Tocosh, the “natural penicillin” from the Andes

Tocosh, the “natural penicillin” from the Andes

Tocosh, togosh or tocos is a food product obtained by an Andean conservation technique that has nutritional and therapeutic properties. It is the result of the bacterial fermentation of the potato (corn, olluco, oca or arracacha in some cases), stored in wells built in the earth, wrapped in straw or 'ichu' and mechanically pressed with stones under a stream of water from a spring by straw or mesh for 4 to 24 months. Then it is removed, aerated and sunbathed, leaving the tocosh ready to be used in food.

Since Inca times, the inhabitants of the central regions of Peru use tocosh as a medicine, being the tocosh mazamorra or tocosh api the best known form of consumption. By following this process, potatoes are reduced in size, except for their peel, it is characterized by its unpleasant smell, which is the first to be perceived, a peculiarity that does not limit its consumption or marketing.

This ancestral preparation of the Andean potato, secretes a very strong smell but provides very remarkable benefits and healthy properties, in fact, it is recognized as "natural penicillin".

Among its properties we can comment on its high content of alkaloids, amino acids, antimicrobials and many more.

Benefits of Tocosh

Tocosh is widely considered a natural antibiotic due to its natural properties. Thanks to the fermentation process, it has become a traditional medicine mainly in its country of origin Peru.

This potato has a low fat content, and acts as an antibacterial, helping to control bronchial infections, flu, pneumonia, gastrointestinal infections, as well as being used as an effective healing agent.

Particularly for gastritis, tocosh flour tends to have excellent results. This food, with an unpleasant smell, but considered a natural and antimicrobial penicillin, helps to strengthen the immune system by curing gastritis and stomach ulcers.

Tocosh has also been used to raise body temperature, perfect for cold climates. By diluting a teaspoon of tocosh flour in a glass of hot water we can warm our body.

This same flour can be used in wounds to promote healing and avoid any type of infection thanks to its antimicrobial characteristics.

It is recorded that Tocosh helps prevent osteoporosis and increases intestinal flora, helping better digestion of food.

Its contents are very beneficial for treating kidney problems, a teaspoon of flour in a glass of cold water will do wonders for this type of disease. In the same way for hemorrhoids, this treatment can reduce the discomfort caused by this problem.

Tocosh Preparation

Potato Tocosh is a highly appreciated food in the area and is made in all the rural communities of Ancash. After the potato harvest, especially of the Huayro, Iskupuru and Blanca varieties, the selection of the potato that will be used for the production of Tocosh is made, the discard one is used (the most bitter), a well is dug near the irrigation channel. about 60 cm deep; You can also use the same ditch that is accommodated with straw called "shicshi" that is brought from the heights, the straw must be very dense and caked between the straw, the potato must be very hidden and protected. Many heavy stones are placed on this large package, so that the water that runs slightly does not wash away the tubers. It is left there for a month and a half. After this time, the whole package of straw and potatoes is taken out of the well and placed in a shady place to drain the water; it is left there for three days. Once dry, the rotten potatoes (tocosh) are removed and placed in a new shicshi package to store them, either for sale or consumption, they should not be kept for long.


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