A Delicious and Historic Dish from Peru
Anticucho is a popular Peruvian dish that is loved by locals and visitors alike. The dish is made up of small pieces of meat that are skewered and grilled over an open flame. The most common type of meat used in anticuchos is beef heart, but other types of meat such as chicken, pork, and even seafood can also be used.
The history of anticucho goes back to the Inca Empire, where it was a popular food among the nobility. During the colonial era, the dish became popular among the lower classes and was often sold on the streets as a cheap and filling meal. Today, anticuchos are a staple of Peruvian cuisine and can be found at many street vendors, restaurants, and even in upscale dining establishments.
One of the key elements that make anticucho unique is the marinade used to flavor the meat. The marinade typically includes vinegar, cumin, garlic, and aji panca, a type of Peruvian chili pepper. The meat is marinated for several hours to allow the flavors to permeate the meat, resulting in a delicious and tender dish that is bursting with flavor. Anticuchos are often served with boiled potatoes or corn on the cob, which helps to balance out the richness of the meat. In some parts of Peru, anticuchos are also served with a spicy peanut sauce or aji amarillo sauce, which adds a tangy and slightly sweet flavor to the dish.
Despite its popularity, making good anticuchos is not as easy as it may seem. The meat must be sliced thinly and marinated for the right amount of time to ensure that it is both tender and flavorful. Additionally, the skewers must be carefully placed over the flames to ensure that the meat is evenly cooked and does not burn.
In Peru, anticuchos are not only a delicious food but also a cultural tradition. They are often sold at street fairs and festivals, where they are enjoyed by locals and visitors alike. In fact, the largest anticucho festival in the world is held in Lima, Peru, every year, where vendors compete for the title of the best anticucho in the city. The Anticucho, with its unique marinade and tender meat, it is a dish that is loved by all who try it. Whether you are in Peru or trying it at a local Peruvian restaurant, be sure to savor every bite of this flavorful and cultural delicacy.
Here's a recipe for Anticucho…
- 1 lb beef heart or sirloin steak, cut into 1-inch cubes
- 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tablespoon ground cumin
- 1 tablespoon paprika
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- Salt and black pepper, to taste
- Wooden skewers, soaked in water for 30 minutes
- In a large bowl, mix together the red wine vinegar, vegetable oil, minced garlic, ground cumin, paprika, dried oregano, salt, and black pepper. Stir until well combined.
- Add the beef heart or sirloin steak cubes to the marinade, making sure that all of the meat is evenly coated. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and marinate in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours, or overnight for best results.
- Preheat your grill to high heat. Thread the meat cubes onto the soaked wooden skewers, leaving a little bit of space between each piece of meat.
- Grill the skewers for 3-4 minutes per side, or until the meat is browned and slightly charred on the outside and cooked to your desired level of doneness.
- Serve the Anticuchos hot, garnished with chopped cilantro or parsley and a squeeze of fresh lime juice.
Enjoy your delicious and authentic Peruvian Anticuchos!