Peru has one of the top-ranked cuisines in the world thanks to its extraordinary quality of crops. Try these Peruvian products.
Peru is rich in superfoods that grow in every corner of the country- from the coast, to the jungle, to the Andes mountains. These are the Peruvian products that will fill your taste buds with intense flavor.
1. Pisco to pamper our souls
Pisco is the leading star of each bar in Peru. This aromatic spirit distilled from grapes is the Peruvian drink par excellence. Apart from drinking it pure (here’s everything you need to know about the varieties of pisco) we recommend these cocktails to try pisco’s unique flavor:
a) Pisco sour
Peru’s flagship drink is prepared with three ounces of pisco, two ounces of lime juice and one ounce of simple syrup.
Chilcano: A refreshing Peruvian cocktail prepared with pisco, lime juice and ginger ale.
Where to taste the best pisco cocktails?
Lima: El Bolivar, Huaringas, or Ayahuasca.
Cusco: El Museo del Pisco, Huaringas, and República del Pisco.
2. Potato: Queen of Pachamama
Together with ají (chili pepper), the potato – a tuberous crop that comes in various shapes and colors – is another leading star of Peruvian food. Domesticated 8,000 years ago in the Andean region, it has over 3,000 varieties and Peruvians serve it every day together with the most diverse ingredients.
One dish we recommend trying? Causa rellena: Mashed potato with ají amarillo and lime juice stuffed with crab meat, tuna or chicken. Nothing can match its flavor. Here’s the recipe.
3. Ají: The lord of Peruvian spices
Ají is the soul of Peruvian food. With over 50 varieties, ají is the source of scores of dishes on the coast, the highlands, and the jungle, and has always been the leading star of the cultures that inhabited the national territory.
Our recommended Dish? Tricolor tiradito: Fine slices of fish cooked in lime juice and covered with sauces prepared with three different types of ají: ají amarillo, rocoto, and ají limo.
4. Quinoa: The cereal of the Gods
Quinoa, a cereal that grows from sea level to 4,000 meters of altitude, was one of the staple foods of Peru’s pre-Hispanic cultures. Due to its rich protein, iron and magnesium content, and its low production cost, quinoa has been distinguished as one of the products that could alleviate a world food crisis.
Our recommended Peruvian dish with quinoa? Quinotto: Also called “quinoa risotto”, is a dish of the nouvelle Andean cuisine served with shrimp sautéed in butter. You should also try this quinoa salad recipe.
5. Cacao: Makes life sweeter
Cacao is one of the “new” jewels housed by Eastern Peru. Introduced in the Peruvian jungle in the 1990s as an alternative to coca leaf growing, no one could imagine that the environmental conditions of the area would give rise to one of the most exquisite chocolates in the world.
6. Coffee: The king of the jungle
Peruvians have been regular coffee drinkers since the Spanish colonial times. They drink it in the morning, after lunch and also in the evening, before going to sleep. Peru is one of the top global exporters of premium coffee, and its main clients include Germany, United States, the Netherlands, Belgium, and France.
This article has been updated from its original publication in 2018.
Cover photo: Andina
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