Cachapas are a part of traditional Venezuelan cuisine. Like arepas it is a popular "outdoors" food, particularly in roadside stands. They can be pancakes or tamales of fresh corn dough, the latter (cachapa de hoja) are wrapped in banana leaves and boiled. The most common ones are made with fresh corn that is ground and then mixed into a thick batter and cook on a budare like pancakes; the cachapa is slightly thicker and lumpier because of the pieces from corn kernels. It can be served with many toppings, but traditionally with butter or margarine and any variety of white cheese (queso blanco) on top. They can be prepared as an appetizer or a full breakfast, depending on the size. Cachapas can be very elaborate, some including different kinds of cheese, milky cream, or jam.

Venezuelan Corn Cakes: Cachapas Recipe

  • 10 ears of corn
  • 2 tablespoons sugar (avoid if the corn is too sweet)
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • Pinch salt
  • Corn oil, for sauteing
  • 1/4 lb fresh cheese

Remove kernels form husk of corn using a sharp knife. Pureé in a blender. Mix in the sugar, milk, and salt. Heat griddle to medium heat, lightly coat with corn oil. Spoon mixture onto hot griddle to form "pancakes" of any desired size. Cook for 2 minutes on each side, and fold with a large piece of cheese on the inside.

Cachapas are eaten with "Queso de mano" (Hand Cheese), a soft, mozzarella-like cheese, and also with fried pork chicharrón on the side.

In Costa Rica, cachapas are sweeter and known as Chorreadas.

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