Pastel de Choclo Pure Corn Goodness!

by Chef Noly and Bella
(Chicago, Illinois and Santa Cruz, Bolivia)


Chef Noly: Bella receives many recipe requests on her website. This week I am featuring a recipe requested by Rosa. Rosa is searching for an easy to make Pastel de Choclo recipe. There are many Pastel de Choclo recipes available. The most common recipes you will find are for the Chilean version of a meat pastel or a variation using chicken. The Pastel de Choclo recipe Rosa is looking for is the Bolivian meatless, corn and cheese pastel.

Visit my food blog to view the recipe then click on the BoliviaBella.com link to return here to Bella's Wacataya Wednesday page. Chef Noly.



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Mar 18, 2014
Riquícimo el pastel de CHOCLO
by: Julieta Bolívar

Como el PASTEL DE CHOCLO, no hay otro. Muy saludable y mil gracias a la persona que se le ocurrio preparar la HUMINTA Y PASTEL DE CHOCLO. QUE VIVA BOLIVIA.Creo que uno extraña mas su comida, folklore, y su querido Pais cuando estas lejos. Saludos a todos los Bolivianos y Bolivianas que viven lejos....
Atte: Julieta Bolívar

Jul 08, 2010
Pastel de Choclo Pure Corn Goodness
by: BoliviaBella

It's hard to figure out exactly how to describe the consistency or texture of Pastel de Choclo. I want to say it's like the Bolivian version of cornbread, but it's not so "bready". More like a quiche, only it's not so "quichey" either. It's just really, really delicious and you'll have to try it for yourself.

The word "choclo" comes from the Quechua word chuqllu which means "tender corn or tender maize". Bolivia has dozens and dozens of types of corn. The corn kernels vary as much in color as they do in size and flavor. Some have soft edible kernels, and others have really hard kernels that take a long time to soften when you cook them so they're used for other types of recipes. Some can?t be eaten. These are dried and ground into cornmeal or cornflour, or are used as livestock feed.

Incredibly, the LEAST commonly grown or consumed corn is the one that is MOST popular in North America. Mostly when we shop for corn here at the markets we find large white kernel corn (similar to the corn hominy is made of). Bright yellow corn cobs are not common here. To get yellow "sweet corn" (as it's called in parts of the USA) we usually have to buy it canned.

Still, the rainbow of corn colors in Bolivia is stunning. Depending on the recipe you plan to make, you can buy purple corn, orange corn, white corn, yellowish corn, red corn, blue corn, even semi-green corn.

Want to hear something funny? In Eastern Bolivia, blond people are called "chocos". Some think the Spanish coined the term because centuries ago a Spaniard had a friend he used to call "choclo" (this we know from letters he wrote) because his hair was blonde like cornsilk. And it is believed he left the letter "L" out. True or false? People call me "choca" all the time cuz I'm blonde. Maybe it's true but who knows! Bolivia thrives on myths and legends!

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