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Potatoes, Popcorn and Peru

Today's cooking lesson....

sunny 20 °C

People may not think of Peru when it comes to food but the country is home to outstanding culinary delights and some unusual and local foods. Our guide tells us that Peruvian cuisine is second only to France

First, you need to know that Peru has about 3000 varieties of potatoes in the country. There are a few common varieties that are generally served in the cities and towns. Most of the others are grown in small communities. It seems that Peru has the perfect climate for growing so many potatoes. They also dehydrate some versions to save for future use. we were told this is not the tastiest way to enjoy potatoes.

Pisco sours - the local drink is Pisco Sours. I believe I have written about these local specialties. The more we try the better we like them.

Popcorn - did you know that popcorn originated in Peru?

Corn- next to potatoes, corn is the other major crop. Just like potatoes there are many varieties, including a jumbo version that is sold in a boiling pot in a lot of stalls. Aside from rice pudding, the other major dessert is purple corn pudding, a jello like pudding using Purple corn. It has an interesting texture, to say the least. They also deep fry the kernels to make a Peruvian version of our corn nuts - Maiz Chullpi. Corn is also used to color some of the yarn used at the women's weaving project.

Coffee - we learned that Peru grows a large volume of coffee but does not export it directly to the world. They sell it to Columbia who then packages it and sells it to the world. Go figure.

Cheese - The Peruvians make some of the most excellent cheeses, mostly salty versions with a feta like texture. They also have another cheese that is similar to the Greek Saganaki. It also makes excellent pizza.

Cerversa - the local brew is Cusqueña. They have a bit of a monopoly however we have tried the 1.1 litres of Pilser, brewed since 1863. I know that because we are sampling one of those right now! :)

Posted by jonaway 11:40 Archived in Peru

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