Monday, October 10
Exploring the World on Your Tastebuds: The Flavors of Peru
Peruvian flavors bring something new to the table: a more zesty taste with a little bite of spice care of the local yellow pepper known as aji Amarillo. Peruvian food isn't all about flavor, though. It's also about something completely different owing to the heavy oriental influence the coastal cuisine gets. Influenced by the Japanese and their descendants, Peruvian cuisine includes various raw fish dishes such as the popular ceviche and tiraditos. While the experience of eating tiraditos might be familiar to anyone who's enjoyed sushi, ceviche deserves its own mention as Peru's flagship dish. This flavorful mix of raw seafood, lime juice and hot pepper marinade with sweet potato and corn is the epitome of fusion that perfectly captures Peru's culinary portrait. The fish, usually sea bass, is prepared Japanese-style, marinated with Spanish limes and onions and topped off with the native Incan hot peppers. If you truly want to begin experiencing Peru's flavors, you might as well start off with this memorable dish. If you're not as adventurous when it comes to exploring flavor, Peruvian cuisine has some milder selections, too. African influences lend themselves to a number of simpler dishes such as anticuchos—grilled skewers of beef hearts, marinated in a hot pepper sauce. Tacu tacu, another African creation adapted by the Peruvians, is a sumptuous take on the tortilla or tamale made with leftover beans and rice, seasoned with onions, garlic and hot peppers, and fried in vegetable oil. Hungry yet? What kind of Peruvian creation would you consider ordering in? We'd love to hear what you have to say.