Everything you need to know about Choclo, Inca Corn & Peruvian Snacks | #1 Best Culinary Advice

An In-depth Look Into Inca Corn

Incan agriculture (including Choclo/Inca Corn) was the climax of centuries of grazing and agricultural farming in South America’s high-elevation Andes, Amazon basin jungles, and coastal deserts. 

Inca agriculture was further distinguished by the diversity of crops cultivated, the non-existence of a capitalist system or cash, and the unique processes by which the Incas structured their society.

Choclo, Inca Corn and Peruvian Snacks | Best Peruvian travel Advice

Chuo (freeze-dried potatoes), quinoa, maize, and jerky (dried meat), were among the products kept in tremendous amounts for the Inca officialdom and army’s sustenance and as a buffer against poor crop yielding years. Inca corn was one of their everyday staples.

The Incas put a high value on agricultural storage, erecting thousands of storage silos all over the major cities of their empire and along their enormous road system. 

The Incas kept meticulous chronicles of the items and quantities held on the knotted ropes branded as quipu, which they applied in place of a written language.

The Incas put a high value on agricultural storage, erecting thousands of storage silos all over the major cities of their empire and along their enormous road system.

The Incas kept meticulous chronicles of the items and quantities held on the knotted ropes branded as quipu, which they applied in place of a written language.

Peruvian Corn

Peruvian Corn, Choclo and Peruvian Snacks

Cuzco corn (named after the Inca empire’s capital city), also known as Choclo or Peruvian corn, is Andean field corn with a bulbous, extra-large kernel.

It does not grow well on the flatlands. It is mainly consumed in certain parts of South and Central America, particularly Colombia, Ecuador, Bolivia, and Peru.

While North Americans enjoy the little kernelled white or yellow sweet corn of the wide central plains, Peruvians eat Choclo, the giant corn of Peru, and they don’t require dental floss after that.

This is because it is about five times the size of corn from North America. It has a creamy texture and tastes corn-like yet nuttier.

Peruvian Corn, Choclo and more Peruvian Snacks

Its chewy kernels, despite their size, allow for a more delicate dining experience because they don’t get stuck between your molars. In addition, they are starchier and less sweet than North American corn. 

 

There are over thirty variations of Peruvian corn in varying sizes and colors, and all equally tasty. However, the big corn from Cusco is among the best.

Incas Corn

Incas were conquerors of their tough climate conditions, and the ancient civilization has much to teach us today. They created varieties of crops that were drought-resistant such as quinoa, corn, and potatoes.

Irrigation canals and cisterns slithered and curved down and then around the mountains, and they dug terraces into the hillsides, going steeper as they advanced from the valleys towards the slopes.

Cisterns deteriorated over time, terraces were abandoned, and canal beds started to dry up. This process started when the Spanish enforced their own crops and drove people to leave their customary areas to cultivate and dig for the conquistadors.

People are reviving old rituals in a remote section of the Andes today. They are reconstructing terraces and irrigation systems, as well as recovering ancient crops and planting practices, as a result of recent archaeological studies. 

This is partly due to the fact that Incan agricultural practices are more efficient and productive in terms of water utilization.

However, these contemporary farmers think that the Incan traditions can provide easy answers to assist communities in maintaining their food supply in the context of climate change.

Ways to Use Incas Corn

Frozen Peruvian corn is available at many Latin American supermarket stores in the United States and globally. 

It is used to make numerous recipes. For illustration, Cancha Salada, Humitas, lawas (light soups made from very young corn), Tamales, soups, sweet pastries, bread, and Chupes (thick Andean soups), are all cooked using Choclo.

Other options include merely boiling with a large slice of Queso Serrano (Andean cheese) or Queso Fresco (white cheese). 

Arepas or Tortillas, despite the amount of maize they devour, are not an element of their diet, as is the case in many other corn-producing countries.

