Peruvian Cuisine is a celebration of Perú. A country with a millenary tradition and a promising future that does not lose sight of its roots and where the art of good eating stands out among its inhabitants as one of the most distinctive signs of its identity.
Lima has been declared the gastronomic capital of Latin America thanks to the breadth and exquisiteness of the dishes that are overwhelmingly approved by the most prestigious chefs and specialists in the field.
Within the variety of liquors manufactured in Peru, pisco is considered a national drink. It comes from local grapes, distilled to obtain it and produce the world famous pisco sour with it. Translucent, crystalline, bright and colorless. As if it were a diamond, pisco demands those same characteristics of quality and beauty to receive its name with honor.
The task of science and art is, then, to make pisco and also know how to drink it. It is a distillate of pure grape juice, between 6 and 7 kilos to obtain a liter, which does not include another ingredient other than the freshly fermented must of different varieties of grapes from our coasts. The result: pure pisco. Pure Peruvian pisco to delight the palate and the heart of the world. Health!
History of Peruvian Cuisine
Peruvian Cuisine has been postulated to be declared a World Heritage Site (2011).
The Peruvian people are famous for their demanding and refined palate, which comes from unmemorable times. Pre-Columbian techniques allowed the preparation of soups, stews and raw fish. Food processing was a common part of daily life, having the knowledge to salt meat, dehydrate and cook in natural earth ovens.
Acoording to the history of Peruvian Cuisine, with the Spanish colonization, together with the African, Chinese, Italian and Japanese migration, Peruvian cuisine welcomed different ways of seeing the world and new preparation techniques. The influence of Spain and China stands out, which originated gastronomies with their own denomination: Creole food and Chifa, respectively.
The richness of Peruvian Cuisine is based on the miscegenation of its cultures along history of Peruvian Cuisine; as well as the existence of one of the greatest biodiversity on Earth, which has produced the birth and evolution of unique gastronomies.
Coastal cuisine dates back to viceregal times, with well-received sweets such as mazamorra, nougat and picarones standing out. Similarly, the raw fish prepared in a dish that has been around the world stand out: the ceviche.
The Andean region maintains its ingredients since the pre-Inca period and in it, the consumption of tubers, corn, llama meat, alpaca, trout and guinea pig has been enriched with the introduction of bread, rice, and pasta. Special mention for the pachamanca: country lunch made underground that gives rise to a delicious and healthy meal.
The cuisine of the jungle, exuberant and exotic like the Amazon, is as wide as it is unknown. The Paiche, a prodigious river fish, as well as fruits in the process of discovery such as camu camu, are raw material for its exquisite dishes.
Peruvian Cuisine Dishes
The coastal cuisine is divided into marine and Creole food. The best known dishes are made based on seafood or fish. The most representative dishes of marine food are shrimp chupe (Arequipa), ceviche, choritos a la chalaca (Callao), tiradito, leche de tigre, leche de tigre, stretcher and others.
- Ceviche: The ceviche consists of the combination of fresh fish and seafood marinated in lemon juice. As for Creole food, we have ají de gallina, carapulca, chicken pickle, rice with chicken, tacu-tacu, rice with duck, cau cau, lomo saltado, grilled chicken, Cause a la Lima, anticuchos, among others. .
- Lomo saltado: The lomo saltado was born thanks to the fusion of Peruvian cuisine with oriental Chinese cuisine and consists of pieces of meat fried with onion and tomato.
Food from the mountains
The food of the sierra has as its main ingredients corn, potatoes and other tubers. Some of the most representative dishes of Andean cuisine are pachamanca, huatia, potato a la huancaína, ocopa and others.
- Pachamanca: It is a typical dish of Peru, made by cooking beef, pork, chicken and guinea pig, as well as other inputs, under the heat of the stones that are heated by the burning of logs.
- Papa a la huancaína: The dish consists of boiled potatoes covered with a cream cheese, oil, salt, yellow pepper and milk to give it consistency.
The jungle kitchen is characterized by the traditional consumption of meats such as huangana, suri, tapir, rodents, armadillo, turtles, woolly monkeys and others.
The most popular dishes of the Peruvian jungle cuisine are juanes, tacacho con cecina, inchicapi, patarashca, chonta salad, among others.
- Juane: Juane is made from rice, chicken meat, olives, boiled egg, among other spices that are wrapped in the bijao leaf and boiled for an hour and a half.
- Tacacho with jerky: The dish consists of a mass of banana, pork, butter and salt called tacacho along with a piece of jerky and a chorizo.
Typical drinks of Peru
- Pisco: Pisco is considered the national drink of Peru and comes from 8 different types of grapes: the Quebranta grape, the Uvina grape, the Mollar grape, the Negra Criolla grape, the Italia grape, the Albilla grape, the Moscatel grape and the Torontel grape.
- Chicha Morada: Chicha morada is a traditional Peruvian soft drink and is native to the Andean region of the country. Some of the ingredients that are used are purple corn, pineapple, apples, cinnamon, lemon and others.
- Mate de Coca: Coca tea is a traditional infusion of the Andean regions of Peru, however, other countries such as Bolivia, Ecuador, Colombia, Chile and Argentina also consume it.
- Chicha de Jora: Chicha de jora is a fermented and traditional drink in Peru and in other countries such as Bolivia and Ecuador. Its main ingredient is malted corn and it is technically considered a craft corn beer.
