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The Museum of Peruvian Gastronomy


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Eat with your eyes! :)

Translated by Chloe Mckeown — 4 months ago

Original text by Jesus en su tinta

Hello, I hope that each and every one of you are very well! It is undeniable that Lima is the gastronomy capital of South America. Not only by the Peruvians themselves, but also by the international awards that Lima has won. For example, this year, 2016, Lima has won the award for the best culinary destination in South America in the World Travel Awards for the fifth consecutive year.

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Varieties

Everyday, thousands of visitors come to the Peruvian capital in search of this gastronomic adventure and to be able to enjoy all of the different tastes that can be found in Lima.

The price

Due to the gastronomic boom, a few years ago “la casa de la gastronomía Peruana” (the house of the Peruvian gastronomy) was created in Lima. When it was first created, it was free and that was when I went in, every time I passed by with some of my friends who were visiting the centre of Lima. However, recently the Museum has changed its policy and now to enter you have to pay four soles.

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They are respresentations of dishes, not real!

The museum does not sell Peruvian food, as you might think. What you will really be able to see here, is an interesting and educational display of the wide distribution of products that are found throughout my beloved Peru.

You will see an interactive map with different products that are found in Peru, which is why we are one of the most mega diverse countries in the world. This is one of the reasons that we are so proud to be part of this beautiful Inca country, which goes way beyond that.

So many potatoes in Peru

On the other hand, there is also the potato production, from how it is harvested until it reaches the table of Peruvian families. You know that Peru is one of the countries with the greatest variety of potato in the world. Let me ask you for example, how many kinds of potatoes do you think we have in Peru?

Let the bets run, some will say 100, 200 or 300. No! We have more that 4000 potatoes that are native to Peru. As you can tell, we are a potato country :) Rich in this root vegetable that has fed Europe during famines and provide nutrients to our diet today. For example, here we have dishes that are always accompanied by potato or starters such as the 'papa rellena' (fried, stuffed potatoes).

Figures in the museum's history

On the other hand we have to understand that none of this would be possible without the action and hard work of different Peruvians and figures in the Peruvian gastronomy, from pre-Hispanic, colonial and republican times, until today.

The Museum of Peruvian gastronomy shows scenes of the daily activity that these characters carry out, working on the Peruvian gastronomy. Also, I will tell you that you will work up an appetite here, of course! We are in a culinary museum.

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There are a lot of models that when you see them you will think are real dishes, that will take you on an imaginary journey through the coast, mountains and jungle of Peru.

A special mention must be given to the different desserts that we have in Lima, from our delicious mazamorra morada (purple corn pudding) as well as our doña pepa turron and our tasty 'picarones' (doughnuts made with sweet potato).

My appreciations and experiences here

I have had the opportunity to see how this architectural monument has changed. When I just started university and I had to walk to the centre of Lima, the gastronomy museum didn't exist yet, instead there was an exhibition of Peruvian coins and telegraphs.

I could say that the state has been able to do many valuable things to maintain the strength in gastronomy since it is something that people in Lima are so proud of. However, I could also say that they need to do more to encourage and make the museum more public since it is an excellent location and it could be taken advantage of fully to encourage internal and international tourism.

For example, something that could help to develop the museum, is the presence of tour guides who could be invited to different tourism schools in institutions and universities in Lima.

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A monument with history and present

As we have been able to see, the museum of Peruvian gastronomy is quite educational in that it gives us an idea of the wealth of Peru throughout its coast, mountains and jungle, as well as being able to marvel over the variety of products that they have there. However, it is not only the exhibition that will grab your attention but also the structure of the monument itself, where the House of Peruvian gastronomy is located. This is because, it used to be the central post office of Lima, so if you putter around you will see the Serpost company, who are still running here, making deliveries. There is also a place that sells stuffed toys and different postcards from Peru that you can send to you family and friends and share your experience with them.

What I recommend to do and how to get there

Finally, I want to tell you that it is easy to get there because it is only a few steps from the square Plaza de Armas in Lima, where you can spend an afternoon or a spectacular morning. If you are a foreigner who wants to know more about the gastronomy in Peru then this museum is for you. As I said there are are various ways you can get there from the centre of Lima. The best way to get there is by using public transport and in particular by taking the metro line C. You can also take the blue bus that stops in the street Tacna avenue. My dear friends, I hope that you are encouraged to go and visit this great museum in Lima soon.

If this works up your appetite, at the weekend there is a gastronomy market next to the museum, very close to what would be the Santo Domingo convent and the Chabuca Granda square. Here you can try different Peruvian stews. You are also presented with live music that you can enjoy until you leave there. I am sure that you will find the creole and regional dishes to be delicious as well as the sweet things. You can eat with the local people from Lima who also come to the centre to learn about these magical interests.

Thank you for reading this post! I hope that I have encouraged you to walk around this museum and that you can nurture yourself more and more with this gastronomy. Why not work up your appetite a little and then run off to eat in the restaurants in the gastronomy capital of America. See you next time! See you soon and have an amazing day.

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