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Neighborhood Eats: Soup and corn balls from I Love Paraguay in Queens

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The Queens restaurant is famous for its soup and corn balls.

Paraguayan food is not a typical cuisine that usually comes to people's minds when figuring out what they want to eat. But the Ojeda family wants to change that.

Nancy and Carlos Ojeda are proud of their heritage, as seen in the name of their restaurant, I Love Paraguay.

The couple first opened a deli in Westchester, where they sold Paraguayan snacks and groceries, and then launched their Sunnyside spot first as a bakery in 2007, quickly expanding the menu soon after.

One dish the Paraguayans are famous for is soups, such as the vori vori chicken soup, a recipe the Ojeda's were willing to share.

Soup Ingredients

1.2 kg or 6 piece of chicken leg
1 red pepper, seeds removed, chopped
4 tomatoes, peeled, chopped
3 garlic cloves
1 onion, chopped
1 bunch of green parts only of scallions
2 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
cup parsley leaves
1 tbsp oregano leaves, plus extra to serve
1 tbsp olive oil
2 tsp finely chopped oregano
1 cup of chicken broth
1 tbsp of vegetable oil
6 cups of water

Corn Balls (vori vori)

160 g (1 cup) cornmeal flour
100 g muenster cheese
1 egg, lightly beaten

Soup Preparation:

Warm your soup pod by adding 1 tbsp of vegetable oil and start saute the chicken legs on both sides for about 4 minutes or until chicken has a light brown color. Add your chopped onions, scallions, red peppers, and 1 tomato peeled and chopped and continue cooking.

After you have formed a light sauce with your vegetables and chicken legs, add 6 cups of water and bring to boil. Once the soup is boiling, add parsley leaves, salt, bay leaves and leave boiling for about 40 minutes under low medium heat.

Corn Balls (Vori Vori)

To make the Corn Balls, combine the cornmeal flour, the muenster cheese, egg, oregano and mix into the flour. Season to taste. Skim the fat from the surface of the stock, and with a soup spoon add the liquid to the flour mixture to moisten. Using your hands, mix until well combined, adding more stock if necessary, until the dough just comes together. Roll into marble-sized balls and set aside. Once you have finished making the corn balls add them to your boiling soup while stirring. Leave cooking for about 5 minutes until aromatic.

To serve, ladle soup into bowls and scatter with extra oregano.

Related Topics:
foodneighborhood eatsfoodrecipeNew York CitySunnyside
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