What if you could make a delicious and nutritious meal in under ten minutes? That’s what the people of Colombia do with the calentado Colombiano.
The calentado is the perfect example of pure functionality. It began as a reheated breakfast made by leftovers and has transformed into a Colombian staple meal.
Preparing a calentado can be easy, tasty, and super fast. Read on to learn the calentado Colombiano’s staples, optional ingredients, and how to make your own.
Calentado Colombiano Staples
No matter where you find the calentado Colombiano, it will have some ingredients that are the same from place to place. Calentados are almost always prepared with white rice. Beans that have been simmering since the night before are mixed into the rice.
On top of the beans and the rice, calentado’s often have some type of meat. This is often the common Colombian chorizo, a type of pork that is rolled into a tube. Chorizo often comes with embedded spices to add a little bit extra kick to the meat.
A fried egg is almost always a staple in any Colombian calentado. Most Colombians don’t fry their eggs with the yolks cooked, but make their fried eggs sunny side up.
To top it all off, calentados come with an arepa. Arepas are a dough that is thickened out. Think of a thick, hard soft taco shell and you’re on the right track.
Calentado Colombiano Optionals
Calentados are pretty similar across much of Colombia, but there are a few variations in how they are prepared. Many Colombians like to add a type of vegetable or a sauce to their calentado.
Veggies like avocados, onions, or a salad can be prepared with your calentado. Sometimes these veggies will be mixed together in a sort of guacamole. Sour cream may also be used.
Some Colombians like to add a hint of sweet to their calentado by adding a sweet plantain or by drinking Chocolate Santafereño, a traditional hot chocolate with their meal. Likewise, Colombian coffee is always acceptable to go with your meal.
The majority of difference in calentados won’t be their ingredients, but how those ingredients are mixed together. Many calentados mix their rice, beans, and meat into one delicious combo. Sometimes a meat other than chorizo, like fish or beef, is used.
Colombians will sometimes substitute a fried egg for an egg scrambled with vegetables added in. All of this food can be placed on the arepa and eaten at once.
To make your own calentado, it’s best to start with the Colombian beans. We recommend letting them simmer overnight to add the maximum flavor. Once your beans are done, cook up white rice and your favorite meat dish. Mix the rice and beans together.
Fry or scramble an egg to go with the rice, beans, and meat. If you’re going to fry a plantain, now’s the time to do that as well.
The arepa can be the last part of the meal. They are often prepared using traditional Colombian cornmeal, but if you aren’t comfortable with that, a soft taco shell will suffice. You can eat it separately from your meal or mix all of your food in with it.
Your Next Meal
Now you know how to make the calentado Colombiano. To order imported Colombian foods visit our online store. Or visit our Colombian section and check out all sorts of articles on Colombian foods including the 17 Best Colombian Food Dishes You Should Try Right Now.
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