We are loving the proliferation of Salvadorean pupusa places in Cleveland, and the latest stop on our pupusa exploration is Pupuseria La Bendicion (93685 W 105th St, Cleveland, OH 44111) on the southwest side of Cleveland. There are so many quality pupusas here – stuffed masa patties – that we have switched over to pupusa craving in Cleveland, leaving the taco cravings to Chicago. However, you usually have to get off the beaten path to get your pupusa fix in Cleveland: like Katerina’s, Pupuseria La Bendiction is in a semi-industrial location near the airport. The strip mall location is small, but when we entered on a weekday night, it was nearly full, and pupusas were in full production. Rest assured, the pupusas are made to order – we even heard them! There is nothing like hearing the reassuring “pat pat” as the pupusa are being made by hand and tossed on the griddle.
The menu is pretty big, featuring all manner of Salvadorean dishes, with a small selection of pupusas stuffed with meat, cheese (or both). But the menu is not limited to just pupusas. For small dishes, antojitos, there was a range of sweet and savory options, including some we had never hear of, like canoas (plantains stuffed with white cheese). If you are in the mood for something more familiar, they also serve tacos, tamales, plantains and fried yucca. The selection of mains is meat-heavy but we have also heard some great things about the whole fried fish ($12). You can even get a variety of milkshakes including the unusual orange and spinach.
M, who has a bigger appetite, went for a combination meat platter ($14), which had enough food to feed an army. The plate included steak, sausage, roasted peppers, avocado, rice and beans, farmers cheese and two homemade thick tortillas, all delicious, with enough for several days of leftovers. L ordered a Loroco flower and cheese pupusa, which was big enough to feed a slightly smaller army. The pupusa was stuffed full of cheese – almost too full (if that is possible), but the richness was balanced by the spicy curtido slaw and hot sauce. We were impressed with the wide selection, price and made-to-order food at Bendicion, and we are definitely going to add them to our ever-growing pupusa rotation. You can even hear how fresh the pupusas are!