SUMAQ Peruvian Food Festival – Part 2

Instagram Post 9/17/2019

More from this year’s SUMAQ Peruvian Food Festival that took place on the grounds of The Cradle of Aviation Museum in Garden City, Long Island last month. Sumaq translates as “delicious” in Quechua, the language of the indigenous people of Peru, and I can’t think of a more appropriate adjective for this delightful event.

(Click on any image to view it in high resolution.)

Picarones, presented by numerous vendors. Peru’s answer to the doughnut, only better because the dominant ingredients are sweet potato and squash, deep fried and drizzled with chancaca (dark brown sugar or molasses) syrup or honey, and always prodded and retrieved with a long wooden stick.

Among the offerings from La Matarina Restaurante Turístico was fried cuy; their rendition of spicy stewed cuy was also available. Cuy is guinea pig. Yes, guinea pig, and it’s tasty. The flavor depends on which piece you’re eating, just like the flavor of chicken depends upon whether it’s dark meat or white meat or wing meat. And no, cuy does not taste like chicken. (These days, even chicken doesn’t taste like chicken, but that’s another story.)

Fried cuy plated with quinoa risotto. Do try to keep an open mind about cuy; don’t think of it as a pet. If you’re a carnivore, then you accept that some animals are food and some are pets but where that line is drawn can be fungible. Personally, like so many people from Peru, Ecuador, and Columbia, I don’t see cuy as a pet any more than a farmer sees their chickens as pets. On the other hand, Mary had a little lamb.

Ceviche! (To take your mind off the cuy.) From El Gol Marino.

Go with a group – the more people, the more you can try. One more post about the annual SUMAQ Peruvian Food Festival to come….