martes, 8 de diciembre de 2009

Humitas from the bottom of the earth

It’s not the first time I praise Latin American food and all its qualities, for its flavour, delicious ingredients and colours. If you think about it, we couldn’t live without all the ingredients that Latina America has given us, and still is, like the tomato, the chilli, the potato, vanilla, turkey, avocado, beans, pumpkin, custard apple, quinoa, pineapple, peanuts, achiote, and of course, chocolate! Thanks so much, Mexico!

I tried Humitas on my first trip to Chile, and was gob smacked by its simplicity, and yet lovely flavour and presence. It’s presented as a firm closed little parcel.
There is a different version for each country the one I am presenting here is the Chilean one, but you have Humitas in Peru, Ecuador, Bolivia, and Argentina. The noun “Humitas” derives from quechua, the language if the Incas. Tamales are related to Humitas and they are lovely and delicious as well. You can serve Humitas with a salad or a homemade tomato sauce.

I don’t like to process the sweetcorn that much, I like to see some of the pieces, but you can ground them as much as like. The husks are perfect for wrapping the filling, if you cant get hold of them, you can use the ones they sell for the tamales ( you will have to previously soak them in water) , or even kitchen foil, it’s not the same, but it helps...
The filing is made out from ground sweetcorn and a mixture of onion and basil surrounds you with a lovely smell, then there’s no way back, you fall in love with these little ones, and want to eat them, devour them and learn to make them.


6 pieces of corn in husks
1 tablespoon turmeric
2 tablespoon olive oil or lard
2 small chillies chopped (optional)
1 cup of milk
Small bunch fresh basil, chopped
1 onion finely chopped
Salt and pepper


Remove the kernels of the corn with a knife and reserve the husks.
Fry the onion in the oil or lard until translucent, add the chillies if you are using them, the basil the salt and pepper.

Place the sweetcorn in a food processor, and put them in a saucepan, add the onion and basil mixture and the cup of milk. Cook this over a low heat until it thickens. If you see it doesn’t add more milk.

Now we need to make the parcels, to do this place to husks overlapped and place two tablespoons of the mixture in the middle. For the packet by folding the bottom, the sides and the top, tie with a cooking string or a husk strip.

Half fill a saucepan with salted water and place the humitas when it boils, close with a lid and cook for an hour. Place them in a sieve and let them rest for 5 minutes to drain the excess liquid. Serve with scissors...

17 comentarios:

  1. Que receta y fotos más espectaculares!! me encanta...

    Un saludo

  2. Yes! Thank you Mexico and Latin America for all those delicious ingredients and foods. I had never heard the term humitas before, but they look delicious. I'd really love to try them.

  3. These sound and look wonderful! I love Latin American food, but know very little about it. So the more I learn, the better. Thank you for posting this!

  4. This looks absolutely wonderful. You've done an amazing job with these!

  5. Oh, your parcels are so cute, I can't believe it! I've never heard of this before so thanks so much for sharing your experiences with us; I can only imagine how delicious it was. Your photos are so incredible and it's always a joy to come here and discover your posts.

  6. Esto es sencillamente maravilloso, me encantaría probarlosiempre lo he visto en foto, esperando a ser cocinado a que me arriesgue con un plato como éste.
    Un beso.

  7. Those look excellent! I definitely want to try these little darlings out.

  8. Tus fotografias son excelente marco para tus deliciosas recetas. FELICIDADES POR EL BLOG!

    Saludos de una chilanga de corazon que vive en una ciudad en la que siempre he sido "la chilanga"


  9. I've never had this before, sounds really interesting.

  10. Excellent photos - this recipe looks really delicous.

  11. Que receta más estraña para mi, aunque me encantan las recetas así, y unas fotos estupendas
    Un beso

  12. This is truly a labor of love! It's such a wonderful recipe!

  13. Pity las humitas son una de las cosas mas deliciosas que conozco, Pity, y te quedaron espectaculares, las fotos preciosas, besoos

  14. Gosh, this is new to me.
    Excellent recipe, lovely colours and beautiful pictures.
    Lovely work.
    Have a great Christmas x

  15. Pity, I've never seen humitas before. Looks fabulous!! I actually just posted a recipe on tamales. I'll have to try this soon!

  16. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.