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Bolivian Chairo

What is it?

The chairo is a dish that gathers different typical products from the Andes region. It is a soup (chairo means soup) made of meat and vegetables, out of which potato, chuño (potato flour) and dry and salty lamb meat (chalona) are the basic ingredients. With the base of these ingredients, they add different other vegetables to give it more calories, as the people in the rural areas, used to take this when they went to work, for their meals, and sometimes they had to walk hours away from their homes. This way, this soup would be in good conditions and be good nourishment for them.

It is believed that this dish is of collan origen (Indians who live in the Andes region), and though they make this dish in the Peruvian part of the Andes, the best and tastier is the chairo from the Bolivian part.

Chairo used to be a very important part of the Bolivian’s diet, and is so up to these days. They are served in clay dishes and taste better, so they say, if you eat them with wood spoons, and serve it very hot!

Chairo Recipe


2 liters water
1 tablespoon salt
3 cups of potatoes, cut into pieces
2 cups of combined: green beans, carrots (cut into slices), lima beans
1 cup cooked corn grains
1 cup onion cut into slices
1 cup of chuño, soaked for ten hours at least (potato flour)
¼ kilo con beef, cut into pieces
¼ kilo of dry and salted lamb meat (chalona) cut into pieces and soaked for about a half hour before using it.
Cayenne pepper, oregano, black pepper
2 tablespoons of oil


Put the meats in the sauce pan to boil, and let them boil for an hour.
In a frying pan, fry all the other ingredients, carrots, beans, onion, and tastes, with the oil . Put this into the boiling water and meat preparation. Add the potatoes and cook until they are done, don’t let them too long, you want them just tender.
Before serving, add some chopped parsley into the pan.
In the dishes you can add some grated cheese also.
Enjoy it!
 - South American Foods and Desserts



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