Cocoa and coffee are typical products in the mountain communities of Manabi.
The entrepreneurs of that province have merged these products to make liquors, cosmetic brands, gourmet dishes, desserts, pieces of art, past coffee and chocolate.
In Calceta, on Friday, June 21, 2019, the Fair of Production and Entrepreneurship, Development and Equity was held. The microentrepreneurs showed their articles made with coffee and cocoa.
In addition, typical products such as toquilla straw hats, jams, eggnog, handicrafts and others were exhibited.
The artist José Oñate exhibited his paintings, which represent the Manabi montuvio. One of them was drawn and painted on a cocoa leaf. The painter remembers that the idea was born while touring a small cocoa crop and saw some leaves fall. He had to dry the leaf and apply varnish to it to become a strong canvas. On the sheet he painted a montuvio. “When we think of art we only remember dance and paintings. But we forget the typical things that we live with. ”
Enlarge The Chone Tecao micro-company produces 150 liters of eggnog and cocoa liquor and coffee. Photo: Juan Carlos Pérez for EL COMERCIO Oñate also made a painting inspired by the landscapes of Manabitas.
To the painting he added essence of coffee to give it an autochthonous touch.
Another of the products that were exhibited at the Calceta fair, organized by the Prefecture, was Tecao. This is an enterprise that was born in Chone and consists of making liqueurs with coffee, cocoa and milk.
Carlos Vera, owner of Tecao, remembers that in 2015 they started making eggnog for family consumption, but little by little they began to make tastings and that’s how the venture was born. To give an added value merged the eggnog with cocoa and then also with coffee.
The idea pleased the customers and currently they sell up to 2 000 bottles every month. “We are looking for the eggnog recipe to remain intact with a slight coffee and cocoa flavor, which makes it more manabita”.
Vera has traveled the country with this endeavor. “These events are for us as a stage where we can interact with the client and they can taste the product and give us their opinion.”
Chef Fanny Vergara also used cacao in one of Manabí’s most traditional dishes, such as the fish ceviche. This recipe was made with Manabi cocoa paste and with peanut paste.
The products used in the preparation are collected in chemical-free orchards because, according to Vergara, only that type of food makes the food have the same ancestral touch of manabita food. In the event, which was organized as part of the Month of Manabitismo, chicken tongas were elaborated, with products from the rural area of Manabi.
The Café de Pacoche was also at the fair. This venture is from Manta and was born seven years ago. This product is made with organic coffee, which is grown in an ecological reserve, in a humid forest microclimate, surrounded by seven beaches.
In addition to the Manabi coffee, incense and coffee filters are also found. At the fair, typical desserts made with coffee and cocoa were sold, as well as cosmetic products.
Prefect Orlando Orlando pointed out that fairs and festivals help entrepreneurs and producers make their businesses known.
But above all they are important because entrepreneurs are encouraged to continue fostering the customs and traditions of the province’s crafts and gastronomy.
In fact, at the fair there were also performances by musicians and dancers from Manabí.