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My older son Evann came home with a piece of paper and the header screamed “House MasterChef” at his school. Along with it the rules of combat and the ingredients that need to be used. So we spent a weekend chatting, Bhanu, Evann and myself.

We looked back upon our many journeys to Guadalope, Pacasmayo, Trujillo and realised that we never ever wrote in this blog about our journeys in Lima, the local cuisine is highly influenced by the Incas and the cuisines from Europe( mostly Spain,Germany and Italy), Asian( predominantly China & Japan). Peru’s staple food is Corn, Potatoes, Tubers and Quinoa. They still use many ancient grains and beans in their food. Peruvian food has become more popular in the recent years. It is a very interesting country simply for the produce you find there like prickly pear, guanabana, or the dragon fruit to name a few. I have always been intrigued on my many journeys, and  the time spent with locals cooking fresh fish with Aji Peppers would remind me of humble an origin this cuisine has. It is simple but tasteful purely because of the local produce and cooking traditions.

I would need an entire year to write of the Peruvian culture and food. This blog today we present a dish influenced by the Peruvian cuisine and the extensive use of Corn. To keep with the brief that my son brought home we made a Ceviche using butternut squash, and you will be surprised that it does not require to be cooked, the ceviche dressing will slowly mature the squash, and its presented in a fun way way that kids love to eat – a Taco. We then gave the dish a Mexican twist by using Pico De Gallo, Guacamole and a Lemon Mayonnaise and of course with a shot of Virgin Mojito. Buen Provecho !!

Butternut  Squash Ceviche Taco.

Taco :

10″ Corn Tortilla – Cut into a 7cm x 7cm and using the back of a muffin tray lay it with the curved side at the bottom in between the mould and cook at 165c for about 6-7minutes, ensure you don’t burn it. Leave aside to cool.

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Tortilla for Taco

Butternut Squash Ceviche:

Ceviche Dressing –

Lime – 2 Lime, with the juices squeezed

Garlic – 1/2 teaspoon, finely chopped

Red Onion – 1 teaspoon, finely chopped

Coriander – 1 teaspoon, finely chopped

Red Chilli – 1/2 teaspoon, finely chopped

Salt – to taste

Butternut Squash Prep:

Peel and chop finely, 60gm of Butternut Squash. Then add 1/4 teaspoon paprika and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Rest for ten minutes then add Ceviche Dressing for 20 minutes, strain and leave aside.

Virgin Mojito:

Sugar – 2 tablespoons

Hot Water – 1 teaspoon

Lime – Juice of 1 lime

Mint – 4 Leaves

Ice Cold Water – 2 tablespoons

Put hot water into the sugar and stir until the sugar has dissolved, then add the lime juice and mint and bruise the mint with a spoon, add cold water and strain through a fine strainer and store chilled in a shot glass rimmed with salt.

Pico de Gallo:

Baby Plum Tomato – 50gm, diced small

Red Onion – 1 tablespoon, finely chopped

Red Chilli – 1 teaspoon, finely chopped

Coriander – 1 tablespoon, finely chopped

Lime – juice of 1/2 lime

Salt – to taste

Mix together all the chopped ingredients add seasoning.

Guacamole:

Avocado – 1/2, skin removed

Garlic – 1/2 tsp, finely chopped

Coriander – 1 tsp, finely chopped

Red Pepper – 1/2 tsp, finely diced

Red Onion – 1 tsp, finely chopped

Salt – to taste

Garnish:

Iceberg – 30gm finely shredded

Red Radish – 3 thinly sliced rounds

Red Pepper – 1 tsp, finely chopped

Lime Mayo

Mini Tortilla Crisps

Coriander Leaves

 

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