Sunday, October 30, 2011

Sunday Soups: Ajiaco

My Colombian friends taught me how to make this traditional dish.  It's a potato soup with lots of fixings- topped with shredded chicken, avocado, capers, half-and-half and, usually, half an ear of corn.  I went to three grocery stores and no one had corn-on-the-cob.  I think cooking the corn in the potatoes give the soup a particular flavor, but I had my mind set on ajiaco, so we did without this time.  The other ingredient that gives the soup a unique flavor is an herb called guascas.  There's no English translation- guascas is guascas.  I ordered it online


4 quarts of water
1 pound papas criollas (yellow potatoes; I use Yukon Gold instead), peeled and sliced
2 pounds "fine" or "smooth" potatoes (I use red/new potatoes), peeled and sliced
1 1/2 pounds "herd" potatoes (I use Russet), peeled and sliced
3 pounds of chicken breast, on the bone
4 corn cobs, shucked and cut into 3 pieces
3 scallions
8 garlic cloves (I used 5 big ones), minced
1 cup guascas
salt and pepper to taste
avocados, diced or sliced
mild cheese (like mozzarella), cubed

1. Cook the chicken, potatoes, scalllions, salt and pepper in water for one hour. The pototoes should be dissolving, and the chicken should be tender.

2. Take the chicken and scallions out, and add the corn and guascas.  Simmer until the potatoes become creamy.  (We got impatient and had some before all the potatoes had dissolved and it was still good.)

3.  Shred the chicken on top of the soup.  (Discard the scallions.)  Serve with cilantro, avocado, capers, half-and-half, and cheese.
Perfect for a cold night. 

Have a great week!


Tortla Dot said...

Great soup with wonderful memories and a taste of foreign adventure!

Cristina Gonzalez Iregui said...

It's so good that you managed to find a substitute for nearly everything!