Changua is a popular egg dish in Colombian cuisine that is often served for breakfast. In its basic form, it is a milk and egg soup that is typically served with bread. In many cases, when served at restaurants, changua includes a variety of other ingredients, particularly potatoes.
In Colombia, changua is one of the most popular breakfast dishes. As it is quick-cooking and made from very simple, easy to find ingredients, it is considered a healthy and filling breakfast for young children and adults alike. The dish is believed to have originated in Cundinamarca Department, located in the center of the Republic of Colombia. Cundinamarca is well-known for its dairy farms, and cow’s milk is available in abundance in this region. It is also popular in the other mountain regions, as mornings are typically cold in these areas.
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In its most basic form, changua is made from equal parts water and milk. The soup can be made in two different ways: either the milk and water can be placed in a pot and brought to a boil together, or the water is used to cook the food and the milk is added just before serving. Once the liquid is boiling, a whole egg is cracked and cooked in the liquid. It is commonly topped with sliced green onions and chopped cilantro or parsley.
Changua is often served with stale or toasted bread. The bread can be eaten on the side and used to soak up the creamy broth. Traditionally, however, the bread is placed in the bottom of the soup bowl and the changua is poured over top. In many households, the dish is a popular way to use up stale bread, as the broth helps to soften it.
This egg dish is also often served with arepas, a popular side dish in Colombian cuisine. A corn-meal-based dough is mixed and shaped into flat, round discs, and then grilled, baked, or fried. When served with changua, the arepas are typically torn up and placed in the bottom of the serving bowl, and the soup is poured over the top.
While changua is often considered a rustic dish, it is popular in several high-end restaurants specializing in Colombian cuisine. The basic components of the dish — milk, egg, and water — are typically the same, although other ingredients are added for a more complex flavor. Garlic is a popular addition, as is coriander, the seeds of the cilantro plant. To make the soup even more filling, diced potatoes are often fried in butter before the other liquids are added, helping to thicken the soup and provide additional flavor.