FIBEGA Miami is pleased to announce another finalist in the category for Best Promotional Artistic work in Gastronomy Tourism for the book "Poytáva" (nourishment, in the native language guaraní) and also known as “Origin and Evolution of Paraguayan Cuisine " This book is the compilation of over 300 recipes over a 30-year span of research by the author, the ethnogastronomist, Graciela Martinez.
It studies the geography of the country alongside the culinary traditions of the Paraguayans. Telling the stories of the diverse traditions, the indigenous and the cultural melting pot that was created as a result of the European influences.
Throughout the research for Poytava, the author was able to locate old Paraguayan recipes, many of which were believed to be lost. Spending months traveling around the country visiting settlements of older native inhabitants allowing her to rediscover the legacy of the Paraguayan kitchen. Fortunately, she was able to recover them while speaking with the older generations, the only ones possible to pass these traditions to the new generations. It focuses around the history of the ancient diet and the ingredients once used up until the cultures mixed during the times of the conquistadors.
One of the many stories included is the roots of the “Sopa Paraguaya” a savory cheesy soufflé-type made with cornmeal, cheese and onions. They believed it was born from the original “ensopado español” a simple recipe of oven baked bread dipped in milk and topped with cheese.
This book is a compilation of the ancestors, the land, the farmers, and how they shared their ingredients, techniques and ancient culinary terms.