Paul Acee's Ecuador

Hola Gente Festival


The Hola Gente Festival in Cuenca is today at the “El Antiguo Seminario”, located right next to the New Cathedral. It started at 10 A.M. and closes tonight at 10 P.M. Hola gente in English means hello people. The annual Orchid Show was held here last November also.

Hola Gente Festival

It’s in the courtyard of what used to be a monastery and admission is free. It’s sponsored by the city

hola gente festival hola gente festival

Lots of food and crafts are available for sale

hola gente festival hola gente festival

Fanesca in Cuenca

I was on a mission to have some Fanesca for the first time. Mission accomplished and it was delicious. Fanesca is only available in Ecuador and only during holy week leading up to Easter. You can get it to eat there or to go. I had mine there. You can have it as is, or spicy, spicy is available as a condiment.

This is from Wikipedia…

“Fanesca is a soup traditionally prepared and eaten by households and communities in Ecuador during Holy Week.

The components of fanesca and its method of preparation vary regionally, or even from one family to another. It is typically prepared and served only in the week before Easter (Holy Week). It is a rich soup, with the primary ingrediants being figleaf gourd (sambo), pumpkin (zapallo), and twelve different kinds of beans and grains including chochos (lupines), habas (fava beans), lentils, peas, corn and others, together with bacalao (salt cod) cooked in milk, due to the Catholic religious prohibition against red meat during Holy Week. It is also generally garnished with hard boiled eggs, fried plantains, herbs, parsley, and sometimes empanadas.

The twelve beans represent the twelve apostles of Jesus, and the bacalao is symbolic of Jesus himself.

Fanesca is usually consumed at midday, which is generally the principal meal of the day within Ecuadorian culture. The making and eating of fanesca is considered a social or family activity.”

hola gente festival hola gente festival

I suspect this is an annual event and I’ll be watching for it again next year.

Paul Acee

Author: Paul Acee

Retired and living in Ecuador.

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