Culinary experiences in Quito have increased just in the last months. Ecuadorian chocolate is particularly featured in many cafés and restaurants, since it has gained world status as a premium export product.
Thus, it is not surprising that Galería Café, featured in our last blog post, has also implemented a novel chocolate experience at their establishment in the old town. Chef Francisco Larco has combined two traditional foods, grandma’s style hot chocolate and “máchica” to create “chapolate“, basically thick hot chocolate mixed with toasted barley.
First, you place equal parts of water and milk in a clay pot and add orange peels, cinnamon, and a pinch of salt. You let it simmer while you start to toast the barley grains over a clay plate or “tiesto“. Once the mixture turns brownish, you place it on a stone grinder and start pounding away to produce the máchica or flour mixture.
We check out the milk and add the chocolate, in this case 70% cacao Pacari chocolate chips. We stir the beverage constantly using a wooden spoon or mixer until the chips melt completely to a smoothie-like consistency.
Finally, we add the máchica to our hot chocolate to get what we call “chapo”, which is a thick blend of flour and water. So, the combination is what we call “chapolate”. We can add as much máchica as we like, depending on how thick we want our delicious and nutritious beverage. Stir well and enjoy!