Sumpthin Good From Momostenango, Guatemala – Pache de Papa

“Pache de Papa”


Choli Zárate & Ani Zárate

Ingredients – 5 lbs. of potatoes [or yucca]; and ingredients for the recado [sauce], namely: 2 lbs. of chicken, 2 ounces of ajon jali (sesame), 2 ounces of pepitória (pepita de ayote = peeled pumpkin seeds), 2 chiles pasas, 1 chile huaque (red dry chile pepper – to give additional color to the recado); 1 pound of tomatoes, 1 large chile pimiento or 2 small ones; 4 cloves of garlic; salt; 1 cup of oil; chile chocolate verde (for decoration); and optional consomé or chicken seasoning. See photo of some of the ingredients, below:


1. Boil chicken in ½ liter of water for 10 minutes with salt to taste;

2. Remove the chicken leaving the broth in the pot;

3. Place sliced peeled potatoes into the chicken water with the mashed garlic and cook until soft;

4. Roast the tomatoes with a little of the chile huaque and chile pasa separately for 1 minute. Then cook with 2 cups of water and add the chile pimiento;

5. Brown the sesame seeds in a frying pan on a low flame stirring constantly so as not to burn them for 10 minutes;

6. Brown the pepitoria on a low flame;

7. Liquify from 4 to 6 tomatoes;

8. Remove potatoes from pot (pour off chicken water if in excess) and mash the potatoes and garlic in a large pan ;

9. Add the recado (liquefied tomatoes and spices) to the potatoes and mix well with the hands or a paleta and add the consomé and optional salt;

10. Cut chicken into small strips with bone;

11. Prepare maxán leaves for wrapping;

12. Place the potato and recado mixture in a maxán leaf, and add the chicken and the decoration pepper;

13. Fold the leaf and place in a pot with straw and 3 cups of water;

14. Cook for 1 hour and allow to cool slightly. Then unwrap for consumption

15. Consume and wash down with a cup of caliente de frutas.