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foodLa Paz

Chairo paceño – La Paz


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Chairo paceño – La Paz

Three important assertions concerning the CHAIRO PACEÑO give rise to this research work, presenting its certificate of origin and citizenship card indisputable. A contribution to the historiacion of Latin American cuisine.

1. The CHAIRO is a mixed soup that begins its path in the history of gastronomy CHARQUENSE (the territory now called Bolivia) in the 18th century, period of many changes - was the expulsion of the Jesuits in 1767 and the founding of the Viceroyalty of La Plata in 1776, He became part of ponds.

2. It most likely that during this time, and on the occasion of the first and the second siege of the city of La Paz, the CHAIRO , you have made your citizenship card in this beloved city, surely to the home in the form of "suck" or "uchu" , for later take its final form.

3. The CHAIRO, is the flag of the city of La Paz, product of the cultural FUSION - cuisine of two peoples, the AYMARA and Spanish; represents the fusion of 516 years and its current result, It means the evolution of mestizo gastronomy of this territory,today call "traditional Bolivian cooking".

Search for the origin of the Chairo, It is to look at the composition of ingredients, their culinary techniques and trends in the tastes of each season of our territory.

Making a detailed review of its ingredients, You can check that at least 10 of the 13 products that compose it, they are grocery items that the Spaniards brought to America. If we estimate that the Spanish arrived to the current Bolivian altiplano, in the year 1532, Surely it took to Acclimate the products that brought, teach their use and make a habit of consumption. This FUSION period would last a few 100 years and are already in the 17TH century (1600).

The chronicler COBO writes for 1653, that "in the middle of the 17TH century, the consumption of corn, wheat, beans,barley,Onion, parsley, cilantro, cumin, anise and other legumes, vegetables and condiments, It was widespread throughout the territory of the Viceroyalty. Garlic, good grass and melons were, between all the plants that were brought, those of higher consumption among the Indians".

In the mid-17TH century - writes the researcher Rosario Olivas Weston- "The workers meal was usually a large"pot"in which abundant more the meat rather than vegetables".
He also writes:"Had lots of sheep in the punas of the provinces of el Collao and las pampas and its meat was very cheap".

It is assumed that with this background, the Aymaras and Quechuas conquered, they ate in particular meat of sheep in "chalona" that were cooked in a broth accompanied by fresh meat and the other ingredients that could put your slow cooker (How already lets us relate the chronicler COBO, These other ingredients are mostly vegetables brought in from Spain and acclimated in the Highlands), non the less claim to copy for nothing no prescription European. What happens is that the way easiest to cook from old times (Since the fire and cooking - the world techniques) put ingredients in a pot boiling, without careful, leads somehow to some more or less happy ending. Thus was invented also safely the same "Spanish pot".

For 1776 (18th century), by reference in the Cookbook written by Doña Josefa Escurrechea , about the food that is eaten in Potosi, You can see that the Spanish Olla, It is crossed according to the following ingredients: Chest of cow - RAM - ham - Bacon - capones or laying fat - chickpea - garlic - Yerba buena - coriander - cabbage - Yucca - sweet potatoes - bananas - turnips - Quince - pears – Pumpkins- potatoes - geese - chuño - sausages - sausages - sausages - saffron - nail - cinnamon - pepper - mustard - parsley – AJI . You can see that the underlined products poseriormente will be an essential part of the future CHAIRO, and boil a number of products at the same time is the same used by Aymaras and Quechuas in the corresponding development of their "stews".

Probably if we continue down this road, It is easy to assume that indigenous women who were in domestic service, they were doing their own adaptations, mixing the European concept of the "pot" and "suck" Aymara, use as a base to thicken these wines, the Pope in different variables and the chalona of sheep as a key flavoring, almost as a tribute to the "sheep" that has the coat of arms of La Paz, granted by CARLOS V in 1555 (We already had 221 years of culinary mestizaje).

In 1781, TÚPAC CATARI besieged the city of La Paz on two occasions, sowing hunger and destruction among the Spaniards that lived. The city was liberated by Ignacio Flores and his army. They say that Indians see him get offered no resistance and withdrew without any battle. Flores entered the city leaving some food collected from the field, of the fields of the Aymara Indians, those who already cultivated carrot, pea, bean, wheat, good grass and they were owners of large numbers of sheep and also had extensive crops of potatoes and corn, they processed the chuño and were experts making chalona. The Spaniards who received this gift, they filled their stomachs tired preparing what could be more easily done in common way for all, chop everything and bring it to boil.

Hunger was such that these foods were also served other simple ways and common pot, such is the case of the implementation, also, La Paz dish.

