The interest in Peruvian cuisine is gaining popularity worldwide. In fact, Peru won the title of World’s Top Culinary Destination in 2017.
Peruvian cuisine is incredibly diverse; its different regions has its own wealth of local produce, recipes and passed down through the generations. And one of the most ancient cuisines in the world is Andina, the cuisine from the Andes. Andina also refers to a dish, an ingredient, or even a lady from the Andes.
ANDINA: The Heart of Peruvian Food: Recipes and Stories from the Andes by Martin Morales
Martin Morales, whose grandmother was an Andina, wanted to homage to her and the female chefs called picanteras who shaped the traditional cuisine into what it is today. From soups to rich stews to raw dishes, Morales captured over 110 recipes in his book, ANDINA: The Heart of Peruvian Food: Recipes and Stories of the Andes.
He traveled the last 15 years throughout the Peruvian Andes to collect traditional cooking methods and culinary inspiration. The dishes he recorded date back to thousands of years. Morales describes the recipes as big-flavored and vibrantly-colored; they include everything from light snacks to flavorful roasts to sweet desserts to hot drinks.
“Andina cuisine is always perfectly balanced and seasonal. If it’s summer, Andina cooking offers us the lightest and zestiest dishes; if it’s winter, the dishes are warming, hearty and filling. Using local ingredients that are both seasonal and local, and a wide variety of ancient cooking techniques, this cuisine is built upon respect for the environment, the land and its people.” — Martin Morales in Andina
Andina Dishes You Will Love
Here are some of the most-loved traditional Andina dishes that the people of Peru have enjoyed for thousands of years:
- Picante de Huevos: Picante de Huevos is a brunch favorite in Andina. These “fiery eggs” are made with panca chili paste, Amarillo chili paste, red pepper, tomatoes, onions, garlic olive oil, tomato puree, cheddar cheese, spring onions, toast slices, and eggs.
- Pesque de Quinua: Pesque de Quinua is a quinoa and cheese pudding that has a texture similar to risotto, only creamier and more luxurious. You will need cooked white quinoa, cream or milk, queso fresco or feta, and cheddar cheese. To add more flavor to this indulgent dish, you need olive oil, garlic cloves, ground cumin, finely chopped mint leaves, and salt and ground pepper.
- Causa Puno: Causa Puno is a purple potato, tuna, and rocoto pepper causa. Causa are cold mashed-potato salads. For this dish, you will need purple potatoes, Amarillo chili paste, lime juice, olive, basil leaves, avocado puree, and salt and freshly ground black pepper. To make the tuna tartare, you will need rocoto tiger’s milk, mayonnaise, and finely chopped tuna fillet.
- El Puchero: El Puchero is a traditional Andina broth. It’s a slow-cooked broth that is wonderfully aromatic. The recipe calls for pork loin, lamb neck fillet, air-dried ham, corn-on-the-cob, celery, carrots, cassava, sweet potato, and green cabbage. It also requires chickpeas that have been soaked overnight and drained, olive oil, onions, garlic, oregano, and salt and ground black pepper.
While you can create these dishes in the comfort of your own home, the best place to enjoy these Andina dishes is to go to the heart of where these delicious recipes originated, the Andes.