Food & DrinksPeruvian FoodStreet FoodTraditional Food

Grilled Skewers of Meat, Anticuchos, Scent Cuzco Nights

As time passes, fast food’s prices rise and many people who know how to cook decide to take advantage by opening a place where people can enjoy something tasty, fast, and economical.

Grilled, skewered meat, called anticuchos in our Spanish, is a Creole dish made from pieces of meat skewered on strips of cane. This very quick and tasty food is one that you see increasingly appearing in Cuzco. While they are sold in many parts of the city, there are only a few places where you can find the whole range of anticuchos.

They are served with boiled potatoes and a delicious hot sauce of hot peppers (ají). They are made naturally on the basis of our ingredients. For example, in Cuzco people often use huacatay, also called black mint, one of our favorite herbs. It gives a delicious touch to the sauces. It is also one of the ingredients that can turn sauce green which is one of our favorite colors for a hot sauce.

There are various types of anticuchos served in Cuzco. Each stick can have a different kind of meat. There can bee beef heart, chicken, beef, hot dog, and mixed (mixto).

Flaming Anticuchos on a Cuzco Street
Flaming Anticuchos on a Cuzco Street

One of the recipes that our vendors give us to make a good anticucho is to marinate the pieces of meat in a seasoned sauce a day before you cook them. The sauce is composed of ground garlic, cumin, pepper, yellow aji, and panca aji.

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Each day, from five in the afternoon the vendors come out to heat up their coals for the hard work of grilling and selling the anticuchos. They work until late at night in the heat of the coals in order to give warmth and good food to their clients.

Every so often, while they are cooking, the vendors must brush the anticuchos with seasoned oil. For this they rely on a brush made of cornhusks. The vendors in the different sites of Cuzco where anticuchos are sold always have this brush and the seasoned oil at hand.

The price of each stick of anticucho is three soles. They are sol don many corners of the city. You can also find them in restaurants such as Condorito. There they serve plates of anticuchos. Many people know the place and they always go there to enjoy these delicious bites of meat.

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