Breakfast blast, Peruvian style
Peruvian Tamales from Galería de tutto_azzurro
With breakfast as my most important meal no other fare has bowled me over more than its breakfast (no pun intended). Indeed, they are quite poles apart from my usual Filipino/Asian chow. As in my first day in Lima, major coastal cities daily breakfast fare is fast and simple: French bread (Pan Frances, a roundish-oval shaped bread, similar to country bread as opposed to the long, crusty “baguette”) usually served with native cheeses, jam or butter with a cup of coffee, tea or an oatmeal drink (watered down oat meal) or sometimes but not often, fresh fruit juice – papaya or orange. What amazed is not how simple it is, but the variety and age-old way they prepare the cheeses and jams- indigenous artisanal and all-natural regional produce.
At Lima’s outskirts, hot emollients are often prepared as breakfast, usually with barley, such as flaxseed, alfalfa, lemon and infusion of various herbs, or boiled quinoa, served with French bread, native cheese or fried egg.
Neighborhood “Bagueteria”. In Lima’s neighborhoods, it is more customary for families to eat in the local bagueteria for Sunday Brunch usually “Desayuno Andino” or Andean breakfast. This more elaborate Sunday fare include “tamales” (corn dough seasoned with Peruvian chilies, with chunks of chicken or pork wrapped in banana leaves), or “humitas”, the sweet version, Chicharron and salsa criolla described in earlier entry served as "sánguche”, slang for sandwich. A popular variation of the Chicharron filling is “jamon del pais” (home made pork) or the healthier and yummier turkey ham. Other Sunday breakfast highlights include native sausage stew, “asado” beef stew or tenderloin steak served with French bread, fresh fruit juice and boiled corn.
Famous bagueterias, pastelerias or cafés in Lima are the franchised, high-end quality San Antonio, La Baguette, Delicass and Don Mamino, as well as the traditional Rovegno, Haiti, or the storied El Cordado. As for me, my Sunday life saver (when my maid goes on day off) is my next door neighbor, Bagueteria Don Mario, where if you don’t buy early enough on weekends, all baguettes and French bread run out on weekends by 10 AM. Bagueterias usually offer more and sell better than breakfast, such as scrumptious quick lunch menus, salads, quiches, cakes, pastries, and some of the most delectable home-made ice cream. But that’s for my next entry – Lima’s fabulous cafes!