Welcome to the Paulina Cocina community! On this occasion we want to invite you with a recipe that comes from Ecuador: Yapingacho. In simple words, it is a omelet made with mashed potatoeswhich is traditionally served with other ingredients such as chorizo, fried egg and peanut sauce.

To make this recipe, first we are going to learn a little more about its origin, its ingredients, the meaning of its name, the accompaniments of this dish and finally we will arrive at the recipe for Potato Yapingachoto feel a little of that typical flavor of Ecuadorian gastronomy.

About Yapingacho

He Yapingacho It is a traditional dish of Ecuadorian gastronomy, specifically from the Sierra region and is also known by the name llapingacho. This dish consists of thick potato-based tortillasgenerally filled with cheese and other ingredients, which are browned in oil until obtaining a crispy texture on the outside and soft on the inside.

At the heart of Ecuadorian gastronomy, Yapingacho is defined as an emblematic dish that has conquered palates throughout the country. This delicacy is not only a culinary delicacy, but also a symbol of tradition and unity at the table.

The ingredients of potato Yapingacho

  • Potato base: Chola potatoes (pink skin) are used due to their high percentage of starch, which are cooked and crushed to form a dough that will serve as a base for the tortillas.
  • Cheese filling: One of the essential ingredients that gives Yapingacho its distinctive flavor is fresh cheese, which can be mozarella or a similar cheese.
  • Touch of annatto: Annatto is a typical spice of the region that is used to give color and a subtle flavor to the Yapingacho dough. This seasoning not only contributes to the vibrant and attractive appearance of the dish, but also adds a touch of earthy flavor that perfectly complements the other ingredients.
  • Tortilla shape: Yapingacho is commonly presented in the form of small, round, thick tortillas. These are assembled with your hands and then browned in oil, until they acquire a golden, crispy layer on the outside and a soft consistency on the inside.
  • Versatility in presentation: Although the traditional recipe focuses on potato tortillas filled with cheese, Yapingacho can be presented in various ways. Some variants include adding other ingredients such as chorizo, egg, avocado or meat, for a more complete dish.

What does the word llapingacho mean?

The word llapingacho It is a combination of Quechua and Spanish. “Lapp”in Quechua roughly translates as “ground” or “crushed,” and “gacho.” In Spanish it means bent or inclined downwards.

Therefore The word would refer to the process in which the potatoes, which are the main ingredient, are cooked, crushed and given the typical tortilla shape that characterizes this Ecuadorian dish.

So much Yapingacho as llapingachoare often used interchangeably to refer to the same dish in Ecuador, and both reflect the rich culinary tradition and mix of flavors that identify this recipe.

What is the origin of Yapingacho?

The origin of Yapingacho dates back to the indigenous roots of Ecuador, where potatoes were revered as a gift from the earth. Over time, this recipe has evolved, incorporating additional ingredients that have enriched and diversified it, but without losing its native essence.

Yapingacho is not only a delicious dish, but it also has important cultural significance in Ecuador. It is considered a symbol of the country’s agricultural wealth, since it uses the potato, a fundamental tuber in the Ecuadorian diet.

6 tips you need to know to make Ecuadorian llapingachos

  • Choice of potatoes: Choose potatoes that have a higher percentage of starch, as they have a creamier texture and a milder flavor.
  • Cooking the potatoes: Cook them with the peel so that they absorb less liquid, for a better result. Too much moisture can make tortillas difficult to handle and affect consistency.
  • Uniform mixing: The mixture of potato, cheese, onion, annatto and salt must be well integrated to ensure that each tortilla has an adequate balance of flavors. The dough should be firm but malleable.
  • Size and thickness of the tortillas: When forming tortillas it is important to maintain a uniform size to ensure even cooking. Tortillas should not be too thick, as they may not cook properly in the center; nor too fine, because they might not achieve the desired texture.
  • Hot oil and temperature control: The oil must be very hot before frying the tortillas. An oil at the proper temperature will ensure that the Potato Yapingachos they brown properly and develop their golden texture.
  • Careful handling: Handle the tortillas carefully when placing them in the hot oil and turning them during cooking. This will help them keep their shape and not fall apart. Use appropriate utensils to avoid burns and remember to drain them well before serving them.

8 Accompaniments for Yapingacho

  • Peanut sauce: A classic accompaniment for Yapingacho. The combination of the smooth, creamy texture of the sauce with the firmness of the tortillas creates a perfect balance of flavors. You can also use an alternative that is peanut and curry sauce, for a more intense flavor.
  • Avocado: Fresh slices of avocado provide a creamy texture and a fresh flavor that contrasts well with the crunchy consistency of the llapingachos.
  • Fresh salad: Some easy salads are a refreshing and contrasting addition that combines well with fried tortillas.
  • Aji sauce: For those who enjoy a spicy touch, an Ecuadorian chili sauce can add excitement to the dish. The mixture of chili peppers, cilantro, onion and lemon offers an explosion of flavor that elevates the gastronomic experience.
  • Fried eggs: Accompanying Yapingacho with fried eggs can be a delicious option. The creamy yolk mixes beautifully with the crispy tortillas, creating an irresistible combination.
  • Chorizo ​​or sausage: A little fried Ecuadorian chorizo ​​or longaniza adds a touch of smoky flavor and an extra dimension that completes the dish.
  • Cooked yucca: The firm texture and mild flavor of yuca complement well with llapingachos.

Follow me on Instagram (here)
And on YouTube I upload new videos every week (click here)

Ecuadorian Yapingacho Recipe

Portions: 4 portions

Preparation time: 45 minutes


  • Chola potatoes: 4 units
  • Fresh cheese: 200 g
  • White onion: 1 unit
  • Annatto (1 teaspoon)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Vegetable oil for frying
  • Accompaniments: chorizo, fried eggs, lettuce leaves, peanut sauce, salad, avocado and fried yuccas.

How to make Llapingachos step by step

  1. Cook the potatoes in their skins, boiled in lightly salted water, until tender, approximately 20-25 minutes. Then peel them and crush them.
  2. On the other hand, sauté the chopped onion in a pan with vegetable oil and add the tbsp. of annatto.
  3. In a bowl, mix the crushed potatoes, make balls and make a hole in the center and place the grated fresh cheese, the sautéed onion and annatto and season with salt and pepper to taste.
  4. Once the mashed potatoes are mixed with the sofrito and cheese, let the mixture cool in the refrigerator for about 10-15 minutes before forming the tortillas. Close and flatten to shape them into a tortilla.
  5. Heat a thin layer of oil in a frying pan over medium heat and brown the tortillas on both sides until crisp and golden. Place on absorbent paper to remove excess oil.
  6. Serve with the chosen accompaniments.
how to make yapingacho

Source: www.paulinacocina.net

Leave a Reply