Food

Dirt Cheap Eats 2008: La Caraquena

$5.99 arepas at La Caraqueña (300 W. Broad St., Falls Church; 703-533-0076).This restaurant has staked its reputation on the sometimes fried, sometimes griddled corn cakes known in Venezuela as arepas, a grab-and-go snack that is to that country what burgers are to Americans. The menu lists nearly a dozen satisfying varieties, including ham and cheese, shredded beef known as carne mechada ($6.49), and scrambled eggs and onions. They make for deeply satisfying overstuffed sandwiches. But a plain arepa ($1.99) called viuda, or “widow,” is no less wonderful. Open Wednesday through Monday for lunch and dinner.

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