AJI DE GALLINA
U see this plate everywhere like a “national dish”. Nothing else but a ragu of chicken – it should be like a curry – with hot spicies but we never met anything like this. Aji means chilli pepper – and the color is a bit “too yellow”. They invented this for a european stomach for sure – no surprise. The garnish is hard boiled egg and kalamata olives. If u are lucky u can find some crunchy walnut hiding in the sauce – really good touch.
p.s.: this dish has a weird part – u do not cook the chicken “in the sauce” like i would do, they cook the chicken (breast) in water first then pulled the meat into pieces and mix in the sauce.
Guinea pig… yes… it is small. Served whole with its eyes and teeth. Usually coming suntanned-roasted from the oven but can be deep fried also. Very creepy but popular in Bolivia (we believe that locals keep it on the menu just for the tourists).
NEVER ENDING SOUPS
Soups are pretty good in general – Gigi was in love with the quinoa version – she had a week when did not eat anything else basically. One type is super simple – a chicken stock base with quinoa and vegetables. As u are getting closer to the ocean – the soup is getting more and more complicated. And by complicated i mean sh*t lots of ingredients.
One of the most popular dish was “chupe de camarones” which is a rich shrimp chowder added extra rice, potato, eggs, beans, choclo… and whatever the chef finds in the kitchen i guess… hehe. As the price shows – u dont need to order another main course. (footnote: again, they keep this plate for tourist cause in lots of places fishing ·camarones· is forbidden nowadays but they do for money)
This edible grain corp originated in the Andean region of Peru, Bolivia, Ecuador and Colombia. Superhealthy stuff, contains essential amino acids, rich in protein and dietary fibre, minerals and nutrients. It is special cause it grows in a high altitude between 2500 and 4000 meters. In South America is still cheap – not like in Europe where people just starting to realize how good is it (much more better then pasta or rice) especially in a part of a vegetarian or vegan diet.
Ok… can u imagine a better thing then freshly fried doughnut?¿ Yes, i can. When it made with pumpkin and sweet potato puree. No more comment. Yum Yum.
The dessert of our childhood. Everyone·s Mum can make the best. Rice pudding with an extra touch – using a special sauce (chancaca) of caramelized sugar and orange peel with other spicies like cinnamon, clove, pepper. Serve it with a touch of pecan nuts or for some more sugar – u get a spoonful of Mazamorra on the side (this is a jelly made of red corn, fruits and sweet potato flour).
Best out of leftover stuff. Its got 2 main ingredients, one is rice from the day before, the other is cooked/baked beans. After this basically u mix with everything else what u find in your fridge making dumplings or tortilla shape what u can fry after all to have nice and crispy skin (i saw this criolla dish only in Lima). Usually served with a massive steamed beef steak and a sunny side up.
South American cuisine mixed with Chinese. (popular plato is the “arroz chaufa” which is kindof stir-fry rice)
Everyone knows Coca Cola right? Well… this has nothing to do with it. I am absolut against any type of cola (however i was strongly addicted as a child) especially this sparkling tutti-frutti bubblegum flavoured neon-colored liquid. We did buy one to try (there are other “kola-brothers”) and after to sip it landed in the bin. Please dont waste your money. Heh.
“Inca Kola is a source of national pride and patriotism in Peru, a national icon.” – well, it does say everything about Peru at these days.
WHAT THE PUFF??¿¿??
Bolivia. Market. Bags. Big bags. Massive big bags. Full with something and it looks like the puff used when u are sending something by post in a box and u fill the rest of the space with his light “dontknowhowdoesitcalled” puff. The biggest surprise came when we saw that people were actually eating this stuff. Coming closer to the stands… still having no clue. I had to ask.
They are selling puffed cereals… like corn, wheat… then cooked-fried and puffed pasta (have no f*ckin clue how…) in different sizes from macaroni to canelon… and they all sugared so sweet. Hm. I am big fan of nuts but this… very interesting empty calories.