We all know and love the delicious dessert that usually comes after a Mexican meal: churros. The deep-fried treat comes in different forms with unique flavors and tastes, including chocolate or caramel.
But we have to ask – where did they come from? And how did they get so popular? Let’s take a look at the history of churros.
The History of Churros
Most people believe that the churro originated in Spain, but this dessert has a messy past. There are two theories on where it came from.
The first claim is that it was founded in China from a pastry called youtiao, which is fried in oil. However, this salty pastry did not pair with chocolate or cinnamon. Portuguese explorers brought youtiao back, and it evolved into the star-shaped dessert that we know today. From there, it gained popularity throughout Spain.
The second theory is that it was invented by nomadic Spanish shepherds as a substitute for bread, as they did not have access to fresh food. The shepherds used flour, water and oil to create the treat. The name was inspired by the horns of the Churra sheep, and it was from here that it became popular.
Spreading Around the World
Though we don’t know it’s beginning, what we definitely know is that churros were introduced to South America during the Spanish Inquisition in the 1500s; from there, it spread like wildfire. This was also when Spaniards returned to Europe with cacao.
They experimented and sweetened the cacao using sugar cane. This created hot chocolate, something that is still paired with churros to this day. Café con leche and churros is another popular breakfast item.
Funny enough, Disneyland is also credited for the churros’ growing popularity, as the theme park has been selling the delicious treat since the 1980s. Today, the churro can be found in several different flavors.
No matter their history, making churros is a simple technique. Simply mix flour, water and salt before frying the batter until it is crunchy. The distinct star-shape comes from being piped from a churrera, a syringe-like utensil that features that unique shape. Churros can either be straight or spiral-shaped.
The fun part is deciding what to pair the churro with. They can come with cinnamon, chocolate or caramel. Some even have cheese or fruit!
At Benny’s Tacos, our churros are filled with Bavarian cream. To get your fill, stop by Benny’s Tacos today.