The food of Arequipa is one of the most
variety and rich from Peru, and the best place to delight with it are the
"picanterías" that are the traditional
restaurants specialized in this kind of food. They offer you a special beverage
called "chicha de jora" served in big glasses and accompanied by four
small plates with spicy regional food, in which the "rocoto" (hot
chili pepper variety) prevails. These places are usually hosted by singers or
regional musical groups.
The tradition of the "picanterías" is to
only serve certain plates in certain days, for example on Monday they serve
"Chaque", on Tuesday "Chairo", on Wednesday
"Pebre", on Thursday "Timpusca", on Friday "Chupe de
Camarones", on Saturday "Timpusca" and on Sunday a special kind
of meat called "Blanco de Lomos".
Rocoto Relleno: Elaborated with fragrant and tender rocotos
that are cut on its top as a cover, the seeds and veins are extracted to
diminish the hot flavor and they are stuffed with chopped meat, peanuts, boiled
eggs, olives, cream cheese, and milk, seasoned and baked in the oven; it is
served with baked potatoes.
Ocopa: Boiled potatoes covered with a cream (ocopa) made of
yellow hot pepper, onion, garlic, cream cheese and huacatay (spice leaf), all
blended with dry bread. It is served with boiled eggs, olives, lettuce.
Adobo: Elaborated with pieces of pork meat that have been
marinated during the night in chicha, vinegar, hot pepper and spices, cooked in
a clay pan and it is served with gravy.
Chairo: Beef broth, marinated with yellow hot pepper,
garlic, onion, spices, black chuño (root), pieces of cured meat, tongue
of lamb and "patasca" (pork and corn stew). It is served with toasted
Chupe de Camarones: Soup made with potatoes, milk, eggs,
cheese, spices, hot pepper, tomato and shrimps.
Chactado: Guinea pig or rabbit that is covered with a spicy
and hot pepper gravy and then cooked in a pan placing on top a stone until it is
cooked, it is served with boiled potatoes.
There is a regional beer that is considered one of the best in Peru, and also
an excellent liquor of anisette. There is also a very good factory of
chocolates, bonbons (masapán) and toffees.