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Peruvian anticucho stall among ‘world’s best-kept secrets’

Updated on April 2, 2013
Doña Grimanesa Vargas grilling her anticuchos on a barbecue.
Doña Grimanesa Vargas grilling her anticuchos on a barbecue. | Source

Anticucho stalls

I first read about Doña Grimanesa Vargas in Peru this Week and then later also read about her in Time magazine. When I was living in Peru while a child, the football stadium was the place to go to find anticucho stalls and I could not believe that somebody was selling them in Miraflores now, the suburb where I used to live and this is the link:

As a Peruvian I was excited to discover that Time was now spreading the word to the world! “For nearly 40 years, the legendary Doña Grimanesa Vargas has cooked her anticuchos—the Peruvian take on kebabs—to perfection. Most of that time was spent on the same street corner in Lima’s Miraflores district, but as her fame grew, so did the queues,” the magazine wrote.

Grimanesa’s anticuchos, Time says, eventually drew in so many people, that she opened up her own restaurant in 2011. The meat is tender, the marinade is delicious and it’s well worth the wait for a seat,” the magazine added.

Anticuchos (singular anticucho, Quechua for cut stew meat) are popular and inexpensive dishes that originated in Peru, also popular in other Andean states consisting of small pieces of grilled skewered meat.


The meat is marinated in vinegar and spices (such as cumin, ají pepper and garlic), and while anticuchos can be made of any type of meat, the most popular are made of beef heart (anticuchos de corazón), although I guess most tourists buying them would have no idea about the meat they are made of! When I was living in Australia, back in the 1970's and we wanted to prepare anticuchos for a party, the only place to get beef hearts was to look for them in the pet food section! Anticuchos are usually served with corn and a boiled potato.

Choclo, or Peruvian corn is a large kernel corn from the Andes. It is consumed in parts of Central and South America, especially in Peru and Colombia. The oversized kernels are described as less sweet than other types of corn. Choclo is used in the making of arepas in Colombia and also for pastel de choclo. Peruvian corn is also white in color, not yellow.


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    • sylvia13 profile image

      Sylvia Gadea de Beer 4 years ago from Shoal Bay, NSW, Australia

      Yes, that is a dish I miss too, as well as many other ones!

    • Princessa profile image

      Wendy Iturrizaga 4 years ago from France

      My mouth is watering thinking about anticuchos with roasted potatoes and "ajicito". A very simple and cheap dish that is always welcomed by my foreign friends. I remember as a little girl we used to go to a street stall near our house, sit on the wooden bench and eat our anticuchos and pancita served on a corn leave, yummy yummy.

      Nowadays I only have anticuhos when my mother comes to visit us and cooks her delicious Peruvian dishes for us. That is a dish I miss!

    • sylvia13 profile image

      Sylvia Gadea de Beer 4 years ago from Shoal Bay, NSW, Australia

      lemonkerdz 8 - Thanks for your comment! I was also happy when I saw two ads about our typical anticuchos, best eaten in stalls out on the street and now even in a restaurant in Miraflores! Peruvian food seems to have come up in the world now!

    • lemonkerdz profile image

      lemonkerdz 4 years ago from LIMA, PERU

      It's great to see peruvian food getting some publicity. Street food like the anticuchos and picarones are some of the best i have tried and very very cheap for what they are.

      Cooked well and especially in restaurants in lima miraflores area is the best and safest place for tourists to give them a try when heading to the tourist destinations.

      I have a hub which includes woman who has had a picarone stall for the last 30 yrs in cusco. How many in the states or uk can keep a food stall going 30 yrs?