The word cereal is derived from ceres, the Roman Goddess of grain. The common cereal crops are rice, wheat, corn, oats and rye. The term cereal is not limited to these but also flours, meals, breads and alimentary pastes or pasta. Cereal science is a study concerned with all technical aspects of cereal. It is the study the nature of the cereals and the changes that occurs naturally and as a result of handling and processing.

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Chicha de jora: beverage made from corn

Chicha literally juice is a highly esteemed drink among South American Indians. It is a alcoholic drink particularly consumed in the Andes, where brewing started with the Incas. Chicha can be prepared from many seeds, roots or fruits such as quinoa, peanuts, grapes, oca and the berries of the mulli tree.

Chicha de jora, made from corn, is without a doubt the favorite of the Indians. It played an important role in the life of the Incas, not only as a source of nourishments but also in ritual and religious practices.

Virgin women, in the tradition of modern Catholic nuns and the vestal virgins of ancient Rome, lived next to the temples where they brewed chicha and served it to the sun in a gold cup every morning, as well as to the priests.

The women made the chicha by chewing the corn and spitting it into containers. The ptyalin enzymes in the saliva broke down the corn starches into fermentable sugars. It was believed that older women’s saliva made for a tastier and more potent brew.

 The color of chicha varies depending on the type of corn which from it is made, ranging from pale yellow to burgundy red. When made from yellow sweet maize, it has a pale straw color and milky appearance.
Chicha de jora: beverage made from corn
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