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Carlos Fuenmayor Carlos

Food & Service

Back in early May I was invited to be part of the Pan American Food Festival by the festival culinary curator Mary Luz Mejia and immediately said yes “Si”, how many times would I get the chance to see and share the stage with some of my culinary heroes? not often.

With my good friend Maricel Presilla.


The culinary line up included, Cuban- American chef and historian Maricel Presilla, Colombian chef and Professor Charlie Otero and Toronto’s own Chef, writer, teacher and good friend Donna Dooher “Donna so sorry I missed it, I had specially wanted to attend your demonstration”

With Colombian chef Charlie Otero.


It was exciting to be reunited with my culinary hero Maricel Presilla and my good friends Mary Luz, husband and co-host Mario Stojanac.

The festival also featured our talented local Pan-Latino chefs, Mexico’s Paola Solorzano, Indalecio Marroquin,  Colombian’s chefs Claudia Gaviria, Natalie “cookie” Martinez and Venezuelan chef Mena Bustamante, Argentinian chef Elliott Gomez, Cuban chef Pedro Quintanilla, Peruvian’s chefs Luis Barreto, Alvaro Valencia and of course me, Sabrosito.

My demonstration featured one of my favorite dish form my native country of Venezuela Called “cachapitas”, better known as corn cakes. I used all local products including sweet Ontario corn, fresh cheese, butter and basil.

cachapitas con queso fresco y albahaca

Neither the rain nor the traffic could impact the fun had by all. The festival was a great success!!

The reason for the festival as festival director Daniel Garcia-Herreros mentioned on his site.

It offers visitors a festive opportunity to experience the best of the region’s cuisine and
culture, in a celebration that expresses the strength of our continent’s vibrant
Featuring fine restaurants, specialized food producers and talented chefs from across the
Americas, the Festival offers typical regional dishes, as well as the native ingredients that give them their unique flavours. These delicacies are complemented by the colourful sights and sounds of visual arts, music and folklore from the 41 countries of the Pan American continent, including North, Central and South America, and the Caribbean.”

With Mary Luz, Daniel, Maricel, Mario and me! from right to left.

The festival also featured great local and international musicians such as; Mexican duo Café con Pan, Cuban singer and writer Luis Mario Ochoa, Uruguayan harp player Martha Mazzoleni and her group, Orquesta la Fantasia, Canada’s Tuna Lazos de Amistad, French Canadian duo Bootat, Colombian group Los Maritos and Toronto’s Henry Vivel & Orchestra and the list goes on.

the featured country this year was Colombia, the festival also show-cased some of the best of artists, films and writers from all the Pan- American countries.

I wanted to say Mil Gracias to the organizers, volunteers, chefs and all the people who came out to support the festival, it could not have happened without you.

On a personal note; would like to thank my crew, Patrick, Taylor, Charlie and Michael.
Very Special thanks to Adrian, Carolina and Diane for your support on the weekend.

Love you guys.
Yours from the first Pan-American festival in T.O.


Pan-Latino Cooking class.


I will celebrating the last  days of summer with my Pan- Latino cooking class , coming up on Tuesday, September 17th at Kingsway LCBO.

2946 Bloor Street West.

For more info and to book your seat, please call  416 239-3065,

On the menu!

Arepitas de reina Pepiada.
Classic Venezuelan stuffed corn meal cake with avocado and chicken salsa


Sopa de Palmito.
Ecuadorian style Heart of Palms soup.


Carapulcra Peruana.
Peruvian-style Pork and Dried potato stew

Docinhos de Amendoim.
Brazilian Sweet peanut croquettes.


Yours celebrating my Latino roots @kingway lcbo.



Local Latino Cooking Class

Hola Amigos!

Come by and have some fun with my Local Latino cooking class.

Tuesday, August 13th, from 6:30 to 8:30 pm at SummerHill LCBO

10 Scrivener Square, Yonge and Summerhill.

For more info and to book your seat, please call  416-922-0403

On the menu!

