-Grubbing in ChicagoGuatemalan Snacks in Logan Square
The food world lost an icon this past weekend. RIP to Jonathan Gold of the LA Times. Out of all the well known people in the food writing world he felt the most relatable to me. His love wasn't the Michelin starred spots or the places featured on Eater's heat list. He loved the far off spots hiding between a dry cleaners and convenience store in a less traveled neighborhood. He showed the people of LA countless food gems he found by venturing out to areas where most Angeleno's didn't go. As regular readers know this has always been my M-O. So today I share my most recent love when it comes to the Mom and Pop spots. Guatelinda Bakery is an immigrant owned Bakery on Diversey in Logan Square. I passed by here many a time while driving by or entering Lost Lake across the street.
Locals Favorite in Logan Square
The blue awning at Guatelinda always caught my eye but for whatever reason it took me a while to try them. Probably the same reason this site is still going strong 10+ years later. Which is bc of the fact there will always be hidden gems in Chicago. Guatelinda Bakery qualifies as one hiding in plain sight. When you enter you'll be greeted by one of the family members. Mom and Dad immigrated to LA from Guatemala before moving to Rockford and then settling in Chicago. The bakery was opened in 2005 and today they supply most of the city's Guatemalan's with tastes of home. Even though they call themselves a bakery they also serve a handful of savory Guatemalan snacks such as Chuchitos. Kind of like a tamale but not. Tamales in Guatemala are wrapped in banana leaves but chuchitos are wrapped in corn husks. These are tomato based with pork and they're so good. Lots of flavor in there.
Chuchito at Guatelinda Bakery
My favorite item from the menu board is the Pan con Chile sandwich. I wasn't aware of it's existence until I saw it on the menu then looked it up on google. Turns out that putting a chile rellano in between some bread is a popular form of lunch in Guatemala. Guatelinda Bakery bakes fresh bread on site and it works great for this sandwich. Fantastic lunch if you're looking for something quick. The rellano itself was a bit different than the Mexican version. I noticed lots of red peppers inside with the cheese.
Pan con Chile Sandwich
The bakery case is also a great place to explore. There's always been something new on my visits. One of the items I loved was that which you see below. Sorry but I forgot what the daughter told me it was when I asked her for a suggestion. All I know is if you like really flaky pasties, which I do, these are for you. No picture but I sampled a Rellanito which is a dish made with sweet mashed plantains stuffed with refried beans, chocolate, and cinnamon. The assembled balls are deep-fried and and then served with powdered sugar on top. I love trying new to me things for the very first time. It's exciting.
Pastry at Guatelinda Bakery
Also of note is the fact they carry a small supply of Guatemalan groceries. Stuff like soda, hot sauce, chips, and even a few Chino-Guatemalan supplies. Turns out Chinese food is big in Guatemala and the Guatemalan people love chow mein the way Peruvians love fried rice. One day I'm going to take a stab at Guatemalan style Chow Mein in my own kitchen with supplies from here. Check them out.
Groceries at Guatelinda Bakery
3149 W Diversey Ave
Chicago, IL 60647