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anil

Peru -- Peruvian

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Has anybody ? Somebody ? explored this culinary place of late ? I threaten to do a mileage run there :biggrin:

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I'm not sure what kind of information you're looking for. If you're looking for an introduction to Peruvian food in general, you might want to read this book:

http://www.davidscooking.com/cookbooks/coo...krevs/peru.html

It doesn't focus particularly on Lima, but it's about the only introduction to Peruvian food I know.

Someday, I'm going to get down there and check it out myself.

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I'm not usually a big fan of McDonalds, but I do like to see what interesting things they have in different countries -- when I was in Lima 2 yrs ago, they had a very yummy spicy yellow pepper sauce -- great w/ fries. Probably not what you're looking for, but...there's also great seafood, especially ceviche.

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I heard they eat guinea pig, it's called qui or kwee...

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El Señorío de Sulco in Miraflores, Lima is a great place to go to safely try nearly every dish you could possibly imagine in Peru. My mouth is watering just writing this. They have a buffet and it really is good!!!

Lots of other good restaurants in Lima : from inexpensive to very expensive.

Enjoy!

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Por favor........Tell me more about cuisine in Lima, Cusco, centre Peru.

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Por favor........Tell me more about cuisine in Lima, Cusco, centre Peru.

Miraflores district has many restaurants. Cerviche of various different types (yummy) While they have very tender slices of steak, they somtimes are soaked in fresh lemon mustard sauces. I had an excellent Shrimp doused in fresh tomato and herbs sauce. Foe peruvian regular fare, do try chicken stew on rice with raw sliced red-onions and yum, french fries :smile:

Also try their favourite alcoholic drink pico sour and the popular non alcoholic inca cola.

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I cooked in a couple restaurants in peru, specifically Lima, and spent a few months eating eating eating everything I could. So if there are people still interested in information on what I feel is the world's best underappreciated cuisine, I'd be glad to write all about it.

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I cooked in a couple restaurants in peru, specifically Lima, and spent a few months eating eating eating everything I could.  So if there are people still interested in information on what I feel is the world's best underappreciated cuisine, I'd be glad to write all about it.

please do.

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I heard they eat guinea pig, it's called qui or kwee...

I believe it's cui and it's available in several South American countries. I have a friend in Ecuador who ate it on my prompting. Not a pleasant experience. Like eating a giant greasy rat. But she ate it. They even brought it out spread eagle on a rotisserie with skin and head and tail still on.

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Are there any Peruvians on this list? or past traveling foodies who would know what cities or villages in Peru (coastal, Andes and Amazon regions) are noted for special regional dishes?

I'm putting together an itinerary for a trip this summer and food is my focus.

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Are there any Peruvians on this list? or past traveling foodies who would know what cities or villages in Peru (coastal, Andes and Amazon regions) are noted for special regional dishes?

Sorry, wish I could help, but I do have one suggestion: try this book. It may give you an interesting perspective on the Incan and Native American influences of Peru and how the cuisine has moved. I have found it fascinating. It also covers Mayan and Aztec foods and traditions.

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I will look up the book you suggested by Sophie Coe. I'm familiar with her wonderful book, "The True History of Chocolate," finished posthumously by her husband, so the one you recommended is bound to be insightful. Thanks.

I have the one cookbook in English I know of that features Peruvian food, written by Copeland Marks. I'm also interested in any Peruvian cookbooks in Spanish and sources to buy them. There must be many of them available, but at this point I don't know which ones are the best in their genre.


Edited by IamAFoodie (log)

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Two LA-SA cookbooks I know of that are decent that include Peruvian food are these:

Ortiz

Kijac

I'm no expert at all in SA cooking, but I looked over available cookbooks extensively before buying these. If you plan on cooking and exploring other LA cuisines, these may be quite useful to you as they are to me.

On the subject of Spanish language cookbooks: I am actually in Mexico right now and what I have done the last couple times is pick up cheap but decent basic cooking magazines. There are street vendors here who always have a few. Today I got a full color magazine with no ads called Cocina Practica whose issue is on Antojitos for 18 pesos, less than $1.75. Because they have good pictures even though my Spanish is mediocre at best, I can still follow it well even if I have to break out th dictionario every once in a while. I am sure any used bookstore in Peru would have some that you could buy cheap. Might be an easy way to start.