For reasons that are unknown, Ignacio Flores is was leaving 80 men under the command of Sebastián de Segurola (That character whose image made the Aymaras of the Ekeko figure), soldiers who had to eat in a way not very sophisticated but strong. This powerful soup a little "pot", a little "suck", a little "uchu", It was transformed into "the soup", in "chairo".

CIRO BAYO, in his work "Chuquisaca or La Perulera Silver" , It has your stay of five years in Sucre at the end of the 19th century (1890) and mention some important things: It tells how they were the picanterías, naked reality of the hypocritical society, the love with the cholas and the chicha visits where they sell food spicy, "Ll'uchus", mainly made on the basis of meat and potatoes, speaks of the "stews" and the "chairo", This being the first historical reference of this word in the Latin American culinary use. Probably, the "picanterías" and silent indigenous domestic kitchens were laboratories where was super soup called CHAIRO, and something else, by this reference,We can deduce that the picanterías in Sucre were preparing this soup,respecting its name of CHAIRO PACEÑO; What gives us the idea of this stew already gained strength and brand in the second half of the 19th century.

In 1917, shortly after the civil war (1898-1899) between La Paz and Sucre, Doña Sofia Urquidi, write a recipe book that mentions the CHAIRO follows:
……….."Soaks usually chuño prieto", After clean it martaja well, is put into water and wash several times; then it is seasoned with meat or cured meat deshilada, Yellow AJI, whole green chilies, leaves of onion, good grass, etc. You must have enough broth."
So it is already easy to count that this succulent dish already has a serious presence in the city of La Paz ( probably the picanterías sintió diffuse it harder), Although it follows the process of culinary improvement.

After the Chaco War (1931 – 1936), appear different publications recipes of kitchen showing us eating habits, not of a high society as happened in previous publications, but rather of a rising middle class democratic and impoverished in their culinary tastes, sharing with the people poor (miners, peasants, artisans) their daily routine preparations. The Chaco War, It has left a deep mark in the village and they are times that is brewing a revolution of grands proportions (1952).

Luis Téllez Herrero (1946), Aida Aguirre Gainsborg Mendez ( 1945), Antonio Paredes Candia (1990), all in their own styles and picking up the best recipes of the season, They also show the presence of the CHAIRO PACEÑO, with some variables in its ingredients and especially in its final presentation, but the flavor base is strengthened with the aroma of the "chalona", the knots of lamb, the dad RIP, RIP carrot, the huacataya, the good grass, oregano, peas, bean, patasca, the nickname of wheat, martajado chuño, the green chili, colorado chili , parsley , the cheese and the chicharrón, which are based on free use attachments for flavor with more force the Chuck.

It is a bowl of soup mixed with European most ingredients but with the Aymara seasoning, the time that only a chef Bolivian and Paceno above all, You can give, for your palate to this strong seasonings combination be used as it is the inheritance that left us in our traditional medieval culinary techniques that the Spaniards brought.

Today on the internet you can see that ease some Peruvian brothers of the southern provinces (Ayacucho, Puno etc.) are awarded for if this Andean mixed recipe, This is mainly due to the influence that the city of La Paz in these geographies so close, so culturally the same. Populated by Aymaras who belong to the same race and nation of the Bolivian Aymara, Chilean or Argentine. Sure that culturally, everyone has the same taste and the same preferences and it is natural that they share the same, only that it is better to be clear that this soup originates in the geography of the capital of the Aymara - La Paz city culture - and is the product of a refined process of cultural FUSION with the Spaniards who consolidate this city and their children that live there, those who decided to put the 'iconic Lamb"in the coat of arms of the city and as a flag of your most important soup ingredient.

The rest is easy to suppose, with the same ease with which sold Bolivian gas in Puno, recipes cross borders, led mainly by the hand of their consumers who are of the same race and culture. We conclude by explaining that approximately up to 1780; Fist it imploded in the province of La Paz and became part of the audience of Cuzco. It was at this time that became ponds to the administration of the Viceroyalty of La Plata, i.e. that safely, the recipe of the mestizo "pot" which was produced in Potosí, He mentions the book of Doña Josefa Escurruchea,It was also prepared in Puno, by joining up to that time in the territory of Charcas. It is natural that they now eat CHAIRO PACEÑO in Puno, as well as the "papas a la huancaina" we eat without problems in Bolivia.

Antonio Paredes Candia, in his book, "National gastronomy and literature", It mentions a poem written by the poet Jorge Mancilla Torres:
"I believe in the throes of chuño
In a broth of chalona
And sweet beef,
Yellow AJI
Peas, on wheat
Carrot, patascka leno
(the taste makes effort),
Diced potato to the thread
And parsley on the edge,
Frugal of the chairo paceño

By: Guillermo Iraola Mendizábal
La Paz, 10 June of the 2008

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