Move over grape juice, there’s another purple drink adored by millions worldwide. Let me introduce to you, Peru’s chicha morada!
What is Chicha Morada
Chicha morada is a traditional Peruvian purple corn drink. Yes, that’s right, purple corn drink. While popular through out the year, it certainly is the beverage of choice during the summer months. This refreshing drink is made from Peruvian purple corn, otherwise known as maiz morado. This unique type of corn, which Peru produces over 55 varieties of, is grown in the Andes mountains.
Chicha morada is a staple of Peruvian culture. You will find it in every restaurant, bar and supermarket. Chicha morada can be drank at any meal and at any event. Their is no better representative drink of Peruvian cuisine than chicha morada.
Historical roots of chicha morada Peruana can be traced back long before the Inca Empire.
How to Make Chicha Morada
The process of making chicha morada involves boiling the purple corn or maize with other fruits, cinnamon, and cloves and adding sugar and lime juice. Since it’s a non-alcoholic drink it is equally enjoyed by both Peruvian children and adults alike.
Be forewarned though, the purple stains left from spills can be difficult to get out. However, the sweet and fruity flavor is worth the risk for many as it is served not only on special occasions but everyday meals as well.
- 1 lb. Dried Peruvian Purple Corn or Maiz Morado
- 20 Cups Water
- 3 Cinnamon Sticks
- 1 Pineapple Peel
- 2.5 oz Dried Cherries
- 2 tsp Whole Cloves
- 1/2 Cup Finely Peeled Apple
- 1 Cup Sugar
- 2 TBSP Key Lime Juice
- In a large pot, bring water, purple corn, cinnamon sticks, pineapple peel, dried cherries, and cloves to a boil. Boil for one hour. Set aside to cool.
- Strain the liquid into a pitcher, and reserve the corn cob, fruits and whole spices for another batch of chicha. Just add more water to the pot and repeat the process.
- Add the sugar to the liquid and stir until it is completely dissolved.
- Chill the chicha.
- Add diced fruit and lime juice to the chicha in the pitcher and stir.
- Add ice and serve.
Tip: To turn this into an adult beverage add some Peruvian pisco.
Chicha Morada Health Benefits
As the main ingredient for chicha morada is maiz morado, there are many health benefits that exist. The purple Peruvian corn is known for it’s powerful antioxidants and anti-inflammatory abilities. There are also promising studies in it helping prevent certain types of cancer and with anti-obesity capabilities.
Where to Buy Chicha Morada
Most chicha morada ingredients can be purchased at your local grocery store. However, the maiz morada might be harder to come by. You may find it at a Latin American supermarket if you are lucky. Or you can buy Peruvian purple corn online. If you can’t find Peruvian purple corn, we wouldn’t recommend using other corns as a substitute. No other corn can replicate the color, taste or aroma.
More Unique Peruvian Foods To Try
If you love purple foods read about El Mes Morado and the Peruvian dessert most closely associated with it.
And as if that wasn’t enough, don’t forget about another purple Peruvian dessert, mazamorra morada.
Peruvian cuisine has so much to offer, check out the 17 Best Peruvian Foods You Have To Try.
Our blog is all about sharing our love of Latin American foods & drinks. We will bring you articles and recipes of the very best Latin American & Spanish cuisine. Amigofoods was founded in 2003 and is the largest online grocery store offering a wide variety of hard to find freshly imported foods & drinks from all over Latin America and Spain.