Origins of the Chabacano Morisqueta


My friend at the office who comes from a Spanish-speaking family asked me if we use the word morisqueta for (cooked) rice in Chabacano. I told him yes. He tells me that the word must be Chabacano in origin because in Spanish dictionaries, morisqueta means fraud or dirty trick. 

Morisqueta is also used in Philippine Spanish and it also means (cooked) rice. 

I did some research on the word and it looks like morisqueta is a typical Mexican dish consisting of cooked rice and beans. It is possible that the Chabacano morisqueta came from Mexican Spanish as there are so many words in the Chabacano language with Mexican Spanish origins like petate, zacate, etc. 

The more known word for (cooked) rice in Chabacano, though, is canun (without any stresses). As you may have already guessed, this word comes from the Cebuano kan-on. I am happy to report, though, that the word arroz meaning uncooked rice is still very much in use. 

Here is a Filipino recipe of morisqueta tostada. It is basically Chinese style fried rice with a Filipino twist. 

Here is a Mexican recipe for morisqueta. It is very easy to make in case you are interested.

This web page says that the Spanish term morisqueta refers to the Moors and that it can also mean plain boiled rice. So it is also possible that the word morisqueta in Mexican Spanish refers to steamed rice just like in Chabacano and Philippine Spanish.

This Spanish dictionary says that morisqueta means rice. 

The Diccionario de la Real Academia Española (the ultimate authority in the Spanish language) acknowledges the Philippine Spanish definition of morisqueta (arroz cocido con agua y sin sal, propio de Filipinas).

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