6 January 2010
Walking around the local market in Orce village on a wintry Tuesday morning you can on occasion catch the faint smell of churros, torrefacto coffee and taza chocolate. Particularly welcoming aromas in the winter as you know that something hot to drink or eat is only a few moments away should you choose.
Orce market like most others in the region is packed with fruit and veg stalls, cured fish, sweets, crafts and there is of course always the "churros man" skillfully swirling freshly mixed batter into the deep fat fryer from his traditional churrera. Batter or pancake mix is basically what churros are - its the way they are made and cooked that makes the difference.
The churrera is the piece of quite simple kit that is made from metal and has a wooden plunger, the mixture is placed inside then using the plunger forced out of a nozzle directly into hot oil in a long swirl. A few minutes later the churros are ready, snipped into six inch lengths then handed to you in paper. Sugar is always on offer and they do make quite a breakfast! Churreras are also available in domestic size so you can make your own at home.
At coffee bars there also sometimes churros being made near the front door, this is where the coffee bar comes into its own as if you order churros here you can also order chocolate a la taza that thick Spanish drinking chocolate in which you dip your churros into for a chocoholics dream.
Ingredients: (Makes one large plate full)
Olive Oil for frying
1 cup water
1/2 cup butter
pinch of salt
1 cup plain flour
How to prepare:
1. Place water, butter and salt into a large saucepan and heat until it just begins to bubble.
2. Reduce the heat and add the flour stirring continuously until you get a smooth mixture.
3. Add the eggs (already beaten) to the pan and continue to stir until the mixture resembles a smooth, thick batter.
4. Heat the olive oil in a large deep frying pan and when it is hot, just before smoking, you are ready to cook the churros.
5. Spoon the mixture into your churro maker and squeeze about 3 strips at a time into the hot oil. Cook for 2 minutes on each side until golden brown drain on kitchen paper and repeat for the next batch.
6. Churros are traditionally eaten with a sprinkling of sugar or dipped in the ultimate hot chocolate, the thick chocolate a la taza.