Champurrado (CC photo by burrodeoaxaca courtesy of Flickr)
Atole is a hot beverage native toand Central America originating before the pre-Hispanic era. Traditionally, atole is made from nixtamalized maize dough, which is sold by the kilo and available in tortilla shops and markets throughout . The nixtamalization process involves soaking and cooking in limewater, then hulling, washing, and grinding it into dough (fresh masa). This process not only makes the easier to grind but also more nutritional and flavorful. When it’s dried and powdered, it’s called masa harina. Depending on availability in your area, you can use either masa or masa harina to prepare atole. Don’t substitute regular cornmeal or flour because the used undergoes a different process, resulting in a very different flavor.
Traditionally, atole is sweetened by adding piloncillo, which is an unrefined sugar with a high molasses content that’s pressed into cones. If you can’t get piloncillo in your area, you can substitute 1 1/2 cups dark brown sugar and a few teaspoons of molasses.
What was originally a combination of sweetenedflour and hot water has evolved into a wide variety of concoctions: vanilla, cinnamon, chocolate (Champurrado), strawberry, guava, pineapple, blackberry, plum, mango, tejocote (kind of like a little apple), coconut, pecan, almond, and peanut.
We cannot fail to mention here that the custom inis to accompany your steaming hot atole with a or two. And, of course, it all tastes even better when enjoyed in the company of friends and family. We recommend you try the Champurrado (chocolate atole) first – luscious, rich, and creamy!
Posted by Magdiel