Muffins recipes

National dish of Paraguay

flag of Paraguay

  • Independence: 15. 5. 1811
  • Capital: Asunción
  • Official language: Spanish, Guaraní
  • Population: 6 561 748
  • Area: 406 752 km2
  • International code: PY
  • Currency: Guaraní (PYG)
map of Paraguay

Sopa paraguaya

Ingredients:

  • 1 to taste cooking spray
  • 2 tablespoons parmesan cheese
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 cup  onions
  • 0.33 cup  green bell peppers
  • 2 cups  fresh corn kernels
  • 0.50 cup  low fat cottage cheese
  • 1.50 cups  cornmeal
  • 0.75 cup  cheese
  • 0.50 cup  skim milk
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 0.50 teaspoon black pepper
  • 4 large egg white
  • 0.50 teaspoon cream of tartar
Sopa paraguaya is national food (dish) of Paraguay

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 400°F. Coat a 9 inch round cake pan with cooking spray. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and set aside. Heat butter and oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add onion and bell pepper; cook 5 minutes or until soft. Place onion mixture in a food processor. Add 1 1/2 cup corn and cottage cheese; process until almost smooth, scraping sides of bowl occasionally. Place pureed mixture in a large bowl. Stir in remaining corn, cornmeal, cheese, milk, salt, and pepper. Place egg whites and cream of tartar in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at high speed until stiff peaks form. Gently stir one-fourth of egg white mixture into batter; gently fold in remaining egg white mixture. Spoon batter into prepared pan. Bake 30 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. (Cover loosely with foil if top becomes too brown before the center is done.). Cool in pan 10 minutes on a wire rack. Cut into wedges.

Info:

Sopa paraguaya is a traditional Paraguayan and Northeastern Argentine food. Literally meaning "Paraguayan soup", sopa paraguaya is similar to corn bread. Corn flour, cheese and milk or whey are common ingredients. It is a spongy cake rich in caloric and protein content. According to the Paraguayan folklorist Margarita Miró Ibars, sopa paraguaya is "the product of Guaraní-Spanish syncretism. The Guaraníes used to consume doughy food made of corn or manioc flour, wrapped in güembe or banana leaves and cooked between hot ashes. The Spanish introduced cheese, eggs and milk, which were added to the food made by the Guaraníes..." Sopa is similar to another corn based Paraguayan typical dish, chipahuazu or chipaguazu, except that the latter is made with fresh corn. The consistency is a little bit more like a cheesy souffle and less like a savory cornbread. This dish is often served with a Paraguayan beef soup.

A story of the origin of the dish involves Don Carlos Antonio López (the founder of the Paraguayan state and president of the country between 1841 and 1862) and one of his cooks (called machú in the Guarani language). It is said that the great governor, a famously obese man, liked a white soup elaborated with milk, Paraguay cheese (fresh cheese), egg and corn flour. One day the machú mistakenly added too much corn flour to the mixture. Near noon, she found herself with two problems: first, the mixture was too thick for tykuetî; second, she didn't have time to start over the process, or replace the favorite dish with another. So, showing off a decided attitude, a mix of fear and wit, she poured the mixture into an iron container and cooked it in the tatakua ("hole of fire", a rustic Guarani oven made of clay and adobe), from which she obtained a "solid soup". Don Carlos, after tasting it, found it very delicious and immediately named it "sopa paraguaya". Another story, no less credible, says that in ancient times, this food was made with fresh corn and cooked in the ñaúpyvú (clay pot), not in the "modern" oven inherited from the colonizers. Everything suggests that the first Iberians who arrived in Guarani lands called food boiled in the ñaúpyvú "soup". It is believed that finished adding "Paraguayan" (demonym that was used in colonial times to denote the area of the Jesuit-Guarani missions), to distinguish it from the soup (broth) prepared by the Europeans.

 
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