Peruvian Ingredients
FRUITS
AGUAYMANTO:
The Aguaymanto (Physalis peruviana) is also known as tomatillo, poha, or alkekengi. This round berry owes its resemblance to a small Chinese lantern for the fine, papery husk that envelops the fruit. When ripe, it is bright yellow-orange in color and boasts a tangy sweetness which is perfect paired with savory dishes featuring fish, red meat, and particularly wild game. The Aguaymanto is also used to make jam, ice-cream, liqueurs, and fermented beverages. The fruit is an excellent source of phosphorus and protein. Its extensive root system serves an important role in protecting hillsides from erosion.
..........................................................................................................................................
CAMU CAMU:
The Camu camu (Myrciaria dubia), is a small (approx. 3-5 m tall) bushy river side tree from the Amazon Rainforest vegetation in Peru and Brazil, which bears a red/purple cherry like fruit. It is a close relative of the the Guavaberry or Rumberry. Camu camu is used mainly for its edible fruits. The fruit is extremely acidic, and the flavour can only be appreciated in recipes requiring a blender, dilution in milk/water and the addition of sugar. The extraordinarily high Vitamin C content (in the order of 2-3% of fresh weight!) is the most important property of the camu camu fruit, which has been exploited consistently in positioning camu camu on international markets. Vit C content declines as full maturity is reached, and there is a trade-off between Vit C and flavour expression. As a myrtaceous fruit, camu camu most likely provides other nutritional benefits (phenolics, etc.,), but these are less understood and communicated to consumers. Camu camu has also a unique aroma and fruit pigmentation. A reddish pigment in the leathery skin imparts an attractive and unique pink color on juices extracted from mandarina.
..........................................................................................................................................
CAPULI:
Capuli (Prunus salicifolia) is a fruit. The capuli does not really belong with the fruits of warm regions, but is a true cherry. It is closely related to the Jamaica cherry, but distinguishable from it. The capulin is often called the capuli or cerezo or wild cherry or black cherry. The Capulin was an important food for the Indians, inhabitants, and the Spanish conquistadors who conquered the new lands of the Americas. At times, the Capulin served as the main food group for the Spanish
..........................................................................................................................................
CHIRIMOYA:
(Annona cherimola) is native to the Andean-highland valleys. The fruit is oval, often slightly oblique, 10-20 cm long and 7-10 cm diameter, with a smooth or slightly tuberculated skin. The fruit flesh is white, and has numerous seeds embedded in it. The tree thrives throughout the subtropics at altitudes of 1300-2600m (4,000-8,500feet). The name derives from Quechua chirimuya, meaning 'cold seeds', since the seeds will germinate at higher altitudes. Though sensitive to frost, it must have periods of cool temperatures or the tree will gradually go dormant. The indigenous inhabitants of the Andes say that although the chirimoya cannot stand snow, it does like to see it in the distance. It is cultivated in many places throughout the Americas, including California, where it was introduced in 1871, and Hawaii. The fruit is fleshy and soft, sweet, white in color, with a custard-like texture, which gives it its secondary name, custard apple. Some characterize the flavor as a blend of pineapple, mango and strawberry. Others describe it as tasting like commercial bubblegum. Similar in size to a grapefruit, it has large, glossy, dark seeds that are easily removed. The seeds are poisonous if crushed open; one should also avoid eating the skin. When ripe the skin is green and gives slightly to pressure, similar to the avocado. Ripe fruit may be kept in the refrigerator, but it is best to let immature chirimoyas ripen at room temperature. If the skin is brown, then it is good to eat and has ripened. Fresh chirimoya contains about 15% sugar (about 60kcal/100g) and some vitamin C (up to 20mg/100g)
..........................................................................................................................................
GRANADILLA:
Is the common name for Passiflora ligularis. It is native to the Andes Mountains. It grows as far south as northern Argentina and as far north as Mexico. It likes climates ranging from 15° to 18° C and between 600 and 1000 mm of annual rain. It lives at altitudes ranging from 1700 to 2600 meters above sea level. The fruit is orange to yellow colored with small light markings. It has a round shape with a tip ending in the stem. The fruit is between 6.5 and 8 cm long and between 5.1 and 7 cm in diameter. The outer shell is hard and slippery, and has soft padding on the interior to protect the seeds. The seeds, which are hard and black, are surrounded by a gelatinous sphere of transparent pulp. The pulp is the edible part of the fruit and has a strong acidic taste. It is very aromatic and contains vitamins A, C, and K, phosphorus, iron and calcium.
..........................................................................................................................................
LUCUMA:
Lucuma fruit (Lucuma obovata H.B.K) is one of the lost crops of the Incas. This fruit isnative to South American Andean regions of Peru. The fruit is very popular among native people. It has a considerable high value and market potential as a flavoring for ice creams. In Peru, there is even a higher demand for Lucuma ice cream than for the commonly consumed strawberry, chocolate and vanilla flavors. Several market investigations have determined the acceptability of this new Lucuma flavor in European and American markets.
..........................................................................................................................................
MARACUYA:
Passiflora edulis or passion fruit is cultivated commercially in different parts of the world. The passion fruit is round to oval, yellow or dark purple at maturity, with a soft to firm, juicy interior filled with numerous seeds. The fruit can be grown to eat or for its juice, which is often added to other fruit juices to enhance aroma. The bright yellow passion fruit can grow up to the size of a grapefruit, has a smooth, glossy, light and airy rind. Uses varies, passion fruit is the most common topping for cake and to make drinks. Passion fruit mouse is a common dessert, and passion fruit seeds are routinely used to decorate the tops of certain cakes. Besides that, it is very common passion fruit juice, also commonly used as an ingredient in a fruit drink containing strained passion fruit juice, sugar and water. It is also eaten fresh and used to flavor things from hard candies to popsicles.
..........................................................................................................................................
PITAJAYA:
Known world-wide as an excellent gourmet fruit, pitajaya possesses medicinal properties that are continually being discovered. Among its many effects, pitajaya helps to regulate the nervous system, corrects stress-induced digestive and renal problems, and aids in the well-being and functioning of the heart due to the presence of Captina. Its high concentration of Phosphorus and Vitamin C contributes to the development of cerebral functions and a strong immune system.
..........................................................................................................................................
TUMBO:
Banana passion fruit is the fruit of several plants in the genus Passiflora, and are therefore related to the passion fruit. They look somewhat like a straight, small banana with rounded ends. The banana passion fruit is native to the Andean valleys. It was domesticated around the time of the Spanish Conquest and today it is commonly cultivated and its fruit are regularly sold in local markets. The vine is grown in California as an ornamental under the name "softleaf passionflower"
..........................................................................................................................................
GRAINS
KIWICHA:
or amaranths (also called pigweeds) It was one of the staple foodstuffs of the Incas, and it is known as kiwicha in the Andes today. It comprises the genus Amaranthus, a widely distributed genus of short-lived herbs, occurring mostly in temperate and tropical regions. It ranges from colors of purple and red to gold. Although there remains some confusion over the detailed taxonomy, there are about 60 Amaranthus species. Several of them are cultivated as leaf vegetables, cereals, or ornamental plants. To this day, amaranth grains are toasted much like popcorn and mixed with honey or molasses to make a treats like power bars, or cereal.
..........................................................................................................................................
MAIZ MORADO:
Purple corn, a variety of corn, is an Andean crop from low valleys locally called "maiz morado". Purple corn can be found mostly in Peru, where it is cultivated both in the coast and in the highlands at ten thousand feet high. There are different varieties of purple corn, and all of them are from an ancestral line called "Kculli", still cultivated in Peru. The Kculli line is very old, and ancient objects in the shape of these particular ears of corn have been found in archaeological sites at least 2,500 years old in places in the central coast, as well as among the ceramics of the "Mochica" culture.
..........................................................................................................................................
MAIZ ROJO:
Also known as "Puca Sara" is the common red maize, of red grain, corneous and semitransparent. Use to prepare chicha and mote, among other uses.
 
