The Anticucho is the heart of Peruvian food. This dish based on veal heart cooked in pieces on charcoal has become one of the most loved on tables around the world. And it is that its special aroma and delicious flavor make it an icon of the popular culture of Peru.
At an outdoor cart stand, in a traditional restaurant or in the comfort of your home, a bite of anticucho combined with a portion of potatoes, corn and a good chili sauce will thrill your palate.
Before the arrival of the Spaniards, a large quantity of llama meat seasoned with aromatic herbs and ajíes was consumed in Peru.
Later, in the viceroyalty, the slaves fed on the trifles and leftovers that remained from the viscera of the cattle. But with the gradual arrival of the conquerors, the dish took the form it has today: large pieces of beef heart skewered on cane sticks and grilled.
This is how the Anticucho acquired brightness and flavor. So much so that the famous Peruvian writer Ricardo Palma cited this dish in his work Peruvian Traditions, where he describes it as a «steak on a stick» and highlights the demanded sale of it always at 3 in the afternoon.
The Anticucho became so popular that today it is very common to find a steaming cart in each district of the capital around which diners clamor for their respective portion in toothpicks. It’s more. Throughout the world, Peruvian colonies are organized to taste it, as well as several of the most prestigious restaurants.
To enjoy this dish, you must first clean the heart of the beef and remove all the nerves, veins and fat. Then, it is cut into small pieces and placed in a bowl.
Here it is seasoned with garlic, cumin, peppers, vinegar, salt and pepper, and then left to macerate for at least 12 hours in the refrigerator.
Finally, each piece is crossed with its stick and fried on a grill. Once golden, they are removed and served accompanied by potatoes and corn.
Be sure to try this delicious stew -which celebrates its day every third Sunday in October- on your next trip to Peru. You will love its taste. Guaranteed.