SAN DIEGO — If you haven’t heard of a pupusa, this is your month to try one.
“Basically like a stuffed tortilla and you can stuff it with different ingredients. The most popular are beans, cheese and pork,” said Monica Aguilar, daughter of owner of Cuscatlan Salvadorean Food in Kearny Mesa.
The popular Salvadorean dish can be found all over San Diego, from North County to the South Bay.
Juan Alvarenga, owner of Cuscatlan Salvadorean Food, opened his restaurant in August 2021.
“Wanting his own restaurant was always something that he wanted to do and so during the pandemic, he stopped working where he was and then he was was like, ‘I’m just going to go for it,’” Aguilar said.
Alvarenga opened his restaurant in Kearny Mesa after his brother opened the first Cuscatlan in Escondido years ago.
“We are going to prepare some banana empanadas, delicious and traditional from El Salvador,” Alvarenga said.
Alvarenga immigrated from El Salvador, the small Central American country bordering Guatemala and Honduras, over 30 years ago. The family restaurant is something Aguilar is really proud of, saying it’s her parents’ American dream.
The menu ranges from traditional Salvadorean food, including the popular pupusas, which can be stuffed with anything, according to Aguilar.
“We have jalapeno and cheese, chipotle and cheese, different varieties. We have carne asada as well,” she said.
FOX 5’s Clara Benitez’s personal favorite, growing up in a Central American household, are fried yuca and fried pork — also known as yuca frita con chicharron.
This Hispanic Heritage Month, the Alvarenga family is excited to be able share their culture with the rest of San Diego.
“Having everybody learn a little more about El Salvador through us is an awesome experience,” Aguilar said.