me becoming a market guide, hahaha. Robert's pic
Around 2 months ago a TB/friend LM contacted me and asked me if I'd mind meeting a friend who would come to Peru. Sure! But why me? Well, the friend is a chef!!! And I'm a foodie!!! OMG!!! I felt so lucky. Lima
is a gastronomic capital and being able to show around my hometown to somebody who loves food as much as me, was like a dream come true. But Robert is not only a guy I showed around, now I'm sure I can say we are friends :) But let's start the story, well the 1st chapter of it.
Robert arrived to Lima the day before and had a super busy agenda, but found time to give me a call before the end of the day. It was nice to listen to him after having being writing for quite a long time.
Rainforest snack: yucca rellena (stuffed yucca - with beef inside) and regional juices: cocona & camu camu. This is Robert's pic
As agreed, we met at noon. I worked during the morning and arranged everything, so I'd be free early, hehe. Which would be our first stop? An open market! He wanted to see a real market and all the products available. There are nice organized markets, but the one I know the best - since I used to go there shopping when I was a little girl - it's a bit unorganized. So I asked him, if he minded that detail. His answer was, the more local, the better, hahaha. That's the spirit! He told me he met two guys at the hostel, a restaurant's owner and a chef, both got jealous when he told them, that he had a local friend who would take him to an open market. I'm the friend!!!
We arrived to Magdalena, found a perfect parking spot and the adventure started. I felt so happy just seeing how much he was enjoying what I consider usual.
Robert at a fruit stand. This pic is Robert's
I was glad I was able to teach him about our products and how we use them, how sweet! Robert was paying attention to everything and made some questions. So good I have a good background. Robert was taking pictures while I was showing him the different veggies and fruits. I saw the granadilla (a local fruit) and asked him if he'd like to try it. Silly question. Of course he wanted to try everything! I showed him how to peel it and eat it. I really enjoy watching him trying something new and talking about that. It was awesome how he compared new things, with the things he know. We kept on walking and stopped at a rainforest stand. There I asked for a stuffed yucca and to drink for 2 regional juices. The yucca was very yummy and so was the chili. But the best was the cocona juice.
This is the restaurant: La Paisana!
I still remember, how Robert's eyes got wide open after trying it. He found a new favorite flavor.
We bought some stuff and went to the stand where I used to buy fruits. I saw a pepino (like a melon) and asked the guy to let us try it. So he peeled one and gave us some pieces. It was so refreshing. Robert got a couple of them plus other fruits. It was 1 something and it was time to get some food. Our rainforest snack was tasty, but it was time to try something new. I told Robert about green tamales. He knows the tamales but not the green ones. The best green tamales in town are made in a restaurant in the area, so there we go. When I told Robert about my plan of going there just for tamales he exclaimed: "Now you are talking!" hahaha
The place was crowded. It was sunny and Friday! But we were lucky and found a table, which was also well located.
having a delicious snack!
The owner saw me and gave me a hug, hahaha. This restaurant is local and about food from the north of Peru. We just wanted to get the green tamales, which they are very famous for, and a beer. The verdict: this was the best tamal Robert has ever tried! Now, my homework was finding the recipe, which I've already done ;) While we were having our snack, Robert was taking some notes about what he saw so far. Our table was next to the kitchen and we could see it. It was great, the only inconvenient was that at some point we felt some drops. Oh oh, they were cutting the fish and that was water that was splashing, uffff. I also asked the waiter for sarandaja, which is a comon snack in the north. Sarandaja is just boiled beans, but they are not soft but "al dente". He likes that texture! It feels so good not being the only one who gets excited with food, hahaha.
green tamal! the best green tamal in Lima!!!
Well, we were in Lima, so having cebiche was a MUST. And we will go to my favorite place for this kind of food. We went to the business area and since it was already 3pm, there was no problem finding a table. It was so good that the menu had pictures. This made the decision easier. We asked for a causa (layers of mashed potato with crab meat) and a cebiche with a sauce of 3 chiles, both dishes to share. I also asked to waiter for a sauce that I wanted Robert to try. Food was delicious as usual. I come to this restaurant quite frequently, but definitely being here with someone who was wanting to learn about the traditional flavors and was enjoying so much our cuisine, made it special! I really enjoyed talking about food and it's difficult to do it with somebody who is not that much into it.
Yadi and Robert having fish and seafood
It was almost 5 when we left the restaurant. Where to go now? Well, we already had plans for dinner. So it'd be a nice idea to drive Robert to his hostel, so he'd be able to take a short nap and arrange his flight to Puno
, while I'd go back home and check some work emails. We'd meet in a couple of hours to continue our adventures...
So bad I didn't take pics at the market... but Robert did. So I stole some... but the credits are there, so it wasn't that bad...