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Gastronomy

The future of the international cooking has to deal with Peru. Ferran Adria, El Bulli

The cuisine is beautifull, the best synthesis of Perú is its gastronomy. The cuisine is not something to be commented on, it is something to be experienced and enjoyed. It is a real pleasure which is part of our life. As an Art, Gastronomy is surely the expression of delicacy and the best reward for a human being. The taste is the most important sense for some people.

The Peruvian gastronomy is a way of life for the Peruvian people. It must be the most beautifull creation of this territory, made of a mix of identities, reflexion of this cultural mosaic.

According to professionals, peruvian food is one of the most diverse in the world, with its different dishes : 491, reaching the French, Chineese or Indian food level, according to Mr La Regnière. For him, this cuisine deserves to be in the Guiness book for its variety, quanity and quality.

In the Peruvian gastronomy, we find around 5000 years of Pre-Inca, Colonial and Republican History. 3 centuries of Spanish contribution, (influenced by the arabic culture), the gastronomic usues brought by the African slaves and the French chefs. We can also find Chineese, Japaneese and Italian touches (that emigrated to Peru during the 19th and the 20th century and other European populations).

One of the main features of Peruvian gastronomy is to gather in one place dishes and favours from the 4 continents, since the middle of the 19th century.

Peruvian Culinary Arts is in constant change, and because of the large range of products, it’s hard to make a list. We can find more tan 1500 different soups in the Peruvian Coast, and 250 different desserts.

The variety of the Peruvian gastronomy can be summarized in 3 points :

  • Peru special geographic features,
  • Mix of species and cultures,
  • The old cuisine adaptation with the mordern one.

However, those products allow peru to offer a nice and diverse cuisine, with a mix of regional traditions and creation. Peru is considered as the world Genetic center for its variety of food. We can find :

  • Potatoes come from Peru. We grow nowadays 4000 kind of potatoes. The Wold Potatoes Genetic Conservation and Searching Center is in Peru. Its was previously introduced in Spain and Great Britain at the end of the 16th century, and became fastly a typical meal. In Europe, it was an animal food until the scientist Antoine Parmentier shown the interest of potatoes for humans.
  • There are 2016 kind of Sweet potatoes, and 65% of the world production is made in Peru.
  • Pimento comes from Peru, but is in every country of the world thanks to the Spanishes and Portugeeses. It is known for its vitamins. There are some varieties that only grow in Peru : capsicum baccatum (yellow), and capsicum pubescens (red).
  • Tomatoe. The actual studies seem to proove that tomatoes come from Peru. That fruit was at the same time in Mexico (its name comes from Mexico).
  • 650 fruits species come from Peru.
  • Bananas, a lot were imported from Africa.
  • Chirimoya, from Peru, is a Green-peel fruit and has a sugar-like jucy pulp, The doctor Fernando Cabieses Molina, famous for his studies about food and medicine in Peru, says that “it’s a fruit that doesn’t need any other food to eat with, no need to proove it”.
  • The lucuma, as well as the cachimán, is an extraordinary fruit from Peru, with an intense flavour, and that is used for centuries in candies and ice creams.
  • We can find 2000 spieces of fishes, from the sea or the river (1st place of the world).
  • Tarwi (or «chochos»), proteins-rich.
  • The corn comes from the whole Central America and came to Europe fastly in the animals’s food, and then in many forms, until it becames essential in every tables.
  • We find so much more food, like pimiento, condiments, different roots.
  • During the exchanges between Africa and Asia, fruits like bananas and lemons were imported.
  • Many other ancestral cultures exist, and are still used (like the astronaut food). That’s the case of kaniwa and kiwicha. We can find in Peru edible food from the forest as elderberry, camu (Vitamin C rich), or Yacon (recommanded when diabetes), and cat claws, famous for its property against cancer.

To conclude, Peru is a gastronomic destination that worth the best palates.