..........................................................................................................................................
PERUVIAN CORN:
One of the most widely consumed foods in Peruvian cuisine. This corn has been planted in Peru since 1200 BC. The ancient Peruvian farmers achieved a degree of sophistication in the selection and creation of new varieties which adapted to varying terrains and climates.
 
..........................................................................................................................................
QUINUA:
Quinoa originated in the Andean region of South America, where it has been an important food for 6,000 years. Its name is the Spanish spelling of the Quechua name. Quinoa is generally undemanding and altitude-hardy, so it can be easily cultivated in the Andes up to about 4,000 meters. Even so, it grows best in well-drained soils and requires a relatively long growing season. The Incas, who held the crop to be sacred, referred to quinoa as "chisaya mama" or "mother of all grains", and it was the Inca emperor who would traditionally sow the first seeds of the season using 'golden implements'. During the European conquest of South America quinoa was scorned by the Spanish colonists as "food for Indians", and even actively suppressed, due to its status within indigenous non-Christian ceremonies.
..........................................................................................................................................
TUBERS
OLLUCO:
This species is the most wide spread among the consumers of the coastal region. It is eaten in two ways: fresh and dehydrated. In the latter form is used as "chuño" (tubers are subjected to successive frosts, washing, and then, dried). The product in known as "lingly", "shilgui" and "mallullu".
 
