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Recipe: Peruvian Corn pie (pastel de choclo)

Recipe: Peruvian Corn pie (pastel de choclo)
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The magic of food is that it can transport us to dear moments of our lives, they make us relieve the warm feeling of better times, and this happens specially with desserts. In most of Peruvian homes, desserts are as big of  a part of the table as any other dish , and one of the most popular desserts is the peruvian corn pie. With it’s fluffy delicious consistency this is the perfect recipe to earn an abundant meal.

 

You can prepare a big batch of Peruvian corn pie and have it for dinner along with a cup of coffee or a glass of cold milk, you can have it as dessert, you can send it to your kids for lunch and you can even freeze it and store it for a few weeks and then reheat it and still enjoy the same incredible taste.

 

A brief history of Peruvian corn pie

As it happens with many dishes all over Latin America, corn pie is said to be born in Peru. However, we can trace this dessert back to pre columbian times by historians, when it was offered to Dominicans as a present. We can even find the basic Peruvian corn pie recipe in old transcripts from the Clarisas nuns in Lima. 

 

Of course several countries across the continent have similar recipes, with basically the same ingredients but small variations and some others changing it so much as to make it a salty dish. In Peru, though, it’s considered a dessert because of its ingredients and consistency that result in it resembling a cake or a pancake.

 

The Peruvian corn pie takes only 20 minutes to prepare the mix and an hour and 15 minutes to bake at the most, it gives a total of an hour and a half. So it's safe to say you can bake this delicious recipe on a rainy afternoon and it will be ready for dinner. This recipe serves 12 portions.

 

Ingredients for Peruvian corn pie:

  • 4 cups of corn, try to find it in small grains
  • ¾ cup evaporated milk
  • ½ cup of white sugar (you can experiment with other types of sweeteners if you like)
  • ½ cup of white all purpose flour
  • 3 eggs, big in size
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • ½ cup raisins (these can be optional but they’re part of the traditional Peruvian corn pie recipe)
  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon of anise
  • 1 pinch of salt (don’t add more of this)

 

Preparation:

  • Preheat your oven to 356 ºF (180 ºC)
  • Put 2 of the 4 cups of corn, condensed milk and vegetable oil in a blender. Stir or mix in slow speed.
  • Keep adding the rest of the corn while the mix starts to get more even.
  • Add the 3 eggs and ½ cup of sugar.
  • Add baking powder teaspoon, a dash of salt and anise.
  • While you add ingredients to the blender keep checking that the mix is not so liquid.
  • Add the flour.

If your mix is not thick enough it will take longer to cook, you need if to be thick but not pasty.

  • Butter your pan and spread some flour evenly on it.
  • Pour the mix and add the raisins, trying to spread them well.
  • Bake it for about and hour. Stick a fork or wooden stick to check if it’s done. If it’s not, you can leave it for another 15 minutes but not longer.

 

If you want to make it with a stronger, more clear taste of dessert, you can add a little bit of vanilla extract to the mix. It will make it even sweeter.

 

After taking it out of the oven, let your Peruvian corn pie sit for half an hour or until it’s cool enough for you to take it out of the pan. It should have a spongy consistency and a little bit sticky from the corn mixed with the sugar; and it should have a bright yellow color unless you used a different kind of corn. It’s perfect to eat along with coffee, tea, plain milk and you can even spread jam or chocolate on it if you have a really sweet tooth; but we should warn you it is sweet enough on its own!

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