Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Fried eggs and green bananas

Multi-tasking. I think I've proven today that I am just as adept at this as any other woman.
  • I drank a cup of tea while drying my hair and running late for uni. 
  • I weighed up the pros and cons of borrowing a couple of lemons off a tree from a garden down the street while crossing the road without being struck by a car. (And no, I'm doing going to steal their fruit, even under the cover of darkness, though it's awfully tempting). 
  • I cooked dinner while setting off the smoke alarm.
  • And right now I'm typing a blog entry while watching a cheesy romantic comedy, drinking a Pisco sour, staring at the pile of washing I should be folding and putting off doing the washing up.
Speaking of Pisco sours, if there's a better way of using raw egg white, I haven't discovered it yet. 
On that note, the bottle's just about empty so if anyone knows where I can find Pisco in New Zealand, I'm all ears. 

I cooked a typical Peruvian meal tonight hence the Pisco sour for afters. Rice, fried green bananas and egg makes a simple and substantial meal that is sold in most cheap restaurants in Peru and better yet is normally the most budget friendly item on the menu. 

To jazz up the rice you can make tacu tacu instead. It's rice fried with beans and served in a pattie-shaped mound on the plate. In Peru it's one of the many ways of serving up the same chicken and rice but with a different name. 

There were no white beans in the pantry so I used chickpeas. I also switched out yellow chili sauce for chili powder. 

Here's the recipe:

  • Boil white rice then drain it. 
  • Fry one diced onion in a generous splosh of oil. Add the chili powder. 
  • Add the cooked rice and beans to the pan. Stir fry on a high heat until it starts to get a bit of a brown skin. 
  • While that's cooking in another pan fry chopped green banana in oil (one per person).
  • Dish up the rice mixture (the tacu tacu) - like a big pancake-like pattie. Put the green banana on the side. 
  • Quickly fry up one or two eggs per person and pile them on top.
  • Enjoy.

Mine doesn't look all that pretty or taste as authentic as the real deal from a cheap roadside diner but it's filling and tasty enough. 

The proper recipe is in this great Peruvian cookbook The Food & Cooking of Peru by Flor Arcaya de Deliot that I plan to slowly cook my way through - a bit of a Julie Powell style challenge. It might take me a while to pluck up the courage to cook the tripe dishes though!

typical breakfast of spicy sausage and patacones
(fried banana) in Tarapoto, Peru
tacu tacu with chicken in Huanchaco, Peru

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