As the food festival season hits its peak, thousands of foodies like me will be enjoying a favourite festival treat—churros Enjoying churros only as a street food is not traditionally accurate.
Fresh churros are meant to be enjoyed for breakfast, dipped into thick hot chocolate or served with café con leche.
I’ve decided that I’ll be showing people at Bakewell festival of baking how make their own churros to enjoy at home with the family.
Like most food stories history is divided on how exactly churros came to us.
One story says that Portuguese sailors discovered a similar food in Northern China called “YouTiao” They brought back the technique that the Chinese used (fried flour stick), and changed it to make it a sweet dessert instead of a salty stick.
The Spanish heard of the new culinary treat from their neighbours, and put their own spin on it by passing the dough through a star-shaped tip which gives the churro its signature ridges.
Another story and my favourite! says that nomadic Spanish shepherds invented them. Whilst staying high in the mountains with the flocks and not access to pastry shops, the sweet toothed shepherds created churros, which were easy for them to cook in frying pans they took with them over an open fire. there is a breed of sheep called the “Navajo-Churro”, descended from the “Churra” sheep the horns of these sheep look similar to churros.
Whether Portuguese sailors, Spanish shepherds, or the Chinese get the credit for inventing the churro, it was during the 16th century, Spanish explorers brought Churros to every port of the new world. They quickly became local favourites and this may be why many countries claim Churros as their own.
When Hernando Cortez returned to Spain with the secret of Aztec chocolate, the custom of chocolate con churros began. Nowadays, piping hot chocolate sauce, prepared thick in the Spanish fashion, is still the favoured Churro accompaniment.
Straight or spiral-shaped, with or without a dusting of cinnamon and sugar, dipped in chocolate or straight out of a greasy paper bag on the street, churros, in all their creative variations, will continue to be one of my summertime favourites – and with a recipe in hand, maybe a breakfast hit in wintertime favourite, too.