While in Lima I went on a Lima Gourmet Company tour.
We started with a viewing of organic Peruvian coffee beans that were individually hand sorted at a traditional roastery.
My new favorite fruit lucuma. Can’t really describe the flavor but in smoothies, paddle pops or ice cream it tastes like caramel. The lucuma smoothies we had at the Secret Garden café in Barranco district, the Bohemian district of Lima, were addictive and set me on a search for all things lucuma.
Dominated by a huge century old lucuma tree, the quaint little café is set in the refurbished maid’s quarters of a now demolished mansion. Unfortunately many of the old colonial buildings have now disappeared to make way for modern buildings. However there are still many wonderful examples of this architecture being lovingly restored.
A visit to the San Isidro market where we had generous tastings of many exotic rainforest fruits—the cleanest and best organized market you could imagine. Even the floors were spotless white glazed tiles.
We visited Embarcadero 41 the original Ceviché restaurant by Gaston Acurio, Peru’s most famous gourmet restauranteur,in a refurbished garage. This has led to many small ceviché restaurants set up by hopefuls in disused garages hoping to ride on the coat tails of Gaston’s success.
While there we had lessons in making Pisco Sours, Peru’s most famous drink.
3 measures of Pisco
1 measure of egg white,
1 measure of lemon
1measure of sugar syrup
Place in a cocktail shaker with ice and shake like mad
Serve with exactly three drops of bitters
A very potent drink drunk at every opportunity!
We also made and ate our own ceviche, Peru’s national dish. This dish reflects the coastal nature of the country and is basically cubes of raw white flesh fish “cooked” in lime juice with chillis and raw finely cut Spanish onions. By custom, it is only served for lunch because eating it any later means “the fish has been out of the sea too long”
Finally, (after all this food!) we went for a Gourmet Peruvian lunch & desert amid pre-Incan ruins at la Huaca Pucllana including the obligatory Pisco sours. We finished with a tasting tray of four traditional deserts.
Definitely a tour worth doing for the Travelling Foodie.