Peruvian Mazamorra Morada – Purple Corn Pudding is a popular Peruvian dessert made with Peruvian chicha morada and thickened with sweet potato starch (or potato starch). The glorious purple hue makes a stunning presentation for special occasions, and while the name is complicated, making it is quite easy!
Admittedly, I have a love affair with Peru and all things Peruvian. This gorgeous royal purple dessert looks and sounds. ROYAL. And probably intimidating? It’s not.
Do you remember the Peruvian Chicha Morada recipe I posted a few weeks back? The base for this lovely, light pudding is chicha morada. As I suggested in the post, you can make a batch, and once it’s made, you’ve got the foundation for both Mazamorra Morada and Chicha Morrada and Pisco Cocktail.
In an effort to make this recipe “stand alone,” I have included the ingredients and instructions for making the chicha morada, but keep in mind that you can make it and have extra. I’d say that’s a win!
About Mazamorra Morada – Purple Corn Pudding
Mazamorra morada is arguably the most typical of Peruvian desserts. You will find it on the streets of Cuzco, on the menus of the finest restaurants in Lima, and even in the meal tent high in the Andes cooked by a Quechua chef for the Studies Abroad group from UTRGV where my husband is Dean of the Honors College.
This thick, delicious purple goo is made with Peruvian maiz morado, fresh and dried fruit, and spices then brightened up with fresh lime juice, sweetener, and thickened with harina de camote (sweet potato starch).
This light dessert is traditionally served warm – a welcome treat when shivering in the Andes – or cold. Just days ago, we had a reunion with our 2017 students, and I made it the day before and served it cold. I love it either way!
Lastly, you’ll garnish the purple corn pudding with fresh fruit… pears and peaches are my personal favorite. A sprinkling of ground cinnamon is traditional. For more on Mazamorra Morada – Purple Corn Pudding see this article.
Making Mazamorra Morada
As I mentioned above, I make the chicha morada, and then have enough for a couple of different uses. Don’t be scared off by the total time; the dessert only requires 30 minutes once the chicha morada is made.
- Place the ingredients for the chicha morada in your Instant Pot or large pot on the stove.
- Cook 25 minutes (IP) or 60 minutes stove top.
- Strain and add fresh lime juice and sweetener.
- Add harina de camote to a 1/4 cup chicha morada. Whisk and then add to the simmering chicha morada. Cook until thickened.
Tips, Tricks, and Substitutions
- Make a big batch of chicha morada (mine yields 6 cups). You’ll need 4 cups for your mazamorra morada, and you can use the rest in cocktails or on ice!
- If you can’t find harina de camote at your local Latin foods market or Asian market, potato starch is more widely available. You can also order it on Amazon.
- You can use a wide variety of dried fruit – prunes and quince are traditional. I had pears, apples on hand on photo day. Chop them fairly small.
If you’re looking for a light, vegan, gluten free dessert ( or a new, delicious dessert), you really need to give this Peruvian Mazamorra Morada Recipe a try! The name may be intimidating, but it really is simple to make!
- 15-16 ounces maiz morado (purple corn)
- 1 large apple, cut in chunks
- the peel of 1 pineapple
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 5 cloves
- 5 allspice berries
- 2 star anise
- 8 cups water
- sweetener to taste (see notes)
- 4 cups chicha morada (above)
- 3/4 cup dried fruit (see notes)
- 3/8 cup harina de camote (see notes)
- Juice of 1 lime (2 if not juicy)
- Add all ingredients except sweetener to pot or Instant Pot. Cook 25 minutes under pressure with a 10 minute pressure release or 50-60 minutes on the stove at a low boil.
- Strain, pressing solids to get every drop!
- Don't sweeten until you use in a recipe!
- Sweeten 4 cups of chicha morada to taste. We don't like it real sweet, and about 1/2 cup sweetener is plenty for us. You may want to taste again after adding the lime juice.
- Add 3 3/4 cup (reserve 1/4 cup) chicha morada to a sauce pan with the chopped dried fruits. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Cook 20 minutes to soften the fruits.
- Whisk the reserved 1/4 cup chicha morada with the harina de camote. When smooth, whisk into the pudding. Bring back to a boil.
- Cook 5 minutes at a low boil, stirring constantly until thickened.
- Remove from the heat. Whisk in the lime juice.
- Taste for sweetening and adjust if desired.
- Dust with ground cinnamon and garnish with thin-sliced fresh fruit as desired. Enjoy!
As mentioned in the post, you can use a variety of dried fruit: Prunes, quince, pears, apples, apricots, cranberries, cherries, etc.
Harina de camote can be found at Latin and Asian markets (you may need to ask about sweet potato starch as the label may not be in English). Potato starch is fine. Some American versions call for corn starch, but I don't feel it is a good substitute.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 125