04/15/2015 07:20 am ET Updated Apr 15, 2015

Arepa Recipes That'll Introduce You To This South American Culinary Gem

You want this.

We're willing to bet you've eaten tortillas. Chances are you've tried a gordita (thanks to Taco Bell). You may have even heard of a Salvadorian papusa. But arepas? Those thick, round cornmeal flatbreads popular in Colombia and Venezuela -- the likelihood that you've had the opportunity to enjoy one of those are slim. Arepas have not yet entered the mainstream North American food consciousness, and it's time we change that.

Arepas are crisp on the outside, soft and chewy on the inside -- just like a great piece of bread. They can be fried, baked, boiled or steamed. Eaten plain, topped with butter or split in half and stuffed with sandwich fixings. Each and every possibility is great, but we're particularly fond of stuffing them.

Since you probably can't go out and buy one, you're going to have to make your own. But don't worry, it's totally worth it. Get the recipe to make arepas over here, and then stuff them with the ideas below.

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