Pachamanca means “Ground Pot”. It is a typical dish from the Andes of Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia and Chile. The food is cooked to the heat of preheated stones that are finally covered with soil. Beyond a meal is a community rite where the pachamama is shared and thanked for the food that it provides to the inhabitants. This is a cooking process to taste healthy foods cooked with hot stones in a large ground pot.

This process begins on a farm that under ancestral techniques and agroecology forms produce a great variety of organic vegetables and fruits with great quality. This farm is an ecological example of producing food without chemicals. In this place, you can see all the productive capacity and the goodness of the agroecology techniques. This place invites you to learn in a practical way these types of techniques that are in absolute harmony with the environment, which promote the consumption of healthy products and the development of local markets.

On the farm, we will harvest some vegetables to be part of Pachamanca, which is one of the oldest forms of Andean cooking. This process consists of making a hole in the ground and heat the bottom with hot stones, wood and aromatic leaves. The first step to do a Pachamanca is to heat for more than three hours the female stones. In the bottom of the hole, we orderly introduce hot stones and cover the walls with tablecloths. In the base, we will placed potatoes, sweet potatoes, corn, and different kind of grains, which are inside a textile bag; another layer is organized by fruits like: bananas and pineapples.

Finally, we placed the meat that is wrapped in leaves of cabbage and spices like branches of rosemary. Sometimes, the meat is covered with achira leaves. Before placing the lid, the food is protected with a hemp of cabuya and yute. Then, we will cover it for some hours. The time of cooking will depend of the food. After two hours the food is removed from the ground and served to the diners. These are accompanied by a salad, chili crushed in stone and a sour orange soda sweetened with panela.

By: Mayra Serrano