Typical sweets of Peru
- Picarones: The picarones are made from corn flour, pumpkin and sweet potato. Picarones are traditional sweets in Peruvian gastronomy and their presentation is in the form of rings made of wheat flour dough, pumpkin and sweet potato bathed with the sweet of the cane. sugar called chancaca.
- Suspiro a la Limeña: Suspiro is a traditional dessert from Peru. Suspiro a la Limaña is a traditional dessert from Peru that originates from the city of Lima. Suspiro a la Lima consists of a sweet cream made from milk, sugar, egg yolk and vanilla essence, covered with meringue based on egg whites, port wine and sugar.
- Purple porridge: Purple mazamorra along with zambito rice.The purple mazamorra is a typical dessert in Peruvian gastronomy and its preparation is based on concentrated purple corn with cornstarch. The dessert is usually accompanied by rice pudding and called “classic” or “combined”.
- Rice Zambito:
- Zambito rice with coconut grated. Zambito rice is an original dessert from Peru and its origin derives from rice pudding. The dessert basically consists of rice pudding plus pecans, golden raisins and chancaca, the last one is the one that adds the characteristic brown color of zambito rice.
Mistura, held in the city of Lima, has established itself in a few years as the most important gastronomic fair in Latin America and acquires growing international notoriety.
And it is not just a food festival, but much more, It is a party where Peruvians of various social sectors, ages, gender gather without social distinctions around our pots and stoves to celebrate our culinary tradition, surprise ourselves with our creativity, reaffirm our identity and celebrate our cultural diversity. In Peru throughout the centuries food has been associated with the Fiesta.
It is on the occasion of the patron saint festivities, Inti Raymi, San Juan, Cruz de Motupe, Señor Cautivo, Christmas, Easter and family celebrations (weddings, birthdays, baptisms) that the best stews have been prepared using techniques and recipes that our stews and Cooks have passed down from generation to generation.
In the festivals and in the traditional picanterías, food has gone hand in hand with music and social fraternization among Peruvians of the various strata. This is the spirit that predominates in Mistura.
The fair brings together the various actors in the Peruvian Cuisine chain: small farmers, pisco producers, cooks, bakers, food vendors, candy stores, huariques, restaurants, cooking institutes, food processing companies.
At Mistura we pay a special tribute to our mother earth. Nature has been lavish with Peru. Throughout its 7 thousand years of history, our homeland continues to offer one of the most fascinating pantries on the planet. And part of that wealth is due to the Peruvian man.
To the respectful dialogue that she established with the pacha mama, with its 85 geographical and climatic environments. That has been the magic formula to have that variety of products that today Mistura gathers in the Great Market and they are a fundamental part of Peruvian Cuisine and world food.
11 reasons why Peruvian Food is Good
Food changes everyone’s spirits and Peruvian cuisine is no exception. The worst days for a Peruvian can be fixed with an appetizing pottage. A rice with chicken, some beans with dry or a ceviche, can be the solution to end a gray day. This is the power of Peruvian cuisine, and it has the same effect with a foreign visitor.
But, is Peruvian Food Good? Lunch hours in Peru are a real party. The spirits of the Peruvians improve when they feel the aroma of the delicious dishes. You don’t need to go to a five-star restaurant to enjoy a good plate of food. Homemade food or food from the markets can delight even the most demanding palate.
Many do not explain how the flavor of Peruvian food can reach the point of being so exquisite and unique. For the curious, its secret lies in these 11 reasons why Peruvian Food is Good:
1. Always tasty
You don’t need a big budget to try a delicious Peruvian stew.
2. Three regions: coast, mountains and jungle
Peru is one of the few fortunate countries to have the three natural regions: coast, mountains and jungle. This detail makes its gastronomy more exquisite.
3. The star dish: the ceviche!
It is written in different ways and they are all fine. Ceviche, ceviche or sebiche, they all mean the same thing. The union of acidic, salty and spicy ingredients generates a special flavor that delights anyone.
4. Variety of fruits and vegetables
The variety of ingredients is essential to create tasty recipes. Peruvian gastronomy is fortunate because it has many types for each ingredient.
5. Fresh ingredients
In Peruvian cuisine, great care is taken that the ingredients are fresh. That is one of the secrets for the food to be prepared to achieve that taste that dazzles palates.
6. The point of flavor: the spicy
When you get north, it is impossible to stop eating chili. Actually, it’s the perfect accompaniment across the country. In any part of Peru, chili is used to enhance flavors, it works with soup and with the main dish.
7. Explosions of color
Peruvian food is not only an explosion of flavors in the mouth, it is also an explosion of colors in the eyes. Here the theories of color psychology are fulfilled where it is indicated that we must eat at least five colors to be healthy.
8. Stews and soups per heap
Peruvian gastronomy is ideal for those who like to try a little of everything because it has different recipes. There are countless dishes such as chupe, carapulcra, tacu-tacu or cau-cau, which are characterized by having a strong flavor that whets the appetite.
9. Blessed little field!
It can be the perfect pre-lunch appetizer, or the ideal accompaniment to a plate of ceviche or chicken broth. The mountain court pairs very well with different Peruvian foods, and can even be enjoyed alone with a glass of beer.
10. Dishes and drinks to choose from
Just as there is a great variety of dishes, Peruvian cuisine also has an endless number of drinks. There are regional drinks such as uvachado from the jungle, warm from the mountains or chicha morada from the coast. Each one has a different flavor, but all are palatable.
11. The best seasoning
If there is something that Peruvians are proud of, it is their gastronomy. It connects with its history, traditions and culture. Its variety has managed to create a range of seasonings and blends that continue to surprise.}