There is a Peruvian restaurant in Portland, OR -- my hometown -- that makes excellent food and would probably help you in your search if you gave them a call during a non busy hour. I think they probably have email, too. In fact, here is their website:

Andina

Good luck.

btw, I read in that Coe book that Peru has over 100 varieties of potatoes and that the locals can distinguish them by taste. I can barely do that with what you find in the supermarket.

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I did some further searching for books in English about Peruvian cookery besides the one by Copeland Marks. This is what I found:

Tastes of Peru by Marina Polvay June 03

ISBN 0781809657

A Russian Jew Cooks in Peru by Violeta Autumn 1973

ISBN 0912238410

Peruvian Experience: Cuisine & Culture in the Land of the Incas

ISBN 1567900704

Because this book is quite short (35 pp.), I suspect it might be for children.

This may be of interest for the African influence in Peruvian cuisine, which we know occurred.

The Peppers, Cracklings & Knots of Wool Cookbook: The Global Migration of African Cuisine

by Diane M. Spivey Dec 2000

ISBN 0791443752

The Autumn book is available used for $67.41. The Spivey book for $14.10. The others aren't available as far as I know.

I've order all 4 through our university library's world-wide lending program, so I'll have a chance to see their content. I can report back on this when I get my hands on them in the next few weeks (I hope).

Now I'll have to begin looking for Peruvian cookbooks in Spanish! Anyone have some titles to report on?

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A search at Powell's books came up with this list:

http://www.powells.com/search/DTSearch/sea...y=skeptopotamus

If you get the full list you'll see Tastes of Peru there, but they don't have it in stock either.

I've got a PM to another member about a source for Latin American cookbooks in Spanish -- some source in California. I'll try to post it if I get a response.

I'll email Andina, too, and ask them for any suggestions.

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I'm still waiting for dbortnick's stories on Peruvian cuisine... dbortnick?

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Got this email back from Peter at Andina on Peruvian cookbooks. (btw, you can see a report on this restaurant in the PacificNW forum):

Nick,

Thanks for your interest! Here's a few recommendations:

Una Fiesta del Sabor - El Peru y Sus Comidas

    by Sara Beatriz Guardia (winner of Gourmand World Cookbook Award)

El Arte de La Cocina Peruana

Eds. Jorge and Felipe Ossio Guiulfo (available in English)

A Russian Jew Cooks in Peru

(forgot the author's name, but a great old-fashioned cookbook)

Let me know if these leads pan out.

Saludos, and good luck!

Peter

theabroma also sent me the info on a bookdealer:

Of course, Nick! www.karnobooks.com It's Howard Karno Books in Los Angeles. He is an antiquarian book dealer specializing in manuscripts and books about Mexico, Central, and South America. He publishes a catalog 2-4 times a year listing all his holdings in gastronomy. Some are rare, and quite expensive. Others are more affordable, and less likely to be museum pieces. He also maintains an office in Mexico City.

I have purchased books from Karno for about 4-5 years, and have always been delighted with them. You can search holdings on their web site, too.

Good luck. I too am waiting to hear some reports on Peru.

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Peruvian food..here goes....

Much like the United States Peru is a bit of a melting pot for many other cultures, and nowhere is it more apparent than in the cuisine. True, the majority of Peru is still dominated by native Incans, Quechuas, and other Andean cultures, but in the largest cities, namely, Lima, the population is as diverse as many other world cities. The biggest influences to peruvian cuisine are Asian. In even the most traditional of peruvian eateries, the use of soy sauce, sesame oil, and MSG is prevailant.

The most indigenous peruvian foods can be found in the mountain cities. Along the coast, especially in Lima there are many restaurants featuring traditional Peruvian cuisine, but nairy a few are not somehow influenced by atleast asian cuisine. I spent a few weeks working in the kitchen of a cevicheria called El Pescado Loco, in Linse, Lima. Hands down this was the best ceviche that I have had. Pretty impressive for a working class cevicheria, but like all cities some of the best food are in the lesser developed areas. Two surprise ingredients they put in the ceviche were sesame oil and MSG. They do love their MSG, its used just like salt. This wasn't the only restaurant where I observed this.

I also spent some time in the kitchen at a restaurant called Rafael, in Miraflores, Lima. Now, unlike el pescado loco, this was an upscale restaurant with a top notch chef, one of Lima's hot spots for haute cuisine.

