Culture

These Smells Will Instantly Transport You Back To Your Cuban Childhood

There are some aromas that stay with you for life. These scents will take you back and remind you what it was like growing up in a Cuban home.

1. Abuelita’s mouth-watering frijoles negros.

CREDIT: hilditaperez / Instagram

Somehow her beans were never bland, perfectly cooked, and the greatest surprise after a long day. I’m still not entirely sure what she put in her beans, but I could never stop at the third serving and the smell was so… yummm ?.

2. Quenepas by the f*cking pound, bro.

CREDIT: foodklm / Instagram

It’s not just the smell of the delicious flesh inside the fruit. There is just something about smelling the burlap sack they came in when dad would buy it in bulk at the mercado. No matter how many you eat, cracking open a new one always let out the most heavenly smell.

3. Pan Cubano con mantequilla straight off the press.

CREDIT: silkpalm / Instagram

You know what I’m talking about. The bread is hard and warm with some butter still pouring out when you dunk it in your coffee. The smell of toasted bread with butter on top will always transport you straight to abuela’s kitchen.

4. The sweet and buttery aroma of guava pastelitos.

CREDIT: breadmanmiamibakery / Instagram

If you’ve never enjoyed one of these babies, you are seriously missing out. If just guava seems like it might be too sweet for you, try one with queso. Hell, just spend the day at the bakery trying to fill yourself up on pastelito after pastelito. The smell of that buttery, flaky crust will stay with you long after you leave.

5. The smell of abuelita’s house a.k.a. lavender Fabuloso.

CREDIT: themaddiva / Instagram

Maybe your grandmother used a different scent of Fabuloso. Regardless, you know just how important and relevant this scent was for a Cuban household. This smell still makes me feel right at home.

6. The strong, familiar scent of Certs mints.

CREDIT: mrkiki02 / Instagram

Me: Abuelo, quiero un dulce.

Abuelo: *passes Certs*

Me: ?

7. Smelling ropa vieja cooking all damn day and trying not to eat it when mami steps out of the kitchen.

CREDIT: foodblogmiami / Instagram

Okay. Maybe it wasn’t cooking all day but that smell knows how to fill a space and cling to your clothes. Admit it. You are currently reminiscing about that smell now, aren’t you. If you even tried to take a bite before it was ready all hell rained down upon you.

Mm-mm-mmmm.

CREDIT: Assassins / Warner Bros.

Who would have guessed that you could recall a smell just by looking at a picture?

8. Agua de Violetas a.k.a. baby’s first perfume.

CREDIT: labellaviajante / Instagram

Abuela, tía, mami, everyone had this somewhere in their bathroom and it smells like Cuban heaven. If you could bathe in this, you would. When you were younger you were covered in this stuff after every bath from head to toe.

9. Fresh fried croquetas de jambon.

CREDIT: sracroqueta / Instagram

Nothing says Cuban like the aroma of croquetas slowly wafting into your room. Or is it really just the smell of hot oil in a pot? Either way, these aromas are spellbinding.

10. Men smoking cigars during family reunions.

CREDIT: _jayzee19 / Instagram

And after church, before bed, during the game, and when they had nothing to do. Somehow they always had Cuban cigars even though they weren’t allowed to have Cuban cigars in the US. How did they get them? You never asked.

11. A refreshing malta while you sit at the counter and watch abuela cook.

CREDIT: raginpitbull / Instagram

Goya makes the best malta and you know it. But even if you can’t get the Goya version or if your family never stocked it, the malta drink was still a staple. It’s a smell you can never forget.

Abuela: *cracks open a malta*

Me:

CREDIT: Tam Coco / TBS

Doesn’t matter if you are 5 or 45, that smell will always make you remember being in the kitchen on a hot summer day while abuela was cooking.

12. Café Cubano.

CREDIT: mattrustwsbc / Instagram

‘Nuff said. Except there is never enough said when you are drinking café Cubano. Like, it is the fuel you need to survive and sometimes you might get annoying because you just can’t stop talking after you have some of this coffee and….

13. Leche condensada, which was in every dessert you ever ate.

CREDIT: charsfernandez / Instagram

The sweet, dairy smell still lingers in your nose to this day. Doesn’t matter what it was being used for, you always knew that the smell of sweet milk in the air meant that it was about to go down.

