If you haven’t tried making this Chicha de jora recipe at home you’re missing out big time. It’s easy, healthy and cheap to make and also quite fizzy :-).
Chicha de jora is a fermented drink native to Peru, particularly widespread in Peru, Bolivia and Ecuador. It has different varieties depending on the region but its preparation consists mainly of the “jora”, that is, malted corn. It is made since the pre-Inca era being a sacred drink used in ceremonial acts and festivals of all pre-Hispanic cultures of the central Andean area.
Technically it’s like kind of a craft beer made of corn, because its preparation requires malted grain, to later be fermented, the alcohol level varies according to the region and the “chichero” (popular name given to the people that brew it).
History of Chicha de jora
In the time of the Incas, according to tradition, during the Tupac Yupanqui mandate the rains deteriorated the silos where corn was stored so that the grains were fermented and derived in corn malt. To save rotten corn, this malt was ordered to be distributed in the form of mote (corn cooked in water), but eventually ended up being discarded. But a villager who was scouring the garbage because of hunger, consumed malt and ended up in intoxication.
It was the favorite drink of the inca nobility in addition to being used in ceremonial rituals. During the Inti Raymi the inca toast with chicha de jora in honor of The Sun. it was also customary to leave a bowl of this drink in the grave of a deceased relative or offer it as payment to Pachamama or Tinka for a good harvest.
Today chicha de jora is consumed mainly in rural areas of the North and the sierra of Peru, even cities such as Lambayeque or Cajamarca still maintain their traditional production based on giant white corn that only grow in the sierra of the region. The presentation of the drink to the diners is made in ornamental vessels made of painted and carved dried pumpkins called “potos ” or” cojuditos ” according to their size respectively.
The Chicha de jora Recipe
To prepare the chicha de jora first you need to get the flour of jora. This is a procedure that takes about a month and resembles the lunar phases, as each stage takes about seven days. Once the corn has been obtained, which can be yellow or white, we proceed to soak it and bring it to a kind of bed made with leaves of “jorapanka”. This is a plant that is found in the deepest parts of the ravines and whose taste is absorbed by the seeds of the corn.
The corn grain is allowed to stand for about seven days, covered with leaves. This procedure helps the grain germinate, germinated corn is taken to dry under the sun, for about a week; once dry, it is ground and the flour of jora is obtained. With this flour is made the preparation of the drink as a traditional laundry and to acquire its special flavor is cooked on wood. First all kinds of sweet herbs are boiled, while the flour is soaked in cold water, once the essence of the herbs is obtained they are removed from the pot and the flour is poured. It should be allowed to boil stirring constantly so that the flour does not accumulate at the base of the pot, if the corn was not sweet enough is included in the panela preparation.
Once the drink is cooked, the chichado procedure begins. With the help of a sieve, the chicha is drained into a vessel that was originally made of Clay, whose base was buried. The number of days of rest will depend on the degree of fermentation required, for the festivities is allowed to ripen from three to seven days.
You can also make another very famous drink using purple corn called chicha morada, try it and I’m sure you’ll love it :-).