The roasted guinea pig is the most consumed in the province of Azuay, its cost ranges from $ 10 to $ 20 and depends on the place. Its preparation requires patience since at least it takes an hour to roast it. The guinea pig became food because of its high degree of protein. It is also used by healers to free citizens from bad energies. The guinea pig, also called guinea pig (Cavia porcellus), is a rodent native to South America, especially, is procrea in the regions of Peru, Colombia, Ecuador and Venezuela.
The guinea pig became a highly sought animal, especially in the provinces of Azuay and Loja, because its meat has proteins. In Azuay the guinea pig is prepared in different ways. They roast it and accompany it with boiled potatoes, mote and ají cuencano. María del Carmen Alemán, adviser to the small producers of guinea pigs in San Gerardo, said that this animal is part of the family party, the fiesta of the Azuayos people. “In addition, guinea pig is culture, medicine, food and family economy.” According to Alemán, the guinea pig releases the bad energies of people and that is why it is also used by the shamans to cleanse the evil eye and fright. “A guinea pig soup in our villages is common to cure diseases.” The guinea pig is characterized for being meek, although it is always on alert. It is very rare that it bites before a strange situation or manipulation, in general the answer always is of immobility or on the contrary, it escapes to speed.
Ana Piñencela joined a group of guinea pig producers in the San Gerardo parish, province of Azuay. According to her, the guinea pig became a way to “earn a living”, since this work does not require leaving home. The guinea pig mass in its consumption According to Guillermo Serpa, dean of the Faculty of Agricultural Sciences of the University of Cuenca, this animal is increasingly genetically controlled. “The goal is to make the players healthy and strong,” said the professor.
In the parties of the parishes or communities, the guinea pig can not miss, like chicha de jora and mote. And not only in these celebrations, but also in the mingas. When these works are carried out at noon, the “pampa mesa” is invited, in which the guinea pig is the main protagonist. “If there is no cuicito, there is no party,” said Carmen Valladares, a vendor of roasted guinea pigs in Cuenca.