14. The wood rosary you got for your first communion and left on your closet doorknob the rest of your life.

CREDIT: rschllemonique / Instagram

For some reason, this rosary smells totally different than anyone else’s. It was also probably hanging on the doorknob of your bedroom door so you touched it every time you left the house.

15. Peeling open a fresh pack of dominos.

CREDIT: whoizc / Instagram

The smell of the wooden box mixed with the new, plastic smell of the dominos is a thing of Cuban dreams. It was also a definite sign that you’ve become an adult when you got to join in on the game. You didn’t know what you were doing but you were just happy to be included.

16. Lechon that you would have several times throughout the year.

CREDIT: oni_perez / Instagram

Either abuelita was practicing for the big day or there was just an abundance of pork to roast. Didn’t really matter because as soon as that lechon was ready to go, you were ready to feast!

17. Only a true Cuban knows the refreshing scent of Materva on a hot day.

CREDIT: typettigrew / Instagram

We will not be outdone when it comes to beverages. If you’ve never had a Materva, you don’t know what you are missing. It is nectar that clearly came to us from above.

18. These shoestring potatoes that were in your sandwiches, hot dogs, and everything else.

CREDIT: superlouieanlap / Instagram

The smell of salty cardboard still makes your mouth water because of these things. Now, where you might run into salty cardboard is your own business.

This is your brain when thinking about those shoestring potatoes.

CREDIT: RuPaul’s Drag Race / Logo

Should they be salad croutons? Sure. Can they be dipped in ketchup? Hell yeah. Just enjoy them however you can.

19. Talco powder because baby powder is just too basic.

CREDIT: elinamicaayala / Instagram

Especially the on in the yellow container that smelled like a gift from the gods. You’ve definitely poured all of it out onto the floor before and that was the most fun and scariest day of your life.

20. Who could have guessed that bland crackers and thin paper could smell so good?

CREDIT: mrthepete / Instagram

Throw some butter on those bad boys and they are great with café Cubano. (It all comes full circle.) Plus, those metal containers make great rice storage facilities because they are durable and stack so nicely. *checks Amazon for a bulk order*

21. And, of course, the best damn smell in the world, mojo.

CREDIT: regards_angel / Instagram

A little gift from the Cuban people to the world. You are very welcome. Now go use it on your chicken, beef, whatever because there it nothing mojo (pronounced Mo-Ho) can’t make better.

Now, please excuse me while I go drool in the corner.

CREDIT: The Simpsons / Fox

There’s nothing that smells better than a Cuban childhood because, well, you just read why.


Don’t forget to click the share button below! Share with your friends – they’ll be super jelly of your Cuban childhood. 

22 Moments From ‘The Sandlot’ That Prove Benny The Jet Rodriguez Was A Latino Legend That’ll Never Die

Entertainment

22 Moments From ‘The Sandlot’ That Prove Benny The Jet Rodriguez Was A Latino Legend That’ll Never Die

The Sandlot' Series In Development At Disney

There’s no denying that this brown-eyed heartthrob had a huge influence in the spark of your sexual awakening. Not only was Benny the cutest guy on the team, he also shined through as the team’s star player and went on to the Dodgers. All this despite the times and the white suburban neighborhood he lived in. 100% Benny is an inspiration and credit to Latinos who knock their dreams out of the park.

1. He wasn’t intimidated by other people’s success.

Benny easily makes friends with Smalls who he can tell right away is a bit nerdy and on the socially-undeveloped side. Still, he turns Smalls into one of his best friends and a pretty alright baseball player.

2. He’d do anything to defend your honor.

20th Century Fox

Benny was not about the bullshit. During the scene where The Tigers come to the sandlot, all of the sandlot players head off to confront them and throw their gloves to the ground. Not Benny though. My man, tosses his glove and picks up a baseball bat ready to knock out any 12-year-old boy who wants to take a whack at him.

3. He had mad style and knew how to take care of his shit.

20th Century Fox

Benny was all about the PF Flyers and valued their worth so much that he only used them to play for big games. Now that’s boi that knows how to take care of his shit.

4. And basically, every one of his looks was dreamy AF

20th Century Fox

Benny knew how to pull the doe eyes at every turn.

5. Even when he was slightly disgusted.

20th Century Fox

Whether he was proud of his own game or disgusted in the behavior of his teammates, he always looked fine.

6. Or,  feeling completely lost.

20th Century Fox

Literally look at that face.

