The Morocho is a type of corn that grows in South America and no, you will not find a translation of the word. It has been used since pre-Hispanic times for various recipes. Today in Ecuador it is used to make flour for empanadas, and also in soups and of course, the simply called morocho which is one of the most traditional drinks in the country, one you can taste also in our restaurant at Montecristi Golf Club.
Trying to find out just how much time this beverage has been made in the country is quite difficult. When it comes to traditions handed down from generations before time becomes foggy. The morocho as it is made today may be very different from the drink the indigenous people drank many centuries ago. Also, many traditions got mixed between peoples from the coast and the Andean region a while ago.
However, morocho as a traditional drink, as we know it nowadays is not very old, comparably speaking that is.
It begins with the corn. Our ancestors drank it just after cooking it with water, sometimes leaving it overnight for the kernels to soften. Milk, sweet spices, raisins and brown compact sugar were added with the arrival of the Spanish and it became a colonial mongrel drink.
Like we were saying, as a traditional drink, the morocho came after the traditional “colada”, a heavy drink made out of banana flour, corn starch, even other kinds of maize. Morocho begins being made at home and today you can find it being sold in small stores and even street carts. Normally it will come paired with bread, cassava bread (another traditional dish) or little tartlets.
It is traditionally served late in the afternoon or at night time and it is served hot, maybe to achieve a more nutritious effect, or use it as a heating beverage. Almost no one drinks it cold.
And now for the recipe:
About two cups of morocho maize
6 cups of water
2 liters (about 8 cups) of milk
3 or 4 cinnamon sticks
¼ – ½ cup of sugar (to taste)
½ cup raisins
Leave the morocho kernels soaking overnight.
The next day put it in the milk and cook it at low flame until it is soft (about 3 hours) mixing now and then so it doesn’t stick and burn in the pan.
Add the sugar and the raisins
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