Tujure - White Corn and Plantain Juice


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Tujure (pronounced “too-hoo-RAY”) is a Bolivian drink native to the Northeastern state of Beni, Bolivia’s second largest agricultural and cattle ranching area. There are enormous banana and plantain plantations here. I think that’s one reason why plantains are so prevalent in “la comida beniana” (food from Beni).

bolivian food recipes drinks beverages tujure

This recipe sounds a little gross, but it’s actually very tasty! Bolivia is really one of those countries where you can try things you never imagined.

To make green plantain peel ash, green plantain peels are thrown on an outdoor fire and burned into an ash. You don’t have to use ash for this recipe (nor should you start a fire just to get the ash). I’ll provide a substitute below.

Also check out my recipe for Pululo (made from green plantains too - but NOT ashes).

Ingredients (Serves 6)

4 cups of water
1 pound of dried white corn, broken into tiny pieces
1/4 cup of corn flour
1/4 cup green plantain peel ash (see substitute below)
6 cups of milk
Sugar to taste

Instructions

Cook the corn and corn flour in a large pot with water and add water if necessary to ensure it doesn’t thicken too much and burn. When the corn is completely soft, add the green plantain peel starch. Cook over low heat for one hour. Take off the stove and allow to cool completely. Add cold milk and sweeten to taste. Serve really cold.

Alternative

OK. Skip the banana peel ash and do this: Buy 2 or 3 green plantains and slice off the peel with a knife. On the inside of the peel there is a thick, sort of stringy substance. Scrape it off with a fork – all of it, as much as you can get without actually adding the peeling.

At the moment you are adding the milk and sugar, add the banana peel scrapings and blend. Serve very cold. It’s actually yummy! I know, doesn’t seem possible, does it.

Want to hear something else that's really strange? Banana peel ash was traditionally used as a natural fertilizer AND also as a natural bleaching agent! Blech! Double blech!



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