By Vanette Colmenares
New York – The champorado dish is as old as ‘Mampor’ which is the Visayan adaptation of the Spanish language to mean being born in the ‘tiempo ni Mampor’ (time of Mampor).
Who is Mampor? Only God knows. Ever since I was born, the dish ‘champorado’ has already been there. It is of Mexican origin and the ‘atole’ was a mixture of chocolate and maize which was used as a sacred beverage during pre-Hispanic times.
Whether it’s part of breakfast or snack is a matter of choice. For sweeteners and creamers to make it more delectable is also a matter of one’s liking.
More often than not, when there is left over rice in the house, I either make it into fried rice for a meal, or chocolate porridge (the classy English name for champorado). All I need are three ingredients for the latter – rice, chocolate and sweetener which could be brown/white sugar or honey. I prefer the muscovado sugar from the Philippines.
Normally, in times of yore, Fiipinos would bring back the iconic dried mangoes, bottled bagoong (in my case muscovado sugar with its round clumps) or dried fish called daing. I remember my aunt’s story about a Filipino bringing back some dried fish and was stopped by a border security customs officer and demanded to open her bag. Upon lifting the top opening of her maleta, a foul smell emanated which appalled the officers.
“What’s that?,” asked the officer. The Filipino said, “it’s DAING (pronounced da-ing), sir.” Then the officer blurted, “What?! It’s DAING (pronounces it as dying)? It’s more like DEAD!”
The garnishing of every yummy champorado is always dried fish or DAING (da-ing). But at this point, I am not about to aromatize my apartment into smelling like a morgue. Instead, I open a can of anchovies which tastes like daing.
So this morning, I did just that. My nostalgic breakfast of champorado with Davao chocolate and muscovado sugar paired with anchovies. Busog.