Fanesca, the Ecuadorian Lenten Soup

There are certain traditional dishes that we would never serve on a regular Tuesday night because they are very labor-intensive. Yet we still pull out all the stops and make them for a holiday because it's tradition, and because the memories of making such a dish are as precious as the delight in eating them. That's why home cooks in Ecuador make fanesca during Lent, and especially during Holy Week. There are 12 ingredients to represent the 12 apostles, consisting of chickpeas, lentils, corn, rice, and several kinds of beans, plus it is served with a variety of toppings. So many ingredients results in a lot of soup, so everyone eats. And in the US, Ecuadorian cooks use fanesca for church gatherings and fundraisers. 

The soup itself is even older than Christianity in Ecuador, and was once used to thank a goddess for a good spring harvest. It was repurposed for Lent after South America was converted to Christianity. Read about the tradition of fanesca and how it continues in the United States and find the recipe for fanesca here. -via Nag on the Lake ā€‹

(Image Credit: Marioaer

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