Monday, February 15, 2010

Peruvian Recipes: Papa a la Huancaina or Potatoes Huancayo style

Papa a la Huancaína, is one of the most famous dishes of Peruvian cuisine. Boiled potatoes are topped with a slightly spicy, rich and creamy cheese sauce and are served cold or at room temperature as an appetizer or side dish.

Ingredients: (4 to 6 servings)

  • 8 Potatoes
  • 1 cup style cheese, grated
  • 1 cup Evaporated milk -- 1 cup
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons minced jalapeño
  • 1/2 teaspoon Turmeric
  • 4 to 8 Saltines or soda crackers, crumbled
  • Salt and pepper - to taste
  • about 12 Lettuce leaves
  • 4 Eggs, hard-boiled and quartered
  • 8 to 10 Black olives, pitted


1. Cover the whole potatoes with cold, salted water and boil until cooked through. Remove from heat, drain and cool. Peel the potatoes and cut in half length-wise or into rounds.

2. Place the cheese, evaporated milk, peppers and turmeric in a blender or food processor and puree until smooth. With the motor running, add the crackers one at a time to thicken the sauce. With the motor still running, drizzle in the oil. Add more crackers if the sauce is too thin, or some milk or water if it is too thick. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

3. Line a serving platter with the lettuce leaves. Place the potatoes on top of the lettuce leaves. Spoon the chile-cheese sauce over the potatoes. Garnish serving plate with egg quarters and tomato wedges. Sprinkle olives over potatoes and serve cold or at room temperature.

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