7. He was a go-getter.

20th Century Fox

On a constant mission to improve his curves, throws, and slides, Benny took the game seriously and thus inspired his friends to do so.

8. He was basically the heart and brains of the team.

20th Century Fox

These boys woke up at 8 AM every day in the SUMMER to hustle around a hot sandlot and play with Benny. His amazing team leadership had everyone pumped and ready to work.

(Also, damn son bite that lip.)

9. He was generous as hell.

20th Century Fox

Benny takes sad sack Smalls under his wing and teaches him that to play baseball which ultimately gives the new kid on the block a reason to thrive and become a sports journalist.

10. He was also the Latino dream we need in movies today.

20th Century Fox

For it’s time, Benny’s role was pretty innovative. He wasn’t the Latino stereotype that persists in movies and tv show to this day.

11. He knew how to take stuff seriously.

20th Century Fox

You’d never go wrong with Benny as a BF. He literally took his life on the baseball field so seriously that he became a player for the Dodgers AND eventually a manager of the team.

12. And be a team player

20th Century Fox

So you know that in any of his relationships he’ll be right next to his partner putting in 100% doing cleanups, cooking, and baby rearing.

13. He knew how to rally.

20th Century Fox

Again, this boy convinced 8 roudy boys of different ages and backgrounds to group together and play baseball in the scorching hot weather in the SAN FERNANDO VALLEY.

14. And have fun under the worst circumstances.

20th Century Fox

In the movie, the kids face the grueling heat of summers, the disappointment of losing their last ball, being ridiculed and getting sick on Tobacco. Despite this, each and every time, Benny rallied and found a way to have fun.

15. He knows how to treat you right.

20th Century Fox

Benny proves that he understands the importance of team building early on when he pays for everyone to go to the carnival.

16. He had a bit of potty mouth.

20th Century Fox

Yeah, your boy knows how to curse.

17. He was a fan of the Dodgers.

20th Century Fox

He was a fan of yes THE BEST baseball team ever. And he went on to have an impressive career with them too.

18. He knows how to hit a ball.

He busts the guts off of their last baseball.

20. He knows that absolute power is a bad idea.

20th Century Fox

Benny refused to lead his team with an iron fist and instead often allowed his team to put decisions to a vote.

21. He’s basically a god of the spoken word.

20th Century Fox

Benny was a king of teaching others to improve. When Smalls didn’t know how to throw a baseball, Benny gave him a paper route analogy to show him how to throw properly. After that,  Smalls was able to pitch a mad ball.

22. Looked damn fine as an adult.

20th Century Fox

Seriously, get yourself a major leaguer like this guy.

Celia Cruz Would Have Slayed The 2019 Met Gala Camp Theme And Here Are The Looks To Prove It

Fierce

Celia Cruz Would Have Slayed The 2019 Met Gala Camp Theme And Here Are The Looks To Prove It

celia_cruz_la_reina / Instagram

Celia Cruz is as widely revered as the Queen of Salsa for her genre-breaking vocals as she is for the regalia she adorned on stage. After being exiled by Fidel Castro from Cuba, she brought her Afro-Latina culture to the mainland–undiluted.

Given how much her homeland tropical paradise influenced her fashion, there’s no question the La Reina would have brought all the azúcar to the 2019 Met Gala theme: “Camp: Notes On Fashion.”

She wore hibiscus flowers in her hair at black tie events as only she could.

Untitled. Digital Image. Huffington Post. 6 May 2019.

Not to mention all kinds of feathers to tie the whole look together. Cruz is Mother Nature and we just enjoyed our moments basking in her greatness.

They say birds of a feather stick together.

@celia_cruz_la_reina / Instagram

We’re sure that in 2019, she would have seen all the PETA footage and would be blowing up her own fashion line of faux feathered gowns. How about those wrist cuffs?

She totally crushed this peacock look.

Untitled. Digital Image. Huffington Post. 6 May 2019.

Oh, honey, it’s camp theme Cuba style, or didn’t you hear? Birds and flowers of paradise are what Celia would get to work with. Not only does she look flawless in her style, but she is also happier than ever in those outfits.

Remember when Cruz started this shoe trend?

Tina Hill Jones / Pinterest

Imagine her bringing this back with some serious tread for those talus, rocky trails. This is thee workaround for wearing heels outdoors. Lady Gaga should be thanking Cruz for opening the doors for this kind of footwear.

