Wednesday, November 21, 2018


I used to love to converse with Escolástica Cabrera (also known as Tan Esco or Tan Átika) about anything. It didn't matter what we were talking about. It was her superb and articulate Chamorro that I loved listening to and learning from.

Here we talk about two different kinds of cooking by boiling.

If the boiling is done quickly, it's chankocha.

If more time is needed to cook it, it's sotne.

Chankocha is borrowed from the Spanish sancocha (the verb being sanchocar), which means to boil or parboil (not completely boiled).

So, for example, most vegetables can be cooked quickly. But some, like hard tubers (sweet potatoes, yam, tapioca/cassava), will only get soft and edible when boiled a long time. Some animals (like wild deer meat) are so tough that they need a long time to boil, whereas lobsters and shrimp can cook very quickly.


Chankocha, sotne...
(Chankocha, sotne...)

Ennague meggai na man lalache este påle' i man hoben...
(There we have many of these young people who are wrong, Father...)

I chankocha yanggen gollai.
(It's chankocha if it's vegetables.)

Chankocha sa' an un råtoto ha' Kalan para un na' fañåggue ha'.
(Chankocha because when it's only a brief As if you're just going to make it tremble.)

På'go i ma sotne...kamuti, då anåkko' tiempon-ña. Ma sotne. Mendioka.
(Now sotne....sweet potatoes, yam....which take a long time. Sotne. Tapioca.)

Taiguennao siha. Ennague' tiningo'-ho.
(Those things. That's what I know.)

Yan i mahongang pat uhang yanggen ma "boil" nai håfa gi fino' Chamorro?
(And lobster or shrimp if it's boiled what is it in Chamorro?)

Eyague' chankocha lokkue' sa'....ti anåkko' tiempon-ña siha,
(That's chankocha also because....those things don't take a long time,)

un råtoto ha' man måsa chaddek.
(a short time and they're cooked quickly.)

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