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All you should know about the products you tasted in your Food Tour in Lima:

 

 

Sacha Tomato:

Also called ‘tree tomato’ belongs to the tropical Solanaceae family, it is a plant native to the Peruvian Andes dispersed in other countries of the Andean region, and also in Africa, Australia, India and New Zealand. It is frequently grown in high dry climate zones (3,000 to 9,000 meters above sea level). It has great vitamin, mineral and nutritional contributions to the body. Due to its high fiber content, it helps to improve the digestive process and the correct digestion of fats. To maintain and take advantage of all the properties and benefits that this fruit brings, it must be consumed raw and fresh. It is also used in desserts, juices and recipes to make chili peppers and sauces.

Lucuma:

It is one of the most popular fruits of Peru, for its exquisite flavor and aroma, with a thin  green skin and intense yellow flesh, floury texture, and a soft consistency. Its origin comes from the Peruvian Interandean valleys where it was widely consumed by the Incas. It is cultivated in the low mountains, but it thrives very well practically from sea level to 3,000 meters. It is a powerful antioxidant. The orange-yellow color of its pulp indicates that lucuma is a fruit high in beta-carotene, a perfect antioxidant and the main source of vitamin A. This is an essential element for our skin, since it participates in numerous vital processes such as regeneration and cell growth It reduces cholesterol level. Lucuma because of its vitamin B3 content helps reduce the level of cholesterol and triglycerides in the blood.

Yacon:

Yacon is an edible tuber similar in appearance to a sweet potato and covered by a rough, semi-thick and red-brown skin. Yacon is a domesticated plant in the Andes, in the humid mountains of Peru and Bolivia. There are phytomorphic representations in the Nazca culture (500-1200d C.) attributed to the Yacon, which are represented in textiles and ceramics. In addition to the edible part of yacon, the leaves also have medicinal properties, as they have hypoglycemic properties. This means that when you take a mate from the yacon leaves, you can reduce the concentration of glucose in the blood. That way, diabetic people feel relief when they drink this tea because glucose is reduced in concentration. The edible roots of yacon contain inulin, a non-digestible sugar, which means it has no sweet value and is not assimilated by human metabolism. That is why yacon can be consumed by people with diabetes. This sugar, which passes without metabolizing, is used in the large intestine by bacteria for its metabolism, so yacon sugar helps increase the microflora found in the last part of the large intestine. These bacteria allow to regulate other bacteria that are responsible for the rotting of the waste found in the large intestine. It is said that thanks to the bifidobacteria stimulated by the consumption of yacon there will be fewer toxins and consequently fewer risks of colon cancer.

 

Sweet Lima:

Citrus has existed for 20 million years and its origin is in Southeast Asia, Persia (Iran), Malaysia. From there during the Middle Ages and with the crusades they reached Spain and North Africa. Since then they have spread throughout the world and have evolved in many different ways, leaving many varieties. Its fleshy pulp is divided into very juicy and refreshing segments. Its flavor is between acid and sweet, depending on the variety. Lime is more aromatic and fragrant than lemon, but its juice is less concentrated. Lime fruit has a unique aroma that differentiates it from other citrus fruits. When buying them we must have an account, that they are heavy because that means they have more juice. It helps to burn fat and for its low caloric value it is excellent for slimming diets. The files contain 94% water, carbohydrates and no fiber. It is excellent for slimming diets because it is very low in calories and due to the citric acid it contains.

 

 

Tumbo:

The tumbo is a fruit of the inter-Andean valleys, ideal for summer because it is moisturizing, low in calories, but rich in minerals and vitamins, as well as its therapeutic properties against kidney stones, urinary discomforts and stomach pains, among others medical The pre-Columbian cebiche used the juice of tumbo, a citrus fruit native to Peru, which grows both in the coast, mountains and jungle. The Quechua word Siwichi, which translates as fresh fish, is considered the origin of the word cebiche. The word “seviche” comes from “Siwichi” which is a Quechua terminology that translates as fresh or tender fish. Throughout the evolution of our star dish, the ceviche, there was one that did not use lemon if they were not macerated with tumbo. In the essence of this fruit grown in the Andean valleys, raw fish was submerged. The Mochica seated on the north coast of Peru opted for this culinary practice. It was the Spaniards who brought the lemon and onion. The production areas are located from 1,000 to 3,500 meters above sea level, preferably in the Ancash, Junín, Moquegua, Huancavelica regions. It requires weather with highly wet and dry seasons, with greater success in inter-Andean valleys. It has a high content of vitamins C. It is recommended to maintain skin’s health, eliminating wrinkles and facial blemishes and helping to recover elasticity.

