3 Tasty Tips For Ordering Peruvian Food

Posted on: 5 April 2017

Food is an important part of Peruvian culture, and Peruvian chefs take great pride in expertly preparing their native dishes. That's why you can be sure of getting an enjoyable meal when you visit an authentic Peruvian restaurant, such as Inka Grill. Peruvian food is becoming more and more popular, but the surge of interest in it is relatively recent, so you may not have tried Peruvian food before and may be unsure about what to order and how to order it. Take a look at some tips that will help you order Peruvian dishes like a pro.

Ask for Leche de Tigre With Ceviche

Even if you're a newcomer to Peruvian cuisine, the one dish that you may have heard of is ceviche. Ceviche is Peru's national dish, and it is particularly prized in Lima, Peru's capital and largest city. The dish is marinated sea bass served with sweet potato and boiled corn, with some dry roasted corn sprinkled around the dish to add crunch.

To eat ceviche like a native, ask the server to bring you leche de tigre with it. Leche de tigre, or tiger's milk, is essentially runoff from the sea bass marinade. It contains lime juice, onion, salt, hot chiles, and fish juice. Some chefs add a bit of pureed fish or even a small amount of milk to give it a creamier consistency. A shot of tiger's milk is thought to boost energy, and it has a spicy, briny, umami flavor that complements the dish. You can ask for it to be spiked with pisco, a Peruvian brandy, if you like. When served with pisco, leche de tigre may be called leche de pantera, or panther's milk.

Order Huancaina on the Side

Huancaina is a simple cheese sauce that's made with aji amarillo peppers. It's often served over potatoes in a dish called papas a la huancaína, but it's delicious with other potato dishes (Peru is famous for its many varieties of potatoes and corresponding variety of potato recipes), as well as over rice. It also makes a good dipping sauce for crackers or chips. Ask for a bowl of it, and enjoy it with your potato or rice sides or appetizers.

Request Arroz Con Leche Classical for a Double Treat

Arroz con leche is a type of pudding that is often served as a dessert. It's a sweet and creamy dish that is made with rice and sweetened milk. It can be served by itself, but if you order arroz con leche classical, you'll get a special treat—equal parts arroz con leche and mazamorra morada, a sweet Limeña dish made from purple cornstarch, cinnamon, cloves, diced apples, and apricots. The dish is a deep purple and is similar in consistency to porridge.

Mazamorra morada can be served separately, like the arroz con leche, but the two flavors complement each other well, and ordering them together gives you a more complex and rewarding flavor to end your meal with.

Knowing how to order can help ensure that you enjoy your first foray into Peruvian cuisine. Give it a try, and you'll be glad you took a chance on some new flavors.