Most Peruvian cuisine is centred on the native aji chilli pepper.
Add to this a unique mix of ingredients from one of the world’s most biodiverse nations and a 500-year fusion of pre-Colombian, Inca, Spanish, Arab, African, Chinese, Japanese and Italian cuisines and you have a gastronomy that is nothing if not distinctive.
Ceviche is Peru’s best-known dish: a mouthwatering combination of fresh raw fish marinated in lemon juice and spiced with aji chilli peppers. Other seasonings such as red onion, coriander and salt and pepper can be added. On the side, glazed sweet potato and Peruvian sweetcorn.
Lomo saltado is stir-fried beef strips with onion and tomato. It is served with white rice and chips.
Aji de gallina is a chicken stew with a spicy, creamy and nutty sauce made from aji chilli paste, cheese and pecan nuts. It is Peruvian comfort food and takes a long time to prepare. Everyone claims their mother’s version is the best. Served with white rice, yellow potatoes and boiled eggs.
Papa a la huancaina is boiled yellow potatoes served with aji chilli paste, crushed crackers
and cheese cooked down into a smooth sauce, served with a boiled egg. —