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10/06/2021 - Corporativo

Peruvian Cuisine

Traditionality and uniqueness of Peruvian cuisine, finds its origin in the history that Peru has lived over the centuries.

The indigenous population, including Inca, and all immigrants from Europe, Asia and Africa, influenced a lot the methods of cultivation and attitude to cuisine, by using products available in Peru.

Peruvian cuisine is known as one of the world’s most important cuisines and is an exemplar of fusion cuisine, due to its long multicultural history.

From the snow-capped Andes mountain range and desert to seashore and Amazonian tropical forest, 30 kinds of microclimates can be found there. That gives birth to an array of food options, which nurtured the civilisations of the region over millennia.

Peruvian typical dishes

peruvian cuisine

Peru boasts a wide range of typical products and unique recipes, originating from this particular and huge country.

The diversity of ingredients that it presents allows to write the history of Peru, crossing the traditions and typicality.

Tallarín de Lomo Saltado 

This recipe is made from some of the best ingredients used in Peru:

  • Noodles
  • Beef loin cut into strips
  • Pimiento
  • Ajì amarillo
  • Cebolla
  • Parsley

The salted loin should be in the top ten of the most representative dishes of Peruvian gastronomy. Like much of peruvian food, it is the result of the mixing of cuisines, the fusion of flavors.

According to historians, in 1849 the first Chinese immigrants arrived in our country bringing with them their seasoning, their ingredients and their utensils. The most important of them, the wok, was able to turn our fritters into flaming sautés.

Before the conquest there were not many Peruvian dishes prepared with meat, as their value was extremely high.

Ají de Gallina

As for the origins, the current dish would result from the fusion of Spanish and Quechua ingredients. In particular the hen would be replaced by another bird (known as hualpa) before the Spanish conquest.

The dish then spread to other Latin American countries.

The Ajì de Gallina is a shredded chicken bathes in a thick sauce made with cream, ground walnuts, cheese, and aji amarillo. 

The sauce is mild but piquent, the aji’s fruity, moderately hot bite softened by the nutty, creamy sauce to a comfortable warmth. 

The dish reflects Peru’s love of sauces thickened with chilies, cheese, cream, or even bread, drenched over and often cooked with meats and vegetables.

Here the sauce is mixed with the poultry and served over rice with boiled potatoes and black olives, making for a rich, bright yellow chowder that glistens on the plates of restaurants and households throughout Peru.

Patasca

It is a very popular and nutritious soup, also known as “mondongo soup” and is usually enjoyed in the Andes of Peru. Its origin is pre-Hispanic and in those times it was prepared with meat of alpaca, cuy, and other ingredients of that time.

The patasca whose name comes from the quechua phatasqa, means burst that translates into corn grain burst when cooking.

Each department has certain particularities when preparing the dish, since it depends on the various meats or herbs that are included in the cooking.

Chupe

The Chupe is a typical dish of the city of Arequipa, the white city, is one of the dishes more refined than the Peruvian coast.

peruvian cuisine

Chupe comes from Arequipa, and is a very consistent soup, eaten with a large spoon helped with a fork and knife to cut the pieces of meat or peel the shrimp.

It is prepared with beef, lamb, chicken or chicken, as well as with interiors as with intestines or guts (chaque de tripas) and belly, cecinas and sometimes with shrimp and fish (chupe de viernes).

It carries abundant vegetables such as beans, squash, mote wheat, celery, porro, turnip, carrot, oats, corn, wheat, among others. Some are quite spicy and include chili in their preparation. The potato is always present in the lollipop in different ways, including the chuño, either white or black.

Until a few years ago it was considered a sin to eat meat at Easter and, to avoid the fires of hell, you had to eat only fish.

For this reason, dishes were created, without meat, such as Chupe or “Friday Chupe” (a day that could not eat meat), that has some analogy with the Chilean casserole and the pebre. 

Menestrón

Menestrón is a Peruvian adaptation of the Italian classic soup, Minestrone. 

Once again, it is clear how much influences from the cuisine of the world have always influenced Peruvian cuisine.

Italian food has been a huge influence in Peruvian gastronomy ever since the first Italians arrived in our country. 

In the process of making it their own, Peruvians have changed the method and ingredients of the original Minestrone quite a bit, taking advantage of the bounty of fresh produce from our markets.

It is made with thick noodles, meat, cabbage, carrot, onion, garlic, basil and grated Parmesan cheese. When subjected to a blending process, it was added Peruvian ingredients such as fresh cheese, corn, squash, canary bean, white or yellow potato, among others.

Carapulcra

This famous creole dish of Quechua name and remote pre-Columbian origin has two names: carapulcra and carapulca. 

It is based on potatoes, meat, peanuts, onion, garlic, chili, oil and salt and it is accompanied with rice.

Postres and Desserts

Anyone who has an insatiable sugar craving will agree that sampling a country’s sweets is one of the best parts of traveling. The peruvian combination of Spanish and native culinary influences make for an especially interesting repertoire also of desserts.

Mazamorra – Milky pudding

The most unique Peruvian dessert out there is the mazamorra morada. In short, it has the consistency of thick jelly. It’s usually eaten like pudding.

Mazamorra Morada is made of a myriad of fruits, including Peru’s unique purple corn.

The corn helps give this dish its striking purple color and flavor.

The mixture also includes cornstarch or potato flour and is further flavored with cloves and cinnamon.

 

Arroz zambito – Creamy rice pudding

Even back then, two rice puddings were -and still are- very famous. One is the ubiquitous arroz con leche, white and creamy, served warm with a sprinkling of ground cinnamon. 

The other one, more rustic but equally delicious, is arroz zambito, sweetened with chancaca, and flavored with tiny Chilean coconuts, raisins, and aniseed. With this recipe you will see how a few changes to the traditional rice pudding can create a completely different dessert.

peruvian cuisineConclusions

Although the world’s influence on Peruvian cuisine is clear, it is interesting to study how in fact in Peru all the dishes have been reworked.

Thanks to the different cultivation methods, thanks to the variety of products present on the national territory, Peruvian cuisine has managed to stand out as one of the most varied but above all the best in the world.

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