Peru has earned a reputation for having one of the best cuisines in South America and this weekend I learned that for myself.
On the invitation of family members, I visited a lovely woman who lived in Lima, Peru with her husband and three small daughters for five years during the 1960s while her husband worked on a nutrition project. During her time in Peru, Mrs. Placko learned how to prepare many dishes that have come to be favorites in her family.
In this short clip, Mrs. Placko is assisted by a KidCulture chef in preparing lomo saltado, a beef stir fry that is eaten throughout Peru.
In addition, Mrs. Placko made delicious potatoes that accompany most Peruvian meals as well as a fantastic salad known as causa. Causa resembles the French salade nicoise but it is topped with an olive oil and onion dressing that is unlike anything I’d ever eaten. Causa is also well-loved for its mashed potato balls.
For dessert, we feasted on flan and alfajores (you might remember them from our Christmas Cookie extravaganza).
Here are some pictures to make your mouth water.
Photo courtesy of latina.com
Peruvian cuisine is known as one of the best in South America. Its influences range from the indigenous people to immigrants from Spain, Italy, China, Japan, and West Africa.
Peru’s traditional staples are corn, beef, and potatoes. You could easily add potatoes to this recipe, from Cooking the South American Way, to incorporate all of those foods.
Peruvian Beef Stew
3 tbsp. vegetable oil
2 medium onions, chopped
1 ½ lb. round steak, cubed
2 tsp. paprika
1 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. garlic powder
¼ tsp. red pepper flakes
1 tsp. salt
¼ c. white wine vinegar
2 c. beef bouillon
2 c. squash, peeled and cut into ½-inch pieces
1 c. frozen peas
1 c. frozen corn
3 sprigs parsley
Heat oil in a pan and sauté onions.
Add meat and brown well, about 20 minutes. Add all spices, the vinegar, and the beef bouillon. Bring to a boil, stirring to mix well. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer about 45 minutes. Add squash, cover, and simmer for 20 minutes. Add peas and corn and heat thoroughly. Garnish with parsley.