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En pella, amasao, escaldón, …

In pella, amasao, escaldón,…

Canarian gofio is a food obtained from toasted and ground cereals, generally wheat or millet (corn). It was already consumed by the aboriginal Canary Islanders in pre-Hispanic times and is now considered a food that is a reference of Canary Island tradition and identity.

The consumption of gofio has spread from the Archipelago to the most diverse corners of the globe. It is present in Western Sahara, Cape Verde, Cuba, the United States, Nicaragua, Venezuela, Uruguay and the Dominican Republic, among others, due to the emigration of islanders during periods of famine. These emigrant Canary Islanders had gofio as an indispensable supply, since it could be preserved for a long time. In other countries, it may be called cofio, pinol, fororo or garfia.

In its beginnings, the Guanches, of Berber origin, called the current gofio, ahoren; in Lanzarote and Gran Canaria, they called it gofio, a term that has lasted until today. Traditionally, a manual stone mill was used for the production of gofio. Once the corn or wheat was toasted, basalt stones were used. Today, processing has become industrialized.

The toasting of the grain is what characterizes gofio with respect to other flours. The toasting of the cereal facilitates the digestion of the gofio and, depending on the type of cereal and the baking time, it will have a more or less yellow color and a more or less intense flavor. Gofio is a source of protein, fiber, minerals, carbohydrates and vitamins that strengthen the immune system and provide energy.


How do we eat gofio?

The consumption of this product can be done in multiple ways: the aborigines consumed it by kneading it with water and salt or with dried fruits and nuts. Nowadays, the way of consuming it has varied a lot and it is even used for sweet dishes. Normally gofio is added to milk, stew or broth (fish or meat), which is known as escaldón or escaldado gofio.

Another of the most popular gofio recipes is the “pella or ball” as an accompaniment to meals, or mixed with honey. But there are also more modern recipes such as sponge cakes, mousses, ice creams, etc.

In its traditional version, a sack was used to knead it. In the Canary Islands, the zurrón is a container made of tanned baifo or kid skin, which was also used as a small container for storing and transporting utensils.

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