The first time I learned about Peru was a bit of a strange and unrelated coincident.
The Langkawi International Maritime and Aerospace exhibition is known as LIMA. While looking up that up on the internet I was brought to a different Lima – the capital of Peru, and that was how I first know about this South American country.
Peruvian Gastronomic Week at Ritz Carlton – Joyce & Jamie
Fast forward many years later, I found myself sitting across a Peruvian colleague at my work place, and now a chance to get a taste of Peruvian cuisine for the first time in my life. (I ran the photos through my colleagues and he gave a thumbs up on their authenticity)
The Peruvian Gastronomic Dinner starts from 10th to 16th October 2012 and is priced at RM180++ per person (with two pisco sours). It is a collaboration between Ritz Carlton KL and the Peru Embassy.
Ceviche – tuna, mussels, salmon & octopus
Anyway, lets get on with the food.
Peruvian cuisine has a strong influence from African, Arab, Italian, Chinese, and Japanese cooking. This is particularly evident with the raw fish dish that is Ceviche.
mix this up and you get a good plate of Ceviche – seafood goodness
Ceviche is in fact declared a part of Peru’s “national heritage”. The dish is a mixture of chunks of fish/prawns/octopus with key lime, sliced onions, chili peppers, salt and pepper.
In this regard, it is actually closer to umai, a traditional Sarawakian dish I had thanks to Irene on our trip to Sipadan many moons ago.
The ceviche was delicious and we had second servings. If you like sashimi, you’ll love this.
octopus with black olive alioli and various types of potato dishes
Another interesting dish that stands out here was the octopus with black olive alioli. The octopus prepared not unlike those in Japanese cuisine, but what’s distinctive here is the black olive alioli, a sauce made from garlic, olive, lemon juice, and egg yolk with the taste that reminds me of fu yee (fermented bean curd). This needs a little getting used to, but I find it quite interesting.
Executive Chef Rafael Lopez-Aliaga mentioned that there are over 4000 types of potato found in Peru, and there’s a few samples of dishes made from potato at the festival. I enjoyed the potato with huancaina sauce (yellow chili sauce), and the mash with yellow chili and crab was excellent too.
potato, chicken & peanut stew; sea bass with seafood & spicy sauce;
tenderloin beef with onion & potato; beef and cilantro stew
The main dishes from Peruvian Gastronomic festival certainly gives a hint of their origin while retaining a unique. There are 9 different dishes presented here.
Peruvian heritage. Potato, chicken and peanut stew is something that I’ve never tasted before, with a hint of peanut butter and the savory taste of chicken, it is quite special.
Sea bass with seafood & spice sauce (they don’t call it Chilean sea bass here though they are the same thing) goes well with rice, tenderloin with onion and potato savory and delicious, and beef with cilantro stew provided a little kick to the taste buds too.
desserts! – pecan with dried fruits, rice pudding, milk pudding, and more
And then there’s the desserts. The usual suspects were rice pudding, sweet milk pudding, apricot and coconut cake, but of course, there’re those Peruvian influenced sweet dishes such as pisco chocolate cakes, chirimoya, orange and meringue. and lucama crunch.
Always good to have a sweet ending isn’t it?
pisco sour is a definite must try drinks to complete the Peruvian experience
By the way, each guest is also served two glasses of Pisco sours to complete the Peruvian experience. The drinks is a mixture of Peruvian Pisco with the addition of lime (or lemon) juice, syrup, ice, egg white, and Angostura bitters.
It was certainly an excellent dinner and a great introduction to Peruvian cuisine. Now where do I find more Peruvian food?
Peruvian Gastronomic Week @ Ritz-Carlton Hotel
168 Jalan Imbi,
55100 Kuala Lumpur
GPS: 3.146960, 101.715406
Tel: 03-2141 8000
In an unrelated news, our election is here starting tomorrow (17th Oct 2012). Watch this space for more information very soon!
It’s gonna be exciting.