Meet a regal, cozied neck Queen.

@Musicstradio20 / Twitter

If you wondered whatever happened to turtle necks, they went camping. Cruz was rocking turtle necks for many decades and they just seem to suit her.

The wider the turtle neck, the closer you are to God.

@celia_cruz_la_reina / Instagram

She’d slay the red carpet via towering turtle necks or dressed as a songbird. Either way, Celia Cruz isn’t about being cold. She is just like our abuelas, after all.

Behold, an Ice Queen.

@celia_cruz_la_reina / Instagram

Are those faux icicles around her neck? Imagine with the advances of fashion technology today what this look would become at the Met Gala. It is clear that she is not shy about trying something new and different.

Back in the day, her more modest looks were classic favorites.

@celia_cruz_la_reina / Instagram

Bet you’ll see a pea-coat at the Met Gala tonight. You’ll never find a shivering Celia because she was prepared for all weather conditions.

She might be the only person to ever pull off a fringe poncho.

@celia_cruz_la_reina / Instagram

Ponchos may have been in for a minute in the 2000s, but when you’re “camping,” there are no rules. You can wear a poncho in the rain and in the cold and be feeling good about yourself.

Cruz was Poison Ivy before Uma Thurman.

@celia_cruz_la_reina / Instagram

She looks like a flawless goddess of nature and we are here for it. She gave us all of the Poison Ivy vibes we never knew we needed before Uma Thurman even tried it.

Celia Cruz giving us snow melted, pristine alpine lakes you just need to swim in.

Sweet home arts and crafts / Pinterest

Please note the embroidered neckwear and tell me she hasn’t dressed her whole life to win this theme. She has and she is still winning this theme because, well.

Cruz could easily win the Met Gala with this regal falcon imagery.

@BeanstalkGroup / Twitter

She’s beauty and she’s grace… and she’s also a stunning predatory bird who will comfortably have the rest of y’all for dinner. Okay. So no one wins but she would be the best dressed for sure.

Meet the elevated beanie look.

Latina Magazine / Pinterest

Your mami would never let you go outside without a hat to keep your head warm. Cruz was only ever seen dazzling.

Patterns are Cruz’s best friends and here’s the proof.

@celia_cruz_la_reina / Instagram

No zebras were harmed in this homage to Africa’s most recognizable mammal and the Aloe flower, native to the continent. Mother Nature.

This one is a bit toned down but imagine Cruz being given the challenge of camp and her incorporating her stars.

Untitled. Digital Image. Huffington Post. 6 May 2019.

The only way we can look at Cruz is to look up to her. Here she is as dazzling as a remote night sky and we can only imagine that her campy take on this would include a moon headpiece.

Color blocking at one of the highest levels.

Huffington Post / Pinterest

Here’s Cruz giving us both and the difference is night and day. This is a day to evening dress for sure. It even feels like a little bit clownish and would totally stand out at the red carpet.

She might have a toned down outfit but her sunglasses are giving us all the camp we want.

@celia_cruz_la_reina / Instagram

We just can’t get enough of Cruz and her looks. She knows how to deliver and we just want to see her shine all the time. If she was here today, the Met Gala audience would be gagging.

Whether she’s wearing literal tropical flowers…

@celia_cruz_la_reina / Instagram

As is her right. Most guests at the New York City Met Gala will only have memories (or Instagram inspo) in American desert, pine forests and Pacific alpine meadows for reference.

Or is embodying the essence of the Roseate Spoonbill bird…

bizqit Company / Pinterest

That bird is worth looking up. She looks like a flamingo with a wide flat beak and she gets her color from exclusively eating shrimp. You can’t find those birds in New England.

There’s no question that Celia would have owned the red carpet tonight.

@celia_cruz_la_reina / Instagram

Here she is wearing the Sun, the Moon, and a campfire ring all in one. In terms of light and heat, that’s the only way to summarize camping.

We’ll be thinking of you tonight, Celia.

Untitled. Digital Image. Huffington Post. 6 May 2019.

She would have been 92 years old, with even more experience to back up her look. What we know is that if Celia Cruz could walk the carpet, it would be full of hibiscus’, feathers and all things tropics. Te queremos, Celia!

READ: 21 Things You Didn’t Know About Celia Cruz, The Indisputable Queen Of Salsa

Paid Promoted Stories