Cooking Experiments and Peruvian Food


Good Morning Internet!

By some random, weird combination of events, both bad and good, I have NO class today. I blame this on a combination of winter break and cancelling privates. So, I can either whine about being poor and how this is not good for my income-OR-I can take a legit day off and enjoy it. Doing the latter while pumping some Pipettes.

The last few weeks I’ve done  few experiments in the kitchen. Some turned out fabulous, other failed….miserably.

The first cooking adventure was buying fresh fish at the local market up the street. I bought reineta (pomfret) because Amanda recommended it as a good, local fish. It looks like this:

They skinned and de-boned it right at the cart counter and I took my prize home, wrapped in newspaper. Unfamiliar with the fish, I made a safe bet that it would be good with lemon. So, I did a quick and fast cornmeal crust with cornmeal, salt, oregano, and pepper and baked it for about 20-40 minutes at 350. When it was done, I squeezed a generous amount of lemon on top, and served with with sauteed spinach and tomatoes, and put it over a bed of rice. It was delicious, but I’d love some more yummy reineta recipe recommendations!

For my next experiment, I tried to create a sort of eggplant lasagna situation. It looked beautiful, but tasted awful!

Confusing.

I simply sliced eggplant and layered it with tomatoes, spinach and cheese and topped with with olive oil and balsamic and baked it.

So what went wrong?

The eggplant wasn’t totally cooked, no matter what I did, and tasted bitter. It just wasn’t right! Should I soak the eggplant? Cook it longer? Not stack it like that?

Dunno.

Frustrated with my own cooking efforts, I decided to “GASP” go out to eat! I went with Amanda to my favorite Peruvian restaurant across the street called Casa del Chef.

Yeah, I’ll admit it, Peruvian food rules. Chile has some culinary contributions, but Peruvian food hits it home with the SAUCES. For example, in my favorite dish, Aji de Gallina (shredded chicken in a sweet and savory walnut, cream, spice sauce)

It is served with rice or papas fritas.

The ceviches at this place rule. Last time, Amanda and I split a delicious ceviche de corvina (sea bass) and this time Amanda ordered tiradito (thinly sliced fish, sort of like sashimi) that came in two exquisite aji sauces (yellow and red). Amazing! I can’t wait to go to Peru and dive into the food scene head first. So. Amazing.

Also, happy 4 month anniversary to me in Chile! Still, here, still alive and with a temporary residency Visa! Woo!

Here’s to more fun-filled Chilean and South American adventures and to taking risks! I’ve found this whole experience has really taught me a lot about adaptability, facing fears, and taking life my the horns. Life doesn’t wait for you. Time is a fickle mistress and if you put off all the fun things til later, they may never happen. The more I travel, I realize the world just isn’t that big and there is a lot to see.

Until next time, here’s to good food and good friends.
Salud!

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1 Comment

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One response to “Cooking Experiments and Peruvian Food

  1. DArling daughter. The peruvian food looks delicioso. Eggplant – slice it, slat it, wipe off the sweat the forms after several (7-10?) minutes. That’s the bitter part. The put some loive oil on it and roast it in 400 degree oven until tender THEN make cool sandwich out of it. THat’s my best idea…

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