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POSTCARDS OF BOYACÁ

A selection of postcards gifted to me by La Colegiatura Colombiana as part of their collaboration 'Native Ovens' (Fogones Nativos) inspires in me much cultural reflection. Here I present a translation.

A hauntingly beautiful woman in yellow-olive blanket cradling hens

Corn has been an important feature in the religious offerings of many communities in Colombia both preceding and following the Spanish Conquest. In the celebrations of San Isidore the farm laborer, different colored pulses are consumed with the aim of protecting and blessing the harvest.  


The abundance of the market place.

Each of the 123 municipalities of Boyacá has its own market place. Typical dishes of the region include 'mute', 'el cuchuco con espinazo de cerdo', 'el caldo de costilla' and 'caldo de cordero'. You can also buy traditional cooking pots such as the 'chorote de barro'. 


Locals trading in the Calle Caliente, Villa de Leyva

The beer 'chicha' was discretely produced after the 1948 prohibition. In Villa de Leyva, in the 'Calle de Caliente', there have been 'chicherías' (ale houses) since 1800.


Boys from the hamlet of Runta near Tunja, Boyacá

Runta is a hamlet in Tunja where pork is served in pop-up restaurants on Thursdays in the houses of its residents. They offer longaniza sausages, chicharrón 'totiado', and 'cuchuco con espinazo'. All of this is served with ají and vast quantities of locally crafted beer. 


Boyacá women preparing pulses for 'Cocido Madrileño'

The local recipe for 'Cocido Madrileño' was brought by Diego Granado from Burgos, España in 1599 where it was adapted in its new home, Colombia. A stew of chickpeas, lamb, ham, Sutamarchán sausage, cloves, olive oil and vegetables, it continues to warm the bodies of many.  


The Bridge of Boyacá - important in the battle for independence from Spain

'From Boyacá in the fields

came genius of the glory

With each lance a hero

crowned undefeated.


Soldiers without breastplates

Who won the victory

Their manly breath

was their serving shield.'

-Fifth stanza of the hymn of Colombia.



♥ A special thank you to Sandra Pimienta at La Colegiatura Colombia and the faculty of Otro Sabor for the gift of these postcards.