Where Does Peruvian Cuisine Originate From?
Peru is located in South America and shares borders with Ecuador, Colombia, Brazil, Bolivia, and Chile. The country is divided into 3 topographical areas: coastal region, the Amazon rainforest to the east, and the Andean highlands. The different climates and local ingredients within them create unique flavors in the dishes that are created around them.
History of Authentic Peruvian Food
Scientists believe that the first inhabitants of Peru migrated around 6000 B.C. These early nomadic tribes relied on hunting and gathering in order to feed their members. Most of the early settlers built communities near the coast as the climate there and proximity to the waterways made it ideal for cultivation.
The potato, one of the most common vegetables in the world now, was first grown in Peru! It wasn’t until the 1400’s that the first Europeans first came into contact with this starch and it finally spread throughout Europe and eventually spread all throughout the world.
It wasn’t until the Spanish conqueror Francisco Pizarro discovered Peru that food items such as chicken, pork, and lamb were introduced to the Incas. In return, the Spanish were introduced to the potato and all the rich varieties that were grown there.
Once the Spanish established control over Peru, they made the natives grow European crops. Unfortunately, as with most encounters in those early days, the disease struck the Inca’s with the new germs they came into contact with when the Spanish arrived. A shortage of labor ensued, and so slaves from Africa were brought over to keep the production of food stable.
The Africans brought their culture as well and introduced foods such as fried pumpkin pastries. Over time people from other cultures came into contact with Peru as well, such as the Polynesians, Chinese, and the Japanese.
This Mixture has led to a rich and flavorful cuisine that is well loved today.
Distinguishing Factors of Peruvian Cuisine
As you will come to find at our it is important to take a look back into the history of Peruvian cuisine and what makes it unique and exciting on its own, Peruvian food consists mostly of spicy dishes which most often feature chili. Other popular spices used to give dishes a stronger flavor are mint, oregano, basil, parsley, cilantro and a variety of others. Other popular staples are the use of fish, beans, potatoes, and a variety of grains.
Because of the very diverse 3 topographical areas, the diversity found within Peruvian food is quite dramatic. The Pacific Ocean to the west provides a rich array fo seafood which reflects in the cuisine of that region. The mountainous region is the perfect place to grow grains and a variety of meats. In the area of Peru that lies within the rainforest, typical dishes will include fruits, vegetables, plantains, yucca and tropical fish and game.
To taste some of our traditional dishes at our Peruvian Restaurant in Brickell (locate din Miami, FL), make a reservation today: https://www.opentable.com/1111-peruvian-bistro-reservations-miami?restref=213790