Ways to Use Incas Corn

Try Out This Recipe

INGREDIENTS:

– Goat Cheese
– Stuffed Rocoto Chile

  • Goat cheese 160 grams
  • Onion confit 150 grams
  • Sour cream 120 grams
  • Salt
  • Stem and seed 7 rocoto chiles (but leave whole), rinse and dry

Sauce

  • Poro poro flesh 1 gram
  • 50 grams carrot
  • thinly sliced 100 grams red onion
  • thinly sliced 2 grams celery
  • thinly sliced
  • Salt to taste

Guinea Pig

Butcher and debone a whole guinea pig (reserve the bones for sauce).

Split it lengthwise.

  • Minced garlic 5 grams
  • Salt 2 grams
  • Olive oil 10 millilitres
  • Diced carrot 25 grams
  • Diced piquillo peppers 25 grams
  • Choclo kernels 25 grams
  • Diced turnip 25 grams
  • Brussels sprouts leaves 25 grams

To Assemble and Serve

  1. Butter 1 ounce
  2. Vegetable oil 2 tablespoons
  3. Salt Baby corn 7 ears
  4. 28 choclo kernels
  5. 7 Brussels sprouts
  6. 7 baby turnips
  7. 7 baby carrots
  8. Muña oil
  9. Microgreens
  10. Thin potato pure
Peruvian Snacks

Method:

METHOD:

Goat Cheese Stuffed Rocoto Chile

Combine onion confit and goat cheese in a small bowl. Season with salt and fold in the sour cream. Fill the rocoto peppers with the goat cheese mixture. Set aside, covered.

Sauce
Roast the guinea pig bones in a small saucepan with the carrot, celery, poro poro, and onion.

Immerse in water and leave to boil all night. Season with salt, strain through a chinois, cover to preserve the warmth.

Guinea Pig
Heat the immersion circulator’s water bath to 140°F. Season the guinea pig with garlic and salt, then drizzle with olive oil. Place remaining ingredients in a vacuum bag and seal. Cook for 12 hours sous vide in the immersion circulator.

To Assemble and Serve
Prepare and preheat the grill. In a sauté pan, heat the oil over high heat. Remove the Guinea Pig from the immersion circulator and place it in a sealed vacuum bag for 7 minutes. In a separate sauté pan, melt butter and sauté kernels until golden brown.

Season with salt, strain, and set aside to keep warm. Divide Guinea Pig into seven equal-sized rectangles.

Sprinkle Guinea Pig with salts and sear skin-side down to achieve a golden-brownish crisp in the remaining pan’s oil, around 340F. Season to taste with salt and grill veggies until browned and tender.

Plate a stripe of potato puree using a sauce spoon. Top with Guinea Pig and a little Sauce on the narrow end of the streak.

Arrange a Brussels sprout, an ear of baby corn, a baby turnip, and a baby carrot in a cluster on the streak’s thick end.

Arrange three Stuffed Rocoto Chiles (sliced into rings) around the veggies. Place four kernels between the veggies and the Guinea Pig. Dress with microgreens and a dash of muña oil.

Rocoto & Choclo Peruano

Peruvian Snacks

This giant corn has been used to create other snacks and beverages too. Some of these include:

  • Choclo Peruano

Among some of the most delicious Peruvian snacks made from this big corn, is the Sweet Peruvian Corn Cake (Pastel de Choclo Peruano).

It’s suitable as a late morning coffee accompaniment or a lazy afternoon dessert. This sweet pastry is best served with a hot brew but can be topped with ice cream on a hot day.

In 1935, Joseph R. Lindley, a British immigrant, invented Inca cola in Peru. It is more frequently mentioned as the Golden Kola. Inka cola is a fruity, sweet soft drink. Its flavor is similar to cream soda or bubble gum, according to Americans.

It has been branded as having an acquired taste. Its intense hue is enough to scare off the uninformed. It is often described as a champagne cola. Except for Peru, the Coca-Cola Company holds the Inca Kola trademark worldwide.

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