Sopa de Agucate con cocombro y menta
Avocado, cucumber and mint soup


Pimentones con queso fresco y tortillas
Sweet peppers with grilled queso fresco and fresh tortillas
Tomillo, achiote lomito de cochino con salsa de maiz y berro
Thyme, achiote marinated local pork tenderloin with corn salsa
& Watercress salad


Frutas locales con ron y crema la vaquita
Fresh Ontario summer fruits, rum and  Mexican style “crema la Vaquita”


Yours Celebrating Latino American food and culture at the Summerhill lcbo!




Local Latino @Kingsway LCBO!

Come by and have some fun with my Local Latino cooking class.

Tuesday, March 26, from 6:30 to 8:30 pm at Kingsway LCBO

2946 Bloor Street West.

For more info and to book your seat, please call  416 239-3065,

On the menu!



Changua [Colombia]
Milk, potatoes & egg soup

Arepitas con queso fresco [ Venezuela]
Corn meal patties with local fresh cheese

Cosido Limeño [Peru]
Beans, potatoes, corn & pumpkin casserole

Ximxim de Galinda [ Brazil]
Chicken, shrimp, cashews & coconut milk stew

*Alfajores con dulce de leche
Almonds, vanilla short bread cookies w/ caramel sauce

* Alfajores are made all over the Americas



Mmmm…. Arepitas!



Yours celebrating Latino American food and Culture.


This year organizer and host extraordinary Ivy Knight invited 7 chefs to the salsa battle to top down the reining queen of salsa, Panamanian Chef Rossy Earle, which it made it very interesting and it made a great challenge for da Queen.

With Chef Rossy Earle and the boys at the drake kitchen, before the battle….


So there we were the chefs from The Pork Ninjas, La Carnita, El Gastronomo Vagabundo, Esé and Yours Truly. the event was sponsor by  Fortuna Mezcal one of the best Mexican Mescales out there.

I made a 7 roasted chillies and tomatillo salsa.



More salsa! Mas Salsa!

This year the crown was taking by the boys of la Carnita. We had lots fun and a big headache the next day.

With the winning team from la Carnita!
Long life to La Salsa and Mezcal….

Yours from the Salsa battle @the drake!

My sister Luz Adriana and I had plan to go and visit our mother’s family together in Colombia for many years now and I thought this would be the year, but because of the instability of our home country of Venezuela, she couldn’t leave her family and her home. But that is another story for another day….

So I connected with some of my Colombian cousin’s daughters and sons trow twitter and facebook and this is how the reunion went down.

I landed on January the second of this year at the El Dorado Int.airport in Bogota [Colombia’s capital] at around 5.30 pm after a few hours of being delayed due to bad weather, I was welcome by an entourage of family and friends with a banner saying “Welcome to Colombia Carlos Fuenmayor” I felt a bit nervous you see, because I had not seen my aunts and uncles and their families for about 30 years [ That was the last time I was in Colombia on holidays with my older brother Jairo] I could not believe how much love and kindness came from them to make my incredible welcome a happy one..It was like we had never been apart. I felt very blessed and yet so sad that my sister was not there with me to feel what I was going trough that overwhelming love…From the airport we went to my cousin Claudia and her husband Gildardo home. They kindly offer me their home to stay as long as I wanted..The food and drinks did not stop that night, it was just incredible and that my friends was only the first night…..


With my aunt Transito [right to left and center] my cousins Marta, Claudia. Paula, Andres and Katherine.

Celebrated my 45th birthday this year with my Colombia family and it was wild and so much fun.


With  my cousins [right to left and center] my cousins Marta, Claudia. Paula, Andres, Luis, Luz Alba, Gildardo , Katherine and Luna the dog in my lap.

For the next 3 weeks I travel and meet and visited other cities and families from all over Bogota. We travel to Cundimarca, Tolima, Ibague, Cajamarca, Armenia, Pereira, Montenegro and the coffee region of Caldas where the best coffee of Colombia comes from.


Going up the Moserrate Mountain in Bogota.