At Rafael I experienced true artisinal cooking within the constraints of a developing nation, a great thing. For this meant that everything was fresh, it had to be, because quality refrigeration was nothing to rely on. You see the purveyors brought in everything the morning they caught it or killed it. The turkey I got to cook my Peruvian family a thanksgiving meal was still warm from its own body heat. This is a delight not often experienced in the US where many foods are caught, frozen, shipped, thawed, and sold as fresh...a crime if you ask me. But I digress, at Rafael, the food is Mediterranean-Peruvian. Rafael incorporates such techniques/dishes as confit, braised baby lamb, tortilla espagnole, vitello tonato, housemade pastas, breads, and ice creams. However, even there, sesame oil, MSG, and soy sauce are used in preparing tiradito, a cross between ceviche and sashimi, also highliting the japanese influence in Peru.

One of the best ways to experience Japan's foundation in Peru is to go to Matsuei, a sushi restaurant in Lima. This is where Nobu got his start after he left Japan. In fact Nobu talks a bit about his Peruvian experience in his cookbook.

But if traditional Peruvian food at its best is what you want than you must go to Las Brujas de Cachiche or La Huaca Pullana. The neat thing about La Huaca is that it overlooks one of Limas only ancient ruins sites. Not to mention the papas a la huancaina there are like nothing else I have ever experienced. Basically they are mashed peruvian potato balls served with two sauces, one a blend of fresh cheese, cookies, and nuts, the other a green sauce made from huacatay, Peruvian Marigold.

Two other can't miss experiences....pisco sours at la caleza and pollo a la brassa, available on every block in every city in peru (or so it seems).

Well time is short, more to follow, so much more to write........

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..... So if there are people still interested in information on what I feel is the world's best underappreciated cuisine, I'd be glad to write all about it.

I agree - Go ahead and post about Lima - It always helps.

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Much to my dismay, I meant to post here and gather I posted outside......?

dbortnick's post was wonderful and 'all in the good way' intrusive, evocative of Peruvian fare.

Thanks much. And if anyone has input on the like in Cusco, please post.

Truffle

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Truffle, as far as your question about my position at Rafael, it was a three or four week 'stag', and this was in November and December of 2001.

As for Cusco, I can't be nearly as informative, as I was often hiking and camping. I can though, tell you this.... Cusco is a town more for the bars, clubs, and lounges than for the cuisine. It's most young travellers favorite spot in Peru, constant fun and 'all in a good way' densensitized to travellers. There is a small joint just off the plaza de armas, across from la cathedral, that has an incredible chorizo sandwich and chicha morada (think purple corn kool-aid). If you want great traditional food, and aren't on a tight budget, El Truco, is a must stop.

However, as I mentioned before, Cusco is most heralded, other than the connection to Machu Picchu, for its hip night scene. My favorite spot was Los Perros Couch Bar. NYC style meets San Fran laid back meets Andean foothills, not to mention backgammon. Wish we had that here in DC. Mama Africa is a dance club where every traveller seems to stop by, but I didn't think much of it. There is a bar called Ukuku that shows movies and has internet access as well as good people, an all around useful place. This isn't even the tip of the iceberg, but its a good starting point.

One other thing, if you happen to be there for New Years, as I was, it is definately one of the most unique (naked races around the plaza de armas), fun (drinking and dancing with people from atleast 10 different countries), and dangerous (a firework exploded on my side) places on earth.

A last note, if you go to Aguas Caliente, the small town experienced by all travelers who visit macchu picchu, do head up the main hill to a restaurant called Kikkis. It is owned by a really friendly guy named kikki (from NJ) and the food is delicious, as prepared by his Peruvian wife.

Thats it for now.

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It is unfair to evaluate and talk about peruvian food in terms of restaurants. yes, they have it -- but much of peruano flavour and beauty lies in the smaller cantinas.

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I've recently read about the salt pans near Maras in the Sacred Valley. Does anyone know the history of this area? Since it's nowhere near the sea, the ground water must become saline by seeping through layers of rock salt. I gather the salt pans are hard to get to, but I intend to try when in Peru this summer. Would appreciate hearing more about the salt harvesting.

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I heard they eat guinea pig, it's called qui or kwee...

I believe it's cui and it's available in several South American countries. I have a friend in Ecuador who ate it on my prompting. Not a pleasant experience. Like eating a giant greasy rat. But she ate it. They even brought it out spread eagle on a rotisserie with skin and head and tail still on.

Did they remove the fur? Wow... I think something about the tail would really bother me I don't know why....

Greasy rat huh? I thought they would cut the head off on just serve a part of it like frogs legs or something...


Edited by tissue (log)

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