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Peruvian cuisine is a delight for food lovers who find it exciting to experience another culture’s cooking. With Peruvian food, you’re in luck, because this is one country that does not disappoint when it comes to gastronomy!
Fans of Japanese sushi might just be surprised to learn that Japan is not the only country that enjoys raw fish—indeed, Peru has arguably the tastiest raw seafood dish going around in its Ceviche. If the word ceviche sounds exotic, tasty, and a little bit fancy, then that’s because it most certainly is (although you won’t be paying through the roof to enjoy it). Peru’s ceviche is a raw fish dish similar to sashimi, except that it’s cured in fresh lime juice and usually topped with onion, chilli, and salt. It’s high in protein, low in fat, and immensely satisfying without the Tokyo price tag. Just the kind of dish you want when you’re exploring the country’s most famous sight: Machu Picchu!
Another dish that is a common staple for Peruvians, but actually exciting for first-time travellers, is Peru’s king-sized, juicy corn known as Choclo. Choclo, also known as Cusco Corn, is a type of white field corn from the Andes that’s more chewy than regular corn, and delicious on its own as a side dish when served with melted cheese. Choclo is rarely found outside of the South American continent, and while not as fancy as the aforementioned ceviche, it’s actually a delicious accompaniment to a unique and delicious kind of meat: Alpaca!
Sweet, tender, and juicy, alpaca can be found in many Peruvian restaurants as a steak, diced up with vegetables in a hearty dish, and also in a burrito—which, for many travellers, has been a big hit! This writer, in fact, has longed for the days when he can eat another alpaca burrito in Cusco, before summiting the nearby mountains, only to finish the day with Peru’s most famous drink: the Pisco Sour.
The Pisco Sour is world-famous but often hard to find, so if you’re going to try it anywhere, Peru is really the only place worth doing it! The delicious cocktail packs a punch, and is made with a local brandy known as pisco, that is then complemented with a dash of fresh, citrusy lemon or lime, and a sweet sugar syrup to help balance the brandy. Nobody makes a Pisco Sour like the Peruvians, and it’s an especially nice drink to end the day with while looking out over the local sunset—and especially after a day out hiking through one of Peru’s adventurous mountains.
If a food tour through Peru is something you’ve been dreaming about (and let’s be honest—who hasn’t!), then check out Valencia Travel Cusco’s Taste of Peru Experience and Traditional Lunch half-day tour, or the Lima Market Tour, Fruit Tasting and Cooking Class.