Peruvians are one of the ten largest Latino population groups (making up more than half a million people) in the U.S., according to the Pew Hispanic Center. According to a CUNY Study, Florida ranks 2nd in having the largest population of Peruvians. That might explain why Peruvian food has found its way in to the Real Food Real Kitchens world twice in the past few months.
First we traveled south to Gloria Estefans beach resort Costa D'Este where the resorts Chef Estremera, Peruvian, shared a family ceviche with us. The second time was just last week when another Peruvian ceviche was entered in the to the first Real Food Real Kitchens Cook Off. How's that for being spot on?
This colorful food is full of the many flavors that make up it's past: Andean, Spanish, Japanese, Chinese, African and Italian. With all that goodness packed in to one punch it's no wonder Americans are finally seeing the brilliance in Peruvian food. The three traditional staples of Peruvian cuisine are corn, potatoes, and chili peppers which were used in combination with the gastronomic influences of all the immigrants who first came to Peru. If you can't make the trip to South America, try a trip to the southern state of America, Florida or maybe one of over the 100 Peruvian restaurants in New York's Tri-State area. Be sure to try the Top 10 Things to Eat in Peru (according to the National Geographic): ceviche (raw fish in citrus juice), cuy (guinea pig), causa (potatoes and avacados), lomo saltado (hybrid stir-fry, in which beef, tomatoes, peppers, and onions), aji de gallina (a yellow pepper), anticuchos (skewers of grilled marinated meat), rocoto relleno (a spicy red pepper stuffed), alpaca (like a camel), lucuma (a tree fruit that tastes like maple syrup), and pollo a la brasa (Peruvian styled chicken).
And the final ingredient in the Peruvian foodie trend is that Frommer's picked Lima, Peru as their Top Food & Drink Destination of 2012 for their “cultural miscegenation - a rich stew of Spanish, African, Chinese and Japanese - is reflected in its culinary fusion” which could explain why the capital city has become a destination for food-focused tourists.
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by Craig Chapman