Saturday, August 02, 2008

On The Blogs: Peruvian Food Roundup

Since I took a break from blogging, I've missed some recent posts about Peruvian food on other blogs. Thus, this Peruvian food roundup of some recent items that caught my eye...

A while back we wrote this post regarding the food court restaurant called Lima City in Irvine, California. Now, at Monster Munching, elmomonster tells us that Lima City is no more, and its stead, there is now a Peruvian Kitchen.

Sounds like the food is still good. Describing Peruvian Kitchen's lomo saltado, elmomonster (journalist Gustavo Arellano's Edwin Goei's food blog identity) writes:

"I found a seat and flipped open the lid. When I did, a plume of hot steam carrying the aroma of cumin and soy sauce escaped. It smelled exactly right. Then I took a bite and tasted the best saltado I've had since El Pollo Inka in Lawndale."

"The beef wasn't just tender, it melted. Everything that surrounded it -- the fries, the red onion, the tomato -- was wokked and seasoned perfectly. It was flavorful, crisp, and alive.

Even the rice was spot on. Cooked with a hint of chicken broth in a similar manner as Hainan chicken rice, the starch could've functioned as a standalone dish."

Sounds like its worth a trip to south Orange County.

Meanwhile, Fleetvision talks about the recent boom in Peruvian cuisine:

"With the recent addition of Macchu Picchu to the list of 7 Wonders of the World, Peru has been written about in almost every major newspaper over the last twelve months. Suddenly people all over are discovering the culinary delights and cultural richness that only the fortunate few have been relishing for decades. The tourist boom has just begun and just as exciting, the exportation of Peru’s vast menu of food delicacies is on the rise with experts calling it the "best kept food secret". Finally, a new cuisine to replace the old and tired."

Tessa Cruz is a Filipina blogger based in Atlanta who was recently in Peru, and wrote a post titled Pagkaing Peruano (Peruvian Food), with lots of pictures at her blog, Tessa Cruz. We especially liked her photo of alpaca steak, served with a potato terrine, and what looks like a stuffed

Photo: Tess Cruz

Rani, writing from Sydney, reviews La Cocina Peruana, a Peruvian joint Down Under, at Gastranimy, but has mixed feelings about eating
anticuchos, the beef heart skewers:

"I must confess to having waited for everyone else at the table to take a piece of the beef heart from the skewer before I tried it myself, not being a natural aficionado of offal. The texture is quite firm but not chewy in the way that an overcooked piece of steak would be. Again, it is the accompaniment that lifts this entrée from merely being novel meat on a skewer. In a tiny dish next to the skewers is a bright orange ground salsa that offers a big kick of chilli that fades away without taking out the taste buds."

You can read Rani's complete review here.

Writing from Arequipa, monkeyspinner is an avid knitter and wool-spinner currently in Peru to learn new techniques, and blogging about her experiences at Wool in the Flyer.

We liked the pictures she put up of the pumpkin fritters called
picarones, which we wrote about a while back at this link.

We also liked how monkeyspinner described the

"After lunch we went and had a tasty treat and I am grateful to Miguel for it. I think he only tells me about local sweets every few days as he fears I will go into a sugar coma. This was fried yeasted dough ( think similar to a funnel cake but not quite) covered in sugar cane syrup. TASTY. In Lima they make them from pumpkin. Bunuelos? Something like this. I’ll find out. But I had four. There are ladies there who each make them just a tad different so families have their favorite ladies."

There are many people who write blogs while traveling in Peru. One such person is Lisa Patel, who is keeping an online journal at Travel Blog and dedicated an entire post to Peruvian food, aptly titled, On Peruvian Food.

Writing from one of my favorite Peruvian cities, Iquitos in the Amazon rainforest, she tells us:

"Cebiche: I was told that it would be a crime, a shameful and unforgivable crime, to leave the country of Peru without having experienced one of the country's most beloved national foods. Cebiche is a dish of raw seafood--fish, shrimp, and stuffed crab in this particular dish--marinated with fresh onion, garlic, cilantro, and lemon juice, all sitting on top of sweet potato, yuca, potato, and my personal favorite: choclos, a type of corn seed that does not pop upon roasting--rather, the inside becomes soft and crunchy, like pop corn, only more savory and a bit saltier." Of course, she snapped a picture of her ceviche:

Photo: Lisa Patel

She also raves about Amazonian desserts and drinks:

"And the ice cream and juices. Oh sweet fruits of the Amazon--there are the typical flavors--orange, strawberry, banana--but then you have guarana, acerola, camu camu and tons of other fruits that I've never even heard of before. Guarana is one of my favorites--when added to juice, it adds a slightly bitter flavor which perfectly offsets citrus juices such as orange and pineapple."

Finally we came across this post, which mentions a Peruvian food blog, at Zuckervati Missing Links:

"Very neat blog about a guy who goes to Peru and talks about the food you can get in Lima. Our Sales rep is from Peru and promises me a bottle of pisco and a bottle of their local rum when he goes back:

I am a creature of habit, and I have a culinary tradition when arriving in Lima which I have kept during the last few years of travel here. On this trip, I was able to maintain my tradition. After checking into our hotel in the Miraflores district of Lima, we had a stroll around Miraflores' main park, Parque Kennedy, and I picked up the Lima daily, El Comercio, and headed to the Café Haiti, one of the grand old-fashioned Lima cafés to have my first Peruvian meal (lomo saltado and a frothy pisco sour) while people-watching. The waiters are definitely old-school and after so many times there, they know who I am. "In Lima again?" one of the waiters asked me, "Are you ready for your lomo saltado?" You have to love that type of service."

Which guy could that be? Oh, it's me! Until the next time, On The Blogs...

Peruvian food seems to be everywhere these days. On The Blogs is a feature here at Peru Food in which I comment and link to what other bloggers are writing and posting about Peruvian food.

Click here for the Peru Food main page.

TAGS: Peru, Peruvian, food, cooking, cuisine, cocina, comida, gastronomía, peruana


elmomonster said...

Thanks for the mention, but just one correction, I am not Gustavo Arellano. Rather, I'm OC Weekly's other food critic. Guess which one!

::Alejandro:: said...

Thanks for the correction! I hope I got it right this time...

Charles C Stirk Jr said...

Wowzer when you come back you really come back ...

::Alejandro:: said...

@Stirk: jajajajaja! you made me laugh! thanks for the comment...saludos!

Tessa said...

Thanks for featuring my blog and photos! We had a wonderful time in Peru and we hope to come back again. In the meantime, we'll be on the lookout for good Peruvian food here in Atlanta.

::Alejandro:: said...

Thank you, Tessa!

Rani said...

Alejandro I'm glad that my little blog from Oz caught your interest! Its great to see such informative founts of information on specific cuisines like your blog - it sure makes me hungry!! I'll be checking it out in future and taking up some of your suggestions for LA when I'm in town later in the year.

::Alejandro:: said...

Rani, my pleasure. And thanks for the link on your blog. If you want further information when you come to LA, let me know, I'll be happy to help.