Making arepas is relatively simple, and you only need a few basic ingredients. Here’s a basic recipe for making arepas with just three ingredients:
- 2 cups pre-cooked cornmeal (also known as masarepa)
- One teaspoon salt
- 2 1/2 cups warm water
Prepare the Dough:
In a large mixing bowl, combine the pre-cooked cornmeal and salt.
Gradually add the warm water to the cornmeal mixture, stirring continuously with a spoon or your hands. Continue adding water until the dough comes together and forms a smooth, soft consistency. The dough should be pliable but not too sticky.
Let the Dough Rest:
Allow the dough to rest for about 5-10 minutes. This relaxing time helps the cornmeal absorb the water, making the dough easier to work with.
Shape the Arepas:
Take a portion of the dough and roll it into a ball, then flatten it into a disc shape. The size of the arepas is up to you, but they are typically around 3-4 inches in diameter and about 1/2 to 3/4 inch thick.
Cook the Arepas:
Preheat a non-stick skillet or griddle over medium heat.
Place the shaped arepas on the hot surface and cook for about 5-7 minutes on each side or until they develop a golden-brown crust. You can also bake them in the oven or grill them.
Once both sides have a golden-brown color, transfer the arepas to a preheated oven (about 350°F or 180°C) for an additional 15-20 minutes. This ensures that the arepas are fully cooked on the inside.
Allow the arepas to cool slightly before slicing them open. You can fill them with a variety of ingredients like cheese, ham, avocado, beans, or any other toppings of your choice.
Enjoy your homemade arepas! They are a versatile and delicious staple in many Latin American cuisines. Feel free to experiment with different fillings and toppings to suit your taste preferences.