"Somehow you'll escape
all the waiting and staying.
You'll find the bright places
where the Boom Bands are playing."
- Dr. Seuss, Oh, the Places You'll Go!

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Chicharon party…..that’s a “chunks of bacon” party to you.

            The party was part of a low key Sunday in site, but I suspect that it’s going to be one of those simple days that sticks in my memory.
 We went up to an annex of my town called Apachico to have lunch with some relative. Though I’ll be honest, I have no idea how they are actually related to me. Anyway, an older Tio in my family decided it was time to kill his pig and wanted the whole family to come partake in chicharon. As the title tells you, that means little chunks of pork fried in their own fat…….. or as I like to think of it – YUM. But I’ll get back to that.  When we first got up to the house lunch wasn’t quite ready so I went walking with a group of kids down to the river. The weather was BEAUTIFUL so we played on the river bank and searched for rocks that made different colored marks to draw with. Then we sat in the shade to eat the oranges someone had brought from their garden. Tasty!
 When we got back to Tio’s house it was time to eat. Lunch was a plate of fried pork bits on a pile of camote, which is something in the corn family. I had the distinct pleasure of sitting next to a delightful little old Quechua lady during lunch. She spoke very little Spanish but there was another woman on her other side who spoke both Spanish and Quechua, so the three of us got a long fine. Doña Mary won my affections by realizing that I might like to know what parts of the pig I happened to have on my plate……turns out tripe works in three languages so long as you change the accent a little. When Doña Mary finished her lunch she showed me how to use the pot full of onion, herbs and pig’s blood (that had been at her feet for all of lunch) to stuff pig intestines and make “relleno” or blood sausage. Strangely enough I wasn’t as grossed out as some part of my brain seems to think I should be. She was a super interesting lady and the fact that she was up to her elbows in pig’s blood didn’t change that. 

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