What Is Colada Morada?

A. Leverkuhn
A. Leverkuhn

Colada morada is a common beverage in the country of Ecuador that is made with a specific kind of flour, as well as different sorts of fruits. This food is most commonly served on an authentic Ecuadorian holiday. Because of its unusual preparation, this drink is sometimes referred to as an “oatmeal drink.”

Making colada morada over a particular season is part of a larger tradition for Ecuadorians. In October and early November, the drink is made along with a specific type of pastry called guagas de pan. On November 2, a day called the Dia de Difuntos, or Day of the Dead in English, Ecuadorians honor their deceased relatives. Some families include the making of colada morada and other foods and drinks in this custom, and these drinks are also commonly served in restaurants and cafes over the same season.

Experts note that the Ecuadorian holiday is not the same as other Latin American Day of the Dead holidays. The Ecuadorian nation has a particular culture that goes back to some indigenous traditions prior to the Spanish conquest. Colada morada is part of this tradition, and one that is still a vibrant part of the local culture.

In making colada morada, individuals will cook the various fruits and spices along with dark corn flour and water. Over time, the mix will become a bit thicker. Some cooks will then blend the dish to make it more smooth.

Some of the fruits that most commonly go into this purple drink include blackberries, pineapples, strawberries, and blueberries. Some other local fruits including something called “babaco,” and a range of Andean fruits may also be used. Cloves and cinnamon or other spices often form part of the mixture for this drink.

Many of those who make colada morada first produce a unique kind of tea. This can include citrus peel or zest, as well as lemongrass or other herbs. Another spice that may go into this drink is allspice.

Additional elements might help with the texture and flavor of colada morada. Some cooks use various kinds of sugars to make the drink even sweeter. Others may use cornstarch or other elements to enhance the texture of the drink. The social use of this drink during the holiday season is a particular part of Ecuadorian culture, and is something that many people from beyond the region like to try to reproduce in the autumn. Some cooks may make colada morada indoors over a stove where the cooking process is more controllable. Others will cook the drink over an open fire outdoors for a more informal and social experience.

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