Avocado finger:

It is a tropical and exotic fruit in the form of a thick finger with a soft texture and delicate flavor. It is not a variety since it does not have a seed due to a malformation due to the absence of pollination of the avocado flower, mostly of the Fuerte variety (although in smaller quantities in other varieties such as Hass or Bacon). It has the same properties as a regular avocado. The avocado content includes a wide variety of nutrients, including 20 vitamins and minerals, which makes it a Peruvian superfood among fruits and vegetables.

The most common use is to consume it naturally in salads, stuffed, but also lightly cooked and pureed.

 

Aguaymanto:

It is a 100% Peruvian fruit, native to the Andes and contains an abundant concentration of The aguaymanto, scientific name (Physalis peruviana) belongs to the Solanaceae family, therefore, it has similar characteristics to the potato, tomato and tobacco family, even though its growth is shrubby. A native of the Peruvian Andes, aguaymanto has been known as a native fruit since the time of the Incas. It was one of the preferred plants of the garden of the nobles and was particularly cultivated in the Sacred Valley of the Incas. At present it has conquered important markets in the European Union and the United States. Its main consumers are England and Germany. Apart from Peru, this fruit is also grown in Ecuador, California, South Africa, Australia, Kenya, India, Egypt, the Caribbean, Asia and Hawaii. With a good amount of iron, phosphorus and carbohydrates, this small fruit with a rich flavor and aroma concentrates a large amount of antioxidants, which helps minimize cell aging and the onset of cancer. In addition, it is characterized by being an excellent source of provitamin A, 6 times more than tomatoes and vitamin C with levels very close to the amounts present in orange. Its consumption is recommended for people with diabetes of all kinds. Thanks to its diuretic attributes, it is essential in the treatment of people with prostate problems. In Peru, the production areas of aguaymanto are Ancash, Cuzco, Ayacucho and Cajamarca. At present, more than 50% of aguaymanto exports go to the United States and Germany markets.

 

Chapana:

Peruvian dessert made from cassava or cassava (tuber). The Chapana whose name comes from the Quechua word “Chapuni” which means “to knead”, is a dessert that is eaten cold, and is another of the contributions of African immigrants to our cuisine. Its origins date back to the pre-Columbian era, it is typical of the Coast, especially in the province of Chincha (south of Lima), which is the capital of Afro-Peruvian culture. It has high nutritional value and is highly recommended for gluten intolerant people. This dessert is very simple to prepare, in short, to make Chapana we just have to grind cassava, sweeten it with honey or chancaca (panela in other countries), flavor with anise, cinnamon and cloves and then cook it wrapped in banana leaves.

Pacae:

Quechua pakay or paqay ‘hide’ Pacae is a native species, native to Peru, one of the findings that demonstrate its presence in ancient Peru are the remains of the fruit in molars found in the Zaña Valley (Lambayeque ). They date from the period between 7,142 B.C. and 5,802 C.

As usual, ancient cultures represented their food in pottery. This is the case of the Mochica and Chimú, which simulate pacae in vessels and bottles. In other parts of the continent, the pacay or pacae is called guaba; Its scientific name is Inga feuillei is cultivated for its large dark green pods, inside which is the edible fruit, like a white cotton soaked in nectar, which covers a black seed. It is consumed by its sweet taste and high in antioxidants, it has anti-inflammatory and healing properties.

Granadilla:

It is a climbing plant belonging to the Passifloraceae family such as passion fruit, native to the Peruvian Andes, and it spread throughout the east, between Bolivia and Colombia. Its colorful flowers caught the attention of the first Spaniards who arrived in Peru, who saw in them the representation of the elements of Jesus’ passion, from which his name derives. It is grown in climates between 15 ° and 18 ° C temperature. This fruit can provide us with many beneficial properties for the human body, vitamins and minerals essential for our body, Granadilla can help people with anxiety and stress problems since it works as a neuronal relaxant, helps in the treatment of nervous people or with insomnia since it is a natural relaxant by nature.

