Place of origin
|Figleaf gourd, pumpkin, beans and grains, salt cod, milk|
The components of Fanesca and its method of preparation vary regionally, or even from one family to another. It is typically prepared and served only in the week before Easter (Holy Week). It is a rich soup, with the primary ingredients being figleaf gourd (sambo), pumpkin (zapallo), and twelve different kinds of beans and grains including chochos (lupines), habas (fava beans), lentils, peas, corn and others, together with bacalao (salt cod) cooked in milk, due to the Catholic religious prohibition against red meat during Holy Week. It is also generally garnished with hard boiled eggs, fried plantains, herbs, parsley, and sometimes empanadas.
Fanesca is usually consumed at midday, which is generally the principal meal of the day within Ecuadorian culture. The making and eating of fanesca is considered a social or family activity.