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La Marraqueta

Chilean French Bread Rolls

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La Marraqueta

Marraquetas - Chilean French Bread Rolls - Pan Chileno

Marian Blazes

La marraqueta (also known is pan chileno, pan frances, and pan batido) is the most famous Chilean bread - its really something of an institution in Chile. In fact, Chileans consume almost 100 kilos of bread per person per year, and a lot of that bread is in the form of marraquetas. A marraqueta is a long oval french bread roll, with a nice crust and a distinctive shape. It's large, almost the size of two side-by-side bagels, and partially divided into 4 pieces.

Chileans often break a marraqueta in half, then split it to make sandwiches with things like carne mechada (beef brisket) and sausage (chorípan). The marraqueta is popular for breakfast, or for la once (afternoon "tea" or merienda), spread with avocado (pan con palta) or pebre, a Chilean "salsa".

It's a bit difficult to shape this iconic bread as well as the Chilean bakeries do it (my homemade versions in this picture aren't quite right, but I'm still practicing). Chilean bakeries have specialized equipment to do it, such as the dobladora de marraquetas in this video. Bakers use long thin boards to slide them in and out of huge ovens. This funny video (which is in Spanish, but is entertaining even if you don't understand the words) shows how important this bread is to Chileans, and addresses the apparently eternal debate about whether the whole piece of bread counts as one marraqueta or two.

Recipe for Marraquetas
Recipe for Hallullas
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