Pepino:

Archaeologically no traces are found because they are soft pulp and difficult to preserve, but they are often represented in various huacos of the pre-Columbian cultures Moche, Chimú and Paracas. During the Colony, the Viceroy Melchor of Navarra, prohibited the consumption of this fruit and was given the insinuating name of ‘Mata Serrano’ (Andean killer) , which is still known in certain areas of Peru due  to the dark legend by which it was believed to be Poisonous to the natives. This exotic fruit develops in a small shrub and its growth is very similar to that of the tomato plant. It prefers warm and frost-free places, so it is a fruit that grows in places where temperatures are high throughout the year. The shrub where the pepino grows can reach a height of one meter and is very similar to that of the potato plant. It has very nice little blue, purple or white flowers. Pepino is made up of a large number of antioxidants such as beta-carotene that prevents different diseases. Eating this fruit daily helps reduce blood pressure, which helps us avoid suffering from cardiovascular disorders and even heart attacks. It is very useful for relieving liver disorders and diabetes, as it helps to regulate blood sugar levels. The pepino has a large amount of vitamin A that improves vision, strengthens the density of bones and teeth, promotes healthy skin and prevents urinary stones. It is rich in calcium and soluble fiber, which greatly helps the body to avoid constipation. In Peru, its cultivation is centered in the inter-Andean valleys of Trujillo, Ica and Chincha.

Maca:

Considered by pre-Columbian cultures as a gift from the gods, maca is a herbaceous plant native to the Peruvian Andes and has multiple health benefits for those who consume it, due to its high nutritional and medicinal value. Millenary product that not only became the sacred food for its properties that elevate virility, vitality and physical strength, but also served as an offering to the Maca stabilizes and controls blood pressure, in addition to relieving insomnia. It is suggested to recompose the mental and physical balance. It also helps reduce stress and fatigue, providing energy and mental clarity. Another of its important benefits is to regulate and increase the function of the endocrine system, producing hormones necessary for bodily and metabolic functions such as fertility, sexual function, digestive, brain and physiological nervous system.

Caña de azucar:

Peru is a sugarcane producing country since the 16th century, when it was introduced with the arrival of the Spaniards; later became an important world producer. Sugarcane is an efficient plant in the use of solar radiation for photosynthesis, with the optimum air temperature between 25 and 34 ° C. According to the results of the IV National Agricultural Census 2012, around 140 000 hectares of sugarcane are cultivated in Peru and about 10 million tons of sugarcane are produced, mainly in the La Libertad and Lambayeque region. When El Niño event is presented, cane production and its quality are seriously affected. Sugarcane is a plant that is approximately 3 to 6 meters high and usually grows in warm and tropical areas of America. It can be eaten naturally or as juice. Also, this food offers a great variety of benefits, among which are:

 

  • Generates endorphins in the body, which are associated with the feeling of happiness and well-being.
  • Take care of your oral health, helping to have strong gums and healthy teeth. It will also eliminate bacteria that can cause diseases.
  • Fights colds and cough. The key is to boil the sugar cane without bark in a liter of water and drink it.
  • Accelerate your body’s metabolism and fight constipation.
  • It will make your skin look beautiful all the time. Also, it delays aging.
  • Protect your heart and keep your cardiovascular system in optimal condition.
  • Sugar cane will give you energy instantly, so you will perform your obligations without problem.

Plátano Manzanito:

Manzanito Banana: Called apple or silk banana, the apple tree belongs to the Latundan species, it is especially common in the Philippines, Mexico, Cuba and Southeast Asia, where it is part of the 57 types of bananas that exist. The Manzano banana comes from Southeast Asia. The apple tree reduces cholesterol and prevents obesity. Because 200 grams can provide 5 grams of protein, which is excellent for reducing body cholesterol levels.

