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Churro facts for kids

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Churro
Churros
Churros
Alternative names Tejeringos
Type Fried dough
Course Breakfast, lunch, dinner, snack
Serving temperature Hot
Main ingredients Flour

Churros, sometimes called Spanish doughnuts, are fried-dough pastry-based snacks, sometimes made from potato dough, that originated in Portugal. They are popular in Latin America, France, Portugal, the United States, and Spanish-speaking Caribbean islands. There are two types of churros in Spain. One is long and fat (porra), and the other, extra popular in Madrid, is thin and has knots. They are both eaten for breakfast or as a treat with chocolate or sugar.

History

The origin of churros is unclear. One theory suggests they were brought to Europe from China by the Portuguese. The Portuguese sailed for the Orient and, as they returned from Ming Dynasty China to Portugal, they brought along with them new culinary techniques. The new pastry soon crossed the border into Spain, where it was modified to have the dough extruded through a star-shaped die rather than pulled.

Another theory is that the churro was made by Spanish shepherds, to substitute for fresh bakery goods. Churro paste was easy to make and fry in an open fire in the mountains, where shepherds spend most of their time.

Preparation

Churros are fried until they become crunchy, and may be sprinkled with sugar. The surface of a churro is ridged due to having been piped from a churrera, a syringe-like tool with a star-shaped nozzle. Churros are generally prisms in shape, and may be straight, curled or spirally twisted.

Like pretzels, churros are sold by street vendors, who may fry them freshly on the street stand and sell them hot. In Spain and much of Latin America, churros are available in cafes for breakfast, although they may be eaten throughout the day as a snack. Specialized churrerĂ­as can be found in the form of a shop or a trailer during the holiday period. Churros in American theme parks and street fairs are most often rolled in cinnamon sugar or other flavored sugars.

The dough is a mixture of flour, water and salt. Some versions are made of potato dough.

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