Arroz con Chancho

This recipe is called Arroz con Chancho, which translates to rice with pig. Spanish can sometimes be confusing because it often varies from country to country. I was once speaking to some Cubans about roasting some meat and one mentioned what they had roasted over the weekend. I didn’t hear him clearly so I asked him to repeat himself. His friend said “Oh, si aquí se dice oveja.” Translation: oh, yeah here they say oveja” Oveja means sheep. I asked what he had originally said and he said “Borrego” which technically also means ‘sheep’ but specifically it means ‘lamb.’ It can get confusing.

Off the top of my head, I can think of three ways to say ‘pig’ in Spanish: cerdo, puerco, and marrano. Growing up we always called pigs ‘marranos’ and pork was ‘puerco’; cerdo wasn’t used very often. I bring this up because when I saw the name for this recipe, I had to look up ‘chancho.’ Based on context clues, I quickly figured out it meant pork but I was curious to learn more. It appears that ‘chancho’ is more common in South America, which explains why I’m not familiar. So moral of the story: Español is muy dificil. Spanish is very hard.




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