 

Aceitunas:

The olive is the fruit of the olive tree with a single bone or inner seed, of variable size and color that varies from green to black when ripe, its basic flavors are acidic, bitter, sweet and salty,  which allows its use in any culinary recipe. They must be macerated first to attenuate the original bitter taste. This delicious and healthy product was introduced to Peru around 1560, at that time it was also introduced to countries such as Chile and Argentina. However, Peru, due to its geographical location and diversity of climates; It is one of the few countries in which the olive can be fully ripened on the tree before being harvested, thus obtaining the Natural Black Peruvian Olive whose delicious flavor and juicy pulp, is highly appreciated among connoisseurs. Its use is not only in gastronomy, but also the oils it stores have been used in cosmetics, medicine, perfumes, lighting, etc.

 

Maíz morado:

This variety of corn, whose cultivation dates from pre-Hispanic times. Fruit originally from the Peruvian Andes, whose characteristic that makes it unique in the world is the purple color of the crown and the grains due to the “anthocyanin” pigment. It has a solid and erect stem that can reach heights between 3 or 4 meters, depending on the variety. This ancestral product is considered a great antioxidant. Its consumption has the benefit of reducing blood pressure, it is an anticancer par excellence, protects the eye’s retina, helps control diabetes, increases capillary resistance and promotes heart health and improves circulation. This powerful grain is the base of icons of Peruvian cuisine, such as the mazamorra and the chicha morada to name a few. Currently, its consumption is massive worldwide thanks to its contribution to medicine and gastronomy, being exported to countries such as the United States and Europe where it is also used as a natural dye in the food and beverage industry.

 

Ají amarillo:

It is grown for local consumption and export throughout the Peruvian coast and intensely in the North of Its cultivation has been dated at 6,500 BC. in the department of Áncash (Peru). Like other foods grown in Peru, it has been represented in huacos mochicas. Its commercialization is done fresh, frozen and in pasta. The yellow pepper is the pepper that is most exported from Peru representing 78% of the total. Its main markets are the United States, Italy, Spain and Japan. This export has increased due to the boom in Peruvian cuisine and the emigration of Peruvians. As benefits it has to take care of the skin and protect the stomach.

 

Huacatay:

It is an aromatic herb that grows in the three regions of Peru (the Coast, the Sierra and the Jungle), in the high valleys of Bolivia and in Ecuador, in the inter-Andean valleys. It is said that the Quechuas (hence their name) collected it for medicinal Today, Peruvians reaffirm the healing properties already attributed by their ancestors, and in turn make this herb an indispensable protagonist as a condiment to give a rich flavor to some of the typical dishes and sauces. It has a very powerful aroma, since it has a similarity to the combination of mint, basil, lemon and tarragon. On the other hand, when consumed it gives us benefits for our health, medicinal properties are attributed to it as digestive and anti-abortive; in turn, the infusion of its leaves is used to relieve gastric pain and decoction of its fresh flowers and leaves to relieve colds and bronchitis.

 

 

Emoliente:

It is a traditional Peruvian drink which is prepared based on roasted grains of barley, extracts of medicinal herbs, sugar and lemon juice. Among the most used herbs are horsetail, laxseed, alfalfa, plantain and boldo, the ingredients are usually varied according to the tradition of each region and the family traditions themselves. However, it will always be recognized and the main thing that is barley and lemon juice. The emollient can be taken cold or hot at any time of the day, afternoon or night can be ingested at any age except in children with exclusive breastfeeding. Its main function is to provide water to the body to maintain hydration, however its ingredients also provide healthy elements for the human body.

 

 

Salsa de Cocona:

Spicy cocona sauce with chili pepper, is a native product of our Peruvian Amazon. This delicious and exotic mix is ideal to accompany any type of meat and saucer. Its preparation is based on cocona, a fruit that grows in tropical areas, mainly in the Peruvian Amazon, ají charapita, a type of native pepper high in flavor and small in size.

  1. First we start by peeling the coconas and cut into small We reserve the juice.
  2. Then we put the cocona in a bowl and add the cocona juice mixed with the lemon juice.
  3. We continue to finely chop the chili peppers and coriander.
  4. Add the mixture to the bowl and add the ground garlic clove and salt to taste.
  5. We mix carefully and we have our delicious sauce ready.