“I followed my heart and it led me to the Fiestada” ~ Me
Does anyone else out there remember the Fiestada?
If you were a kid in the late 80’s and early 90’s, I’m talking to you.
The Fiestada was an octagon shaped, little slice of pizza-like heaven.
It had a thin, cardboard-like crust and was topped with tomato paste? and tiny pieces of hamburger? and yellow cheese? that kind of all melted/congealed/slightly burned together to form a crispy, but mushy, kind of special goodness.
Had my subsidized school lunch program allowed it, I would have stockpiled my ration all week and blown it all on Fiestada day.
I day-dreamed about how I might score a second helping. I wished the school would announce a contest for which the grand prize would be a lifetime supply of Fiestada’s.
In the lunch room, I scarfed mine down and then circled the cafeteria like a vulture, hoping a classmate might be willing to share.
Are you going to eat that? Are you going to eat the whole thing? What!? How the fuck do you not like Fiestada’s!? Could typically be heard coming from my salivating, Fiestada juice stained grubby little mouth.
I loved them so much, that I once asked the lunch lady for the recipe….and she pointed to a long, white, nondescript box with plain black lettering that said, “Fiestada” and then I just assumed they had been made in Mexico, because they were far too exotic to be American fare.
“I’ll go there someday. I’ll go there and eat my weight in Fiestada’s” I told myself, because I was not a kid without goals.
Some people have cherished memories of home cooked meals, served round a table full of happy family members in a warmly lit dining room….a fire crackling in the background.
I have cherished memories of linoleum flooring, fluorescent lighting and the heart burn inducing, probably ADD causing, artery clogging, early on-set heart disease producing, special little octagonal round of awesome that was….the Fiestada.
To this day, I am so obsessed with recapturing that precious moment, that I have scoured the internet in the hopes of tracking down my beloved.
I’ve found recipes on Pinterest that claim to be an exact replica of the original, but there was nothing “homemade” about what I ate in those days.
I want the original.
The one that sat in the industrial sized freezer of an elementary school cafeteria, safely wrapped in BPA leaden plastic.
But I don’t think it’s meant to be. The best I could find was this thing….made with Whole Grains.
And I literally can’t even….