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|Maize, maize husk|
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Humita is a Native American dish from pre-Hispanic times, and a traditional food in Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Ecuador and Peru. It consists of masa harina and corn, slowly steamed or boiled in a pot of water. In Brazil it is known as pamonha.
Humitas are common in various countries in Latin America, although their origin is unclear. The noun "humita" derives from the word humint'a in Quechua, the most widely spoken indigenous language of the Andes, spoken in Ecuador, southern Colombia, the highlands of Peru and Bolivia, and northwestern Argentina. In Venezuela, they are known as hallaquitas, in Chile and Peru as humitas, in Bolivia as humintas.
In Argentina, humitas are prepared with fresh corn, sautéed onions and some spices, depending on the region or taste. The dough is wrapped in corn husks and boiled. It is also common to add some diced cheese to the dough, typically goat cheese.
Humitas in Chile are prepared with fresh corn, onion, basil, and butter or lard. They are wrapped in corn husks and baked or boiled. They may contain ají verde (green chili pepper). The humitas are kept together during cooking with thread or twine.
As in Chile, in Ecuador humitas are prepared with fresh ground corn with onions, eggs and spices that vary from region to region, and also by each family's tradition. The dough is wrapped in a corn husk, but is steamed rather than baked or boiled. Ecuadorian humitas may also contain cheese. This dish is so traditional in Ecuador that they have developed special pots just for cooking humitas. Ecuadorian humitas can be salty or sweet.
In Peru and Bolivia
In Peru, mainly in the central Andes region, humitas are prepared with fresh corn combined with lard and salt and queso fresco for a savory dish or with fresh corn with lard, sugar, cinnamon and raisins for a sweet dish. Savory humitas may also be prepared with anise.These are typically very rare in other parts of South America.
These humitas are prepared with corn wrapped in corn husks and can be cooked in boiling water, placed in a pachamanca oven, or steamed. They can be wrapped in several ways.
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