This is a paid piece from BibiSol Bodega and Provisions.

Simplified: A new restaurant concept from the owners of Salas Salsas will bring a new appreciation for corn to downtown Sioux Falls. Here's what you need to know about BibiSol Bodega and Provisions' nixtamal menu.

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Marcela Salas and her mother Patricia Burbine began selling their salsa at the Brandon Farmers Market in 2020, later expanding to the Salas Salsas food truck and retail brand.

Their dream has long been to start a restaurant, and that dream is coming true with BibiSol, located in the former Mrs. Murphy's location on Phillips Avenue downtown. And the mother-daughter duo is hoping BibiSol can someday boast a decades-long legacy much like Mrs. Murphy's.

"My hope when I moved here to the USA, in my brain I thought, 'oh maybe one day I'll open a small restaurant or something," Burbine said. "But the years passed, and (I thought) no, ok, it's not possible ... but now I know it's possible."

What is nixtamalization?

It's a way of preparing corn by first soaking it – typically overnight – in an alkaline solution and then grinding it to create the masa, which is then used as the basis for tortillas and tamales.

"Through that alkaline process, it allows for the water to soak into it and soften (the corn)," Salas said. "It kind of unlocks all of the vitamins and minerals as well. You see a lot of civilizations historically that, once they found that nixtamal process, flourished."

Nixtamalization is also an ancient, indigenous practice. Burbine recalls seeing her grandmother waking up early to grind the nixtamal into dough for the day's meals.

In addition to the in-house nixtamalization, BibiSol is planning to source local proteins and is working to someday use South Dakota-grown corn as the basis for its nixtamal.

What's behind the restaurant's name?

"Bibi" is a nod to Salas nickname from her older sister, who called her "bibi" instead of "bebé," the Spanish word for "baby."

  • Bibi is also a Persian word that means "queen" or "matriarch," Salas said. She sees it as recognizing the privilege of having opportunities her grandmother and other women and her family never had in starting their own business.
"We're creating a generational wealth that wasn't there before," Salas said. "We're creating a generational story that wasn't there before, and I think that reclamation of power has been so important to us."

"Sol" means "sun," which of course is a needed component to corn production, Salas said. It's also a nod to Burbine's middle name, "Soledad."

Can I buy salsa there?

You bet. That's the "bodega" part of the name.

BibiSol will have all of Salas Salsas products available, as well as tamales and some other grab-and-go items.

What happens next?

The restaurant is under renovation, with plans to open at the beginning of June.

If you want to support the work of this small, family-run business, you can join the Cuate Founders Guild here.