Unearthing the Colombian Bakery A Dive into Traditional Breads and Pastries
By TOI Team October 1, 2023 Update on : October 1, 2023
Very few cuisines in the world have a history as eclectic and fascinating as Colombian cuisine. Traditional Colombian breads and pastries that are popular worldwide are great examples of the rich history of Colombian bakery culture that features both uniquely Colombian and Latin American-inspired breads and pastries.
Let’s take a look into the diverse and influential culinary influences that have shaped Colombian cuisine with some popular Colombian breads and pastries to explore what makes Colombian bakery culture truly exceptional!
Exploring Colombian Bakery Culture with Popular Colombian Breads
As the Spanish are responsible for colonizing Colombia, there is quite a strong Spanish influence in Colombian cuisine. A look into the traditional ingredients used for Colombian cuisine will also highlight the cuisine is influenced by Indigenous and African cuisines as well.
During the Spanish colonial era, wheat and bread-making techniques were introduced, and within a few decades, bread became Colombian cuisine’s integral part. Let’s take the most popular Colombian bread Pan de Bono for example. It is made with cheese, egg, and cassava flour and has a signature soft and chewy texture achieved by such traditional bread-making techniques.
Colombian cuisine is mainly diverse because it is influenced by its geographical location. You can see vast differences in the lower part of the west coast from the northern part of Colombia. This is because these two sections lie within the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea respectively which heavily influences the different breads and pastries made in these two different regions. Similarly, there are major differences seen in Colombian bakery culture associated with the coastal region and the Andean region.
In the coastal regions, both savory and sweet bread items are popular. Deep-fried food items are very popular in the coastal areas and this is why Buñuelos is very famous in the coastal region as it deep-fried small dough balls that are mixed with cheese and other ingredients.
On the other hand, Arena, which is a thick cornmeal pancake, is popular in the high mountains of the Andes. This Colombian baked item is popular because the dish is usually eaten with meat, vegetables, and/or cheese. It is a heavy snack or bread item and a necessity in such a geographical location.
Colombia and its love for Guava
Guava is a popular tropical fruit in Colombia because of its unique sweetness and flavor profile. Thus, you can see many traditional Colombian breads and pastries made with this fruit. Some popular Colombian bread that usually feature this fruit are Roscon de guava, Roscon guava with cheese, Guava and cheese Quesitos, etc. A famous Colombian pastry made with guava is Chincharron which is a puff pastry made with guava filling. Cheese is even added to it to bring more depth to flavors and to add both sweet and savory flavor profiles.
Exploring Colombian Dessert culture with popular Colombian pastries
Pastries and other baked desserts are a vital part of the unique Colombian bakery culture where you can see the use of Arequipe. It is the Colombian name for Dulce de leche which is a thick, sticky sauce made with sugar, milk, salt, and baking soda. From Dulce de leche cookies to Tres leches pastries to Dulce de leche/Arequipe baskets to Alfajores, the types of delicious and traditional Colombian pastries to try are almost endless.
To delve deeper into the distinctive world of Colombian bakery culture, consider ordering these popular Colombian breads and pastries from Mecatos today!Read more: Unearthing the Colombian Bakery A Dive into Traditional Breads and Pastries