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After Venezuela, Mexico and Brazil, let's continue our little tour of South America by feasting our eyes on the food of Ecuador. This small country, landlocked between Colombia and Peru, is not what is considered a gourmet destination par excellence. Nevertheless, Ecuador offers many culinary specialties that are worth sampling during a visit to this beautiful country.
Let's discover together 15 traditional dishes from Ecuadorian cuisine that will surely make you want to go on a trip!
ECUADORIAN CUISINE: BASIC INGREDIENTS
As in most countries in South America, Ecuadorian cuisine consists mainly of tubers, vegetables, fish (on the coast), meats (mainly chicken) and grains. Among the most popular ingredients are plantains (which look like giant green bananas) - consumed as a vegetable - corn, rice but also oca, a kind of acidic potato, and mashwa, a nasturtium.
ECUADORIAN CUISINE: SOUPS
Soups are an integral part of Ecuadorian cuisine. Do not expect a simple broth or a thick soup, but rather a real complete meal together in one plate.
Locro is a soup of potatoes and avocado, topped with cheese and lupine seeds.
2. SOPA DE BOLAS DE VERDE
The sopa de bolas de verde is a cabbage and plantain broth accompanied by plantain dumplings, onions, cheese, peas and beef. It will keep you full the whole day! (See main photo)
Another popular soup is sancocho, where meat (usually chicken) is cooked in a savory broth with cassava, plantains, corn and herbs.
4. CALDO DE PATA
Caldo de pata is a broth made with beef foot and mote, a big white corn very common in Ecuadorian cuisine.
5. SOPA DE FRIJOLES
The sopa de frijoles is a soup of potatoes, cabbage and pumpkin garnished with dry red beans.
ECUADORIAN CUISINE: SEAFOOD DISHES
Like its neighbor in Peru, Ecuador specializes in ceviche ... with some variations! In this country, you will discover the chochos ceviche, a vegetarian ceviche of lupin (a native legume), tomatoes, red onions, coriander, lime that locals usually eat for breakfast.
The corviche is a delicious plantain fritter stuffed with white fish. But if you prefer, there are also versions with meat or even vegetarian.
8. SECO DE POLLO DE JENGIBRE
This is a chicken stew typical of Ecuadorian cuisine with juicy, tender and ginger-flavored meat, usually served with rice or potatoes.
9. CARNE COLORADA
Carne colorada, which can be translated as "colored meat", is meat (beef or pork) marinated with achiote seeds (which possess a natural reddish color), beer, garlic, onion, caraway and oregano.
Chaulafan is an Ecuadorian recipe based on chicken with sautéed rice, bacon, onions, peppers, peas, carrots, scrambled eggs, raisins, spices and fresh herbs.
ECUADORIAN CUISINE: THE ACCOMPANIMENTS
11. PAN DE YUCA Y QUESO
It is a yuca flour bread (easily found in Asian or African grocery stores) and mozzarella cheese.
12. TORTILLAS DE VERDE
Tortillas de verde are plantain patties (similar to pancakes) stuffed with cheese. A delight!
ECUADORIAN CUISINE: THE DESSERTS
13. PASTEL MARACUYA
A variation of lemon pie with ... passion fruit!
14. EL RICO COCO
This is a coconut / vanilla dessert cream to enjoy warm or cold, a bit like an egg custard.
COLADA MORADA: THE ECUADORIAN DRINK
The last item on our list is not a dish per se but a typical drink of Ecuadorian cuisine: the colada morada. This is drink is made from red fruits, spices and purple corn flour prepared to celebrate the day of the dead.
Hungry for more?