..........................................................................................................................................
PAPA:
Potato (Solanum tuberosum) originated in the highlands of South America, where it has been consumed for more than 8000 years. Spanish explorers brought the plant to Europe in the late 16th century as a botanical curiosity. By the 19th century it had spread throughout the continent, providing cheap and abundant food for the workers of the Industrial Revolution. There are thousands of potato varieties utilized in the Andes today. Especially for the Taste of Peru, we will offer a wide variety of dishes that use Peru’s most important food product, the potato, as its main ingredient. You will be able to appreciate the versatility of the potato and enjoy many creative and delicious potato-based dishes.
..........................................................................................................................................
YUCA:
The root is long and tapered, with a firm homogeneous flesh encased in a detachable rind, about 1 mm thick, rough and brown on the outside. The skinned root must be kept under water until it is ready to be cooked. The root's flavor spoils in a day or so, even if kept unskinned and under refrigeration. A solution is usually to freeze it or seal it in wax. It cannot be consumed raw. Cooked in various ways: as an accompaniment for meat dishes made into purées, dumplings and gnocchi, soups, stews, gravies, etc.. Deep fried (after boiling or steaming), it can replace fried potatoes, with a distinctive flavor. It can also replace wheat flour, and is so-used by some people with allergies to other grain crops. It was, and still is, a major staple food for many native tribes in the tropical parts of the continent, since pre-Columbian times.
..........................................................................................................................................
CHUÑO:
Chuño (chooh-ngyo) is a freeze-dried potato product traditionally made by Quechua and Aymara communities of Peru and Bolivia. The traditional process consist of a five-day process which start by exposing a frost-resistant variety of potatoes to very low night temperatures in the Andean Altiplano, freezing them, and subsequently exposing them to the intense sunlight of the day. The word comes from Quechua ch'uñu, meaning frozen potato. The existence of chuño dates back to before the time of the Inca Empire, based on findings of that have been made of the product at various archaeological sites. Specifically they have been found at Tiwanaku, site of a culture which developed in the Collao Plateau, a geographic zone which includes territories of Peru and Bolivia.
..........................................................................................................................................
TUBERS
TARWI:
(Lupinus mutabilis) is considered the legume of the Andes. It contains certain alkaloids that repel insects. Andean farmers grow tarwi on the borders of their fields to prevent pests from migrating in. The farmers commonly rotate tarwi with potatoes, an agronomic practice whose soundness was borne out when Peruvian researchers showed that a single year of tarwi reduced the levels of nematode worms in the field by 80 per cent. This legume will enrich the soil with nitrogen if it is grown for long enough. Another advantage is that it can use phosphorus in the soil that is not readily available to other plants. Tarwi is therefore less dependent on added phosphate fertilisers.
..........................................................................................................................................
SPICES
AJI AMARILLO (Peruvian Yellow aji chilies):
also known as “Aji Verde” although it can be either red, orange or yellow. Among all the aji kinds, this is the most used in Perú because of its taste and aromatic
 
..........................................................................................................................................
AJI MIRASOL:
Is natural-sun dried “Aji Amarillo”. It can be used as a whole or as powder. To cook with it, use gloves to take out the seeds and then clean them rubbing one to each other.
 
..........................................................................................................................................
AJI LIMO:
It is a small but very spicy and hot aji, which makes it the best aji to make “ceviches” and “tiraditos”. It can be red, yellow, green or purple.
 
..........................................................................................................................................
AJI PANCA:
This aji is big, purple and is dried in the plant. It can be used either as a whole, in powder or paste. Also very popular in Peruvian cuisine which is also known as “aji especial” (special aji)
 
..........................................................................................................................................
OTHERS
CHANCACA:
Also known as molasses, is a sugar byproduct, the brownish liquid residue left after heat crystallization of sucrose (commercial sugar) in the process of refining. Molasses contains chiefly the uncrystallizable sugars as well as some remnant sucrose. Centrifuges are used to drain the molasses off from the sucrose crystals. Molasses is often reprocessed to retrieve more of this remnant sucrose. The better grades, such as New Orleans drip molasses and Barbados molasses—unreprocessed and therefore lighter in color and containing more sucrose—are used in cooking and confectionery and in the production of rum. The lowest grade, called blackstrap, is mainly used in mixed cattle feed and in the manufacture of industrial alcohol. Sugarcane is the major source of molasses; other sugar plants, e.g., the sugar beet, yield inferior types. The name molasses is sometimes applied to syrups obtained from sorghum and the sugar maple. In Great Britain, molasses is called treacle.
..........................................................................................................................................
RECIPES
PHOTO & TESTIMONIALS
VIDEO GALLERY
THE CHEFS
THE RESTAURANTS

Make a Reservation