The Guatita (Cow Stomach)
Around 1599 in Spain is born a dish called “callos”. Pieces of cow or ram’s stomach (tripe) cooked in different ways.
Callos is a Spanish dish with humble origins, as tripe, it’s always been an inexpensive ingredient. We know that it’s been consumed since the 15th century, based on the so called «wastes» of beef.
Some theories say that immigrants from Asturias brought the custom of eating “tripe” from their land, however, this is hard to confirm as there are many similar dishes out of Spain as well, for instance, caen style “tripe” in France.
Although callos a la madrileña is the best-known preparation, “tripe” is eaten all over the Iberian peninsula. Callos was established as a typical Madrid dish since the 19th century. Before then “callos a la madrileña” was served in lowly taverns and dining rooms, but when the luxury restaurant Lhardy included it in its menu it stopped being only a popular dish and its ingredients, considered only for the poor such as pig’s snout, trotters, and tripe are served alongside finer meats in the most elegant restaurants in Madrid.
Europeans brought the dish to Ecuador and by 1920 it was already eaten in Guayaquil cooked in the same blood of the cow. By 1942 the dish had already become popular all over the country.
However, unlike the Madrid style “tripe”, the “guatita” in Ecuador is cooked completely different and with other ingredients. Whereas the Spanish version calls for chickpeas and tomatoes, in Ecuador tripe is prepared with peanut paste and potatoes.
A dish you most definitely have to try if you come into Ecuador.
For your enjoyment, here’s the recipe of the traditional guatita:
To cook the “tripe”:
2 lbs beef tripe (washed and cleaned)
Juice of 1 lemon
10 cups of water
5 cilantro sprigs
4 garlic cloves, crushed
1 tsp ground cumin
To prepare the tripe stew or guatita:
½ cup of peanut butter
2 cups milk
3 tbs butter
1 cup diced red onion, about ½ red onion
2 cups diced white onion, about 1 whole white onion
½ bell pepper, diced
1 tomato, peeled, seeded and diced
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 tsp achiote or annatto powder
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp oregano
4 medium sized potatoes, peeled and diced into small squares
Recommended side dishes:
White rice, pickled red onions, tomato slices, avocado slices and aji or hot sauce
Cover the tripe with juice from half of the lemon, water and salt, let rest for 10 minutes and repeat. Rinse well the last time.
In a large stock pot, cover the tripe with 10 cups of water, cilantro sprigs, garlic, salt, and cumin, bring to a boil, reduce temperature and simmer until tender, about 2 hours, drain and save 2 cups of the broth.
Mix the peanut butter with ½ cup of milk to soften it (so that it mixes in better later).
Dice the tripe into small pieces.
Prepare a refrito with the butter, achiote, cumin, salt, oregano, chopped onion, bell pepper, tomato and garlic, cook until the onions are translucent and soft, about 5 minutes.
Blend the refrito, remaining milk and peanut butter sauce to obtain a smooth sauce.
Place the blended sauce, the 2 cups of reserved tripe broth, the diced potatoes and diced tripe in a large stockpot.
Bring to a boil, reduce temperature and simmer until the potatoes are tender and the sauce starts to thicken about 25 minutes.
Lightly mash some of the potatoes to help thicken the sauce.
Taste and add salt/pepper if needed.
Serve with white rice, onion, tomato slices, avocado slices and a good hot sauce.
Don’t miss the opportunity to try this dish and especially become a part of Montecristi Golf Club.
If you are interested about finding out more about ecuador, click here: http://www.montecristigolfclub.com/