Its Friday and time for our Peruvian cookery course. Jane and Tilly were a little unsure about this as they thought it might be too technical and hence no fun. Luckily, they were very wrong!
We were told to have a big breakfast and no lunch so by the time we were picked up at 2.30 we were getting a bit hungry. The afternoon started with a tour round the local market where we had a chance to look at fruit and vegetables we'd never seen before. Peruvian avocados are just so much better than ours being twice the size with a thin skin and the creamiest flesh ever. There's fruit that tastes like caramel and cactus fruit that's bright red and tastes heavenly. We also saw dried Alpaca foetus' which look as gross as you imagine which they don't eat but bury as an offering to the earth for good crops.
We did the course with another English family from Nottingham. It's strange that the only other English people we've met have been through Audley and we've not met or heard people while we've been out.
We then walked back and learned how to make Pisco Sours, something we'd seem many times but it was fun to make our own; 4 shots of Pisco, 2 of sugar syrup, 2 of line juice, 4 or 5 ice cubes, half an egg white and then shake well. Pour into glass and garnish with 3 drops of bitters. Perfect!
Our first food cooking was a layered potato dish that used waxy boiled potatoes, rehydrated dehydrated potatoes (yes, that's right) and cheese. These are are layered into a manikin dish and covered by a cheesy egg and evaporated milk mixture and then baked in the oven. The weird potatoes come from the locals preserving potatoes by leaving them out overnight in freezing high altitude conditions and then in the heat of the sun during the day. The result is a rock hard dried potato that will keep for years. When rehydrated is does taste a bit gross but when mixed with the cheesy mixture it was ok.
We also made 3 types if civeche which is raw fish covered in a citrus mixture (normally lime) with chillis, onion etc. It must only be left minutes after the mixture touches the fish or the fish starts to cook in the juice. It is generally spicy but tastes great. The next dish was a gorgeous quinoa risotto with mushrooms and a desert containing the fruits we'd got from the market and cream.
They use a lot of cheese in their cooking which is quite young and a little rubbery and very little choice. They also use evaporated milk as it lasts longer than fresh cream and fir them is lower fat and much cheaper.
The evening finished around 8 and we wondered back to our hotel.