This Peruvian Spicy Hot Chicken Stew Will Make You Drool Ominously

Ají_de_gallina_-_Tradicional

Food connoisseurs often have great affinity for Peruvian food. It is because most of the Peruvian dishes are steeped in history and use a blend of scrumptious, exotic and local ingredients. Though the dishes evolve with time, however, the basic ingredients stay more or less the same.

Aji de gallina is one of the most popular dishes in Peru. A spicy chicken stew, it is best served on a cold wintry day in Peru. This Peruvian dish is an all time favorite among locals.  The more said about it, the less it is. A traditional Peruvian dish, Aji de gallina bears a yellow color that comes from the famous yellow pepper. The rich creamy sauce made with ground walnuts adds an appetizing flavor to it. It is often served with white rice, boiled potatoes, boiled eggs and black olives.

Aji de gallina that stands for chili pepper chicken finds its roots in French Revolution transpired in the late 18th century.  After French aristocrats were overthrown and imprisoned, chefs who used to work for them lost their jobs. Unemployed chefs travelled across the world and some of them coincidently landed in Peru.  From there began, fusion of local Peruvian cuisines with French culinary traditions leading to many exciting dishes. Aji de gallina is the result of blending of these two cultures. Legends have that pepper used in preparation of Aji de Gallina were used during Incas reign.  On the other hand, the flavoring is attributed to French ingredients like cheese, garlic, and olives.

Restaurante Bolivariano

Aji de gallina is an easy dish to prepare.  Chicken breasts, onions, carrots and garlic are slowly heated in water in a saucepan. Let the chicken become tender before removing it to a plate and then allow it to cool. Add evaporated milk to strained chicken stock. Shred the cooled chicken and discard the bones. Stir minced garlic and onion in oil in a pan. Add shredded chicken along with yellow pepper to the pan. Bread puree is added to make the curry thick. The dish is seasoned with turmeric.  It is served hot with hard-boiled egg slices sprinkled with olives.

Learn more about Peruvian cuisine by contacting Karikuy.

Image 1: De Feralbt – Trabajo propio, CC BY-SA 3.0

Image 2: djjewelz

Image 3: astuviaje

Jude C

I am a travel enthusiast who has closely worked with different communities in India. My interests range from alternative rock to English literature. I also happen to love cats a lot.

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