The History Behind the Most Delicious Peruvian Dishes
Lima has become the gastronomic capital of South America, earning rightfully this tittle these last few years. Peru has been blessed by having 32 micro climates due to its many types of regions where the outstanding are the coast, highlands and amazon; geographically and cultural the differences between these three are thick, but these same differences allowed the gastronomy to flourish as it got mixed and improved over the years.
Lima is the capital and home of 30 million of Peruvians, many families have migrated seeking for better opportunities that they cities could not provide and that had been happening since hundreds of years by now. As a consequence of the interior migrations and extern immigration of the Chinese, Italian and Africans took some time but soon enough dishes like the Lomo Saltado and ceviche emerge and stayed to be part of the rich Peruvian cuisine that nowadays shines all over the world.
By 1897 Peru received its first Chinese immigrants that brought their wok and exotic ingredients. It is said that the first recipes were only made with vegetable but over the years the tenderloin was added and the last but not least ingredient to joined was the potato, and important addition that contribute to provide more Peruvian identity to the dish. Nowadays the Lomo Saltado is served with rice and it is also father of dishes like the “Tallarin Saltado”, “Tacu Tacu con Lomo” and some others.
Is one of the Peruvian national treasures, the history behind has not certainty but some historians said the there was a dish on the Mochicas times (a Pre-Incan culture located in the northern coast) called “siwichi” and it was prepared with raw fish macerated with “Tumbo” (an endemic and acidic fruit of Peru) juice, and when the Spanish arrived the the onions and lemon were added to the new recipe giving birth to the actual recipe. Still, there are a few other theories about the origin of Ceviche, which made hard to define the actual precedence of this delicious dish. Ceviche is served including sweat potato and corn these days.
Aji de Gallina
This delicious dish has its origin back to the XIV century from a Catalan sweet and creamy recipe called menjar blanc, that included hen, rice, sugar, almond and sometimes even milk. When it came to Peru some of the ingredients were replaced for instance the hen for chicken and the almonds for pecans, also the dish become more seasoned and savory, as it was also added the Peruvian yellow pepper. Nowadays this exquisite dish is prepared with chicken, breath, milk, pecan and yellow pepper and is served accompanied by with rice.
Also knowing as Causa Rellena Limeña, and for many it is hard to tell when exactly was originated still many historians believe that has its background in the Pre-Columbian in times with a very basic process where it was prepared with yellow potatoes mixed with little Peruvian yellow pepper. It was when the Spanish arrived that lemon was included to the recipe originating the Causa that we know now. Still, the filling of this dish has many variants today, such us chicken, tuna and seafood but the based ingredient has remained the same yellow potatoes, yellow pepper and lemon.