t avocado. That evening I confused guacamole with mushy peas that obviously I found terrible at the beginning.

That reminds me another “food incident”. I was in The Arans enjoying a Guinness beef stew when I asked to the waitress for my pint. Her question mark face was a sign that I probably misunderstood something. “Oh no, it’s a Guinness stew because the beer is one of the ingredients in the recipe. The name doesn’t mean there is a pint with your meal”, said her. 

That evening was the last time I saw NZ, he came back to Dublin next day and then to Italy. I’m sure we’ll meet again in Ireland, NZ next time remind me please order something without peas.


  1. Well see in my defence of ole Ireland, I am well travelled but some Irish aren't as travelled, so the bridging of giving u green peas instead of Guacamole, in the mind of an Irish man is "ah sure it's green & it looks like Guacamole, sure nobody will notice... which is typical of the Irish, they think nobody will notice it & if they do, they won't say anything... so Braliem here's my question to you, did u say it to anybody that the green stuff on the plate with ur nachos wasn't Guacamole, or did u just quietly sit there & eat it?

  2. I left the peas, just tasted them once. No, I didn't say a word. It was a really small portion, maybe for 3 or 4 nachos and I focused in the cheese and in the chatting.

  3. I am the famous NZ and I am glad to have met Brà and to be always his friend. Next time we will meet in Guatemala or Italy ��