Down the mountain on the cable car.


Simon Bolivar square in down town Bogota



At the Gold Musuem, wow just incredible. 24k gold warrior body suit.

At the salt cathedral mine in Zipaquira.


On our way to the top of the Colombian Andes in Caldas state.

By week four I decided that I needed a break from the mountains and wanted the sun and the beach, after all I was on holiday, so I decided to travel to the Old City of Cartagena , one of the most influential historical city in the Americas. I was there for two weeks. Made some new friends and meet up with friends from Ottawa and Toronto which made my stay fun and unforgettable one.


At the root top of the Decamaron Hotel in Cartagena de Indias.


A local woman on the beach selling fruits.

By week six I was back in Bogota, I saw more family and upon my arrival , they had planed a going back to Canada party for me all over the city, I was enchanted by the historical colonial architectures and the beauty of the new city and it’s people….I found a very safe and dynamic Colombia, you see my mother emigrated to Venezuela in the early 70 because of the violence and drugs, in which at the time became a very dangerous and unsafe place to live.

I heard stories from my family and friends and at the time could not understand the conflict and what they went through. I am happy to be the witness of how much the people of Colombia including my family have changed things around with hope and determination for the best.I had a great time and now have much more respect for this beautiful, amazing and complex country.

Sadly after six weeks my holiday came to an end on February the 12th. And had the come back to reality. It was really hard to leave Bogota and this new lovable and incredible family…….Thank you Mom for giving me greats brothers and my incredible beautiful sister and their families and also for my new found family, thanks Mom for this incredible gift.

My aunt & uncle Transito and Roman Bolivar [from left to right] my cousin Claudia and her friend Claudia Patricia.


In a personal note; I wan to say Mil Gracias to my aunts Transito, Rosa, my uncles Roman, Simon Bolivar, my cousins Claudia, Luz Alba, Marta, Luis, Johana and their families, specially to the Gonzalez family Gildardo, Doris, Claudia y el primo for making my connection an incredible one.

Yours, celebrating Family and roots from Colombia,



On Sunday, November 25th I was invited to the *Fundaciôn Alma Llanera [The soul prairies Fundation] to their the annual *Parranda Navideña [Christmas bazar] Venezuelan party at the Japanese Culture Center.

I wanted to go to this event for years, but I couldn’t make it, so this was my first time going to event, which on his 8th year now. La Parrada Navideña is a party that happens every year all around Venezuela to celebrate the Christmas spirit with lots of food, family and friends.

In this case is to try to get all  Venezuelans expats to come a celebrated our version of Christmas here in Toronto.

* Local Chicha, Pan de Jamon, Hallacas and fresh Cheese
I ask my good friend Adrian Marquez to come with me to event, to which Adrian happy responded Claro yo voy! which translate to “Yeah, I’ll go!” ! When we got there I felt very emotional, seeing all this people with their families and friends  together, so far  away from our land and families…. It brought great memories of my childhood in Venezuela, then when we started  to smell the food [ Hallacas, Pan de Jamon, Arepa, Chicha, Tequeños and other typical Venezuelan Christmas dishes] and the Gaiteros started playing I couldn’t hold my tears back. I was thinking about my family and friends back at home and how much I miss them, felt sad, but mostly happy to be there. It was an experience I will never forget.

I meet up with the event organizers Rebecca Sarfatti and Nubia Godoy-Benchimol and they told me some of the money made that evening will be donated to help school programs and other charities in need in Venezuela.

With event organizer Rebecca Sarfatti
To my surprise I was mentioned and honored with other fellow Venezuelans for our continuous work in the community here in the city, for that, I am very grateful and very proud.
Thank you to Rebecca, Nubia, all event organizers and volunteers for making us feel at little a bit home in our Corazones.

Feliz Navidad y que Dios me los bendiga.

Yours Celebrating La Parranda Navideña with 600 other Venezuelans @the Japanese Culture Center


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*Spanish for: "Mmm. Wow. That's good!"