One of the reasons for why I decided to travel to Peru, was because of an encounter with Andrés Ugaz, a Peruvian man who defines himself as a gastronomic researcher. He studied anthropology but he's also a chef and a baker.
On our way to the International Food Fair Terra Madre, organized by Slow Food in Turin, Italy, we started talking about Peruvian gastronomy. I didn't know anything about it at that time.
In Andrés' view, after several years of terrorist sieges and economic crises, the resurgence of Peru came from the hand of gastronomy. Gastronomy gave to this country a new impulse, a common goal, it reorganized people to support the food supply chain from its many different aspects (producers, marketers, cooks, restaurants, students and tourism promoters). Gastronomy and food culture is the new pride of Peru and people are willing to collaborate together to make it become more and more important (as demonstrated also by the latest news Peruvian named best chef in the world). Food and all the related issues can work as a social glue to bring together a nation that previously felt fragmented and shocked.
The result being that Peru has been selected by the World Travel Awards (WTA) as the World's Leading Culinary Destination in 2016 for the fifth consecutive year.
That's something to be proud of, there's no doubt! Being Italian and working as an academic in food studies, I was quite impressed.
We went on talking about bread, as Andrés wrote a book titled '