I remember my first taste of papas chorreadas in Bogotá. It was in the school cafeteria where the teachers and staff could get a lovely Colombian lunch—almuerzo executivo—for only a small amount of money. The food was always good and fresh, just as good as some of the local restaurants that I liked to frequent. The meat was a roast chicken served with the papas, and the meal was delicious.
Somehow I lost track of my instructions for making this dish, and then a couple days ago I opened my pamphlet from Casa Vieja, a good restaurant in downtown Bogotá that serves the traditional Colombian favorites, platos tipicos. The instructions for making the dish are in the pamphlet, albeat without any measurements. So I also consulted my copy of the American Women’s Club cookbook, Bogotá Bounty, which gave me an idea of proportions.
These are a yummy comfort food that go great as a side for grilled chicken or steak.
PAPAS CHORREADAS (COLOMBIA)
Adapted from Recetas de Casa Vieja: Our Native Cooking, by Julia Mora de Duran.
6 quart pot
8 medium red potatoes, one strip peeled from around the middle of the potato
2 scallions, cut into 2 inch pieces
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 tomatoes, chopped
2 medium onions, thin sliced
1 cup milk
1/2 lb white cheese, such as quesadilla cheese, fresh grated (not pre-grated)
1/2 teaspoon salt
2-3 grinds fresh black pepper
1 green onion, thin sliced (optional)
chives, chopped (optional)
1. Put peeled potatoes and the scallions into the pot and add just enough water to cover. Bring to a boil and cook for 30 minutes or until tender. Drain.
***While potatoes are cooking***
2. Add olive to heated skillet. Saute onions and tomatoes until they are tender.
3. Add the milk, cheese, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine. Turn down the heat and let the sauce thicken.
4. To serve, place drained potatoes on a large serving platter in a single layer. Pour sauce over top, and make sure each potato has some sauce on it. Garnish with sliced green onions or chopped chives.
Opinions differ on peeling the potatoes. Some people advocate completely peeling the potatoes, while others say you should only peel one strip around the middle of the potato. I prefer the extra color with having part of the potato skin intact, but they are tasty either way!
The cheese must be fresh grated because the anticaking agents added to packaged grated cheeses that prevent it from the sticking together also prevent the cheese from melding with the milk to make a sauce.