For this weeks edition of Sugar Bomb Sundays, I decided to get some avena helada (literally translated as cold oats) a cold, milky looking beverage made out of oatmeal. Depending on who your supplier is, avena can range from deliciously comforting to absolute crap. So what makes a good avenita? Three things; it has to be cold, thick and creamy. Think of it as a Colombian version of a milkshake. Unfortunately, to save costs a lot of places water down their avena and sometimes even serve it lukewarm which I think is nasty. Stick to the three rules and you’ll be fine.
Avena can be found at local Colombian eateries and sold straight out of street carts. Personally, I prefer the street cart variety. They tend to be fresher and tastier. Also, as a travelling foodie, there’s nothing more adventurous than getting down on some street food.
Avena is traditionally eaten with a type of Colombian cheese bread called pan de bono (pan meaning bread) or with buñuelos, a deep fried Colombian bread that’s a traditional snack eaten during Christmas. As a bonus, the street cart where I dined at make pan de bono with a bocadillo (guava jam) filling. It was the perfect morning tea and my only regret is I didn’t go for seconds. I guess I’ll just have to wait until next Sunday.