Ark of taste
Back to the archive >

Typical of the Chilean region of Los Lagos, mella is a sweet based on a local variety of potato (pilcahues) and honey. Its origins stretch back to the arrival of German immigrants and it is now gradually disappearing. The sweet is only found during the local popular celebrations known as fiestas costumbristas. The commercial production of this sweet, whilst important for the community from a cultural and economic point of view as the raw materials are cheap, has seriously decreased because of the growing importance of the salmon industry for the community.

There are numerous variations but the most common is based on a minced potato dough that may be mixed with pieces of apple. This is wrapped in the leaves of a native plant called nalca or pangue and cooked on a slow heat in a dish full of water. In the Archipelago of Chiloé, where it is also called chuañe, the potatoes are mixed with other local ingredients. In other areas Ulmo honey is added after cooking.

Back to the archive >



Los Lagos

Other info


Cakes, pastries and sweets

Nominated by:José Manuel Barriga Parra