Fiambre (Guatemalan Salad)

This month, Eat the World is headed to Guatemala.  There were many great recipes to choose from when I began researching Guatemalan cuisine, but after seeing a recipe for Fiambre, I was fascinated.

Fiambre is a cold salad, traditionally served during Dia de los Muertos, often boasting an impressive 50+ ingredients!

Though I was intrigued, the large ingredient list initially swayed me away from this recipe.  Yet, I kept coming back and decided to find a way to make it work.  My salad clocked in at 42 ingredients (the addition of seafood and more sausage varieties would have made up the deficit).  I ended up planning my weekly meals very conscientiously to use up the excess ingredients (lunch salad using extra marinated veggies, sandwiches, veggies sides, and bean soup) rather than make a fiambre to serve a small army.

The Fiambre itself has an interesting, though uncertain history.  Some sources state that the fiambe was invented in the 1770s when a Spanish commission visited a household that was not prepared for a visit, so threw together all that was available into a salad…

Another story, again from the 1770s states that an important person came to visit a household and a maid was sent to buy groceries but got distracted so bought  little of everything which became fiambre…

Finally, the fiambre is a salad in which each family brings what they can to a Dia de los Muetros celebration which is all mixed together to make one cohesive dish.  

Regardless of its beginnings, this last version is one that is still used today to celebrate Dia de Los Muertos in Guatemala. 

The kids were rather skeptical when the fiambre showed up on the table, however, once they took a closer look and realized that they actually like most of the ingredients on there, they were happy, even if they did pick around to grab all the meats!

Hubs and I thoroughly enjoyed the salad (it reminded us of an Italian antipasto salad, but with more ingredients) and were happy that even this small version had leftovers for a couple days!

Check out all the wonderful Guatemalan dishes prepared by fellow Eat the World members and share with #eattheworld. Find out how to join Eat the World here and have fun exploring a country a month in the kitchen with us! 

 Amy’s Cooking Adventures: Fiambre (Guatemalan Salad) 
A Day in the Life on the Farm: Pepian de Pollo 


Adapted from Amigo Foods

Roasted Veggies (400 degrees)

½ cup asparagus

¼ head cauliflower

½ cup grape tomatoes

¼ cup corn

¼ cup peas

1 tablespoon olive oil

Roasted Veggies (350 degrees)

1 beet, peeled & sliced

1 carrot, peeled & sliced

¼ onion, slice

1 clove garlic, minced

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

Dash dried thyme

Dash dried basil

Salt & pepper 

Uncooked Veggies 

¼ cup garbanzo beans

¼ cup kidney beans

¼ cup pinto beans

¼ red bell pepper, diced

¼ cup baby corn

4 Green olives

4 Black olives

1-2 cups spinach

3-4 cups romaine lettuce

Meat & Cheese

2 slices salami

2 slices prosciutto

2 slices capocollo

8 slices pepperoni

2 slices ham

¼ cup cooked shredded chicken

2 tablespoons mozzarella pearls

2 tablespoons cheddar, cut in chunks

2 tablespoons gouda, cut in chunks

1 tablespoon feta, crumbled

1-2 hard boiled eggs


2 tablespoons olive oil

2 tablespoon cider vinegar

½ tablespoon dijon mustard

½ tablespoon worcestershire sauce

1 teaspoon dried parsley

1 teaspoon dried basil

1 teaspoon dried thyme

1 teaspoon dried oregano

¼ teaspoon garlic powder

¼ teaspoon onion powder

Salt & pepper

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.  Line a baking sheet with parchment or a silicone mat. Place the asparagus, cauliflower, tomatoes, corn, and peas on the tray in separate sections and drizzle with olive oil.  Bake at 10 minute increments, stirring occasionally.  As different veggies finish roasting, transfer them to a heat proof bowl to cool slightly.  

Lower the oven temperature to 350 degrees F.  Add the beets and carrots.  Stir the onions and garlic in with teh beets.  Season with oil, balsamic vinegar, herbs, salt, and pepper.  Roast for 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally or until the vegetables can be easily pierced with a fork.  Cool and refrigerate until ready to use.

While the second set roasts, add the three types of beans and bell pepper to the bowl with the first set of veggies and stir to mix.  Make the dressing by placing all the dressing ingredients into a small blender and blending until mixed (alternately the mixture can be whisked).  Pour over the bean and vegetable mixture and stir to mix.  Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours or overnight to marinate.

To serve, arrange the lettuce and spinach on a serving platter.  Top with marinated veggie mix.  Begin arranging the beets, carrots, baby corn, meats, cheeses, eggs, and olives over the fiambre and serve.  This recipe serves 4-6, a traditional fiambre will serve a crowd

 Amy Eats the World in...

Cuba: Ropa Vieja (Slow Cooker Beef)
Ireland: Cheesy Potato Soup with Irish Ale
Thailand: Chicken Satay
Kenya: Crunchy N’Dizi (Peanut Crusted Bananas)
Sweden: Rodbetssallad med Getost (Grated Beet Salad with Goat Cheese)
New Zealand: Kiwi Burge
France: Fougasse (Provencal Flatbread)
Argentina: Chimichurri Sauce
Mexico (Halloween Special): Pan de Muerto (Day of the Dead Bread)
India: Spiced Golden Mil
Poland: Chrusciki (Angel Wing Cookies)
Ethiopia: Buticha (Hummus)
England: Wizarding World of Harry Potter Leaky Cauldron-Style Mini Cottage Pie 
Georgia: Lobiani (Bean-Stuffed Bread)
Mexico: Crispy Pork Carnitas
Cambodia: Loc Lac (Shredded Beef with Lime)
Israel: Chicken Albondigas (Chicken Meatballs)
Finland: Sima (Lemonade) 
Puerto Rico: Arroz con Tocino  (Rice with Bacon)
Egypt: Ghorayebah Cookies
Ukraine: Scuffles (Rohalyky) Cinnamon Crescent Rolls
Portugal: Bitoque (Steak & Eggs) 
Germany (Christmas Special): Lebkuchenherzen (German "Gingerbread" Cookies) 
Trinidad & Tobago: Trini Macaroni Pie 
Iraq: T'bit (Slow Cooked Chicken & Brown Rice) 
Fiji: Fijian Creamy Lentil Soup (Dhal) 
Senegal: Cafe Touba (Senegalese Spiced Coffee) 
Colombia: Cañón de Cerdo (Colombia-Style Pork Loin Roast) 
Soul Food (United States): Oven-Baked Ribs with Cola BBQ Sauce 
Bangladesh: Shemai (Sweet Vermicelli Pudding) 
The Netherlands: Dutch Farmer’s Cheese Soup (Boerenkaas Soep) 
Laos: Khao Piak Sen (Lao Chicken Noodle Soup) 
Jamaica: Chicken &  Pumpkin Soup 
Vietnam: Vietnamese Chicken Porridge (Chao Ga) 
Sudan: Red Lentil Soup (Sudanese Addas) 
Luxembourg: Bouchée à la Reine (Vol-au-Vent)
Uruguay: Pasta Caruso

Lesotho: Borotho Bread
Scotland: Tattie Scones
Native American Tribes of North America: Wild Rice, Squash, & Corn Soup
Guyana: Butterflaps
Réunion Island: Rougail Z'Andouille
Australia: Fairy Bread
Turkey: Simit Bread

Philipines: Pork Siomai


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