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Peruvian cuisine draws inspiration from many sources. It draws from local sources in the high Andes Mountains where chickens, goats, cattle and other traditional meats are dried and combined with soups and sides. But it also has influences from settlers who came and made do with their own spices with what they could find.
The Saltado de Vainitas con Pollo, roughly translated as dried chicken with green beans and other vegetables, is a testament to this tradition. The dish is served with an “aji” sauce, which is blended with lettuce, garlic and some kind of cream. It is incredibly soothing with the different flavors. It’s also a good pacifier after you try the rocoto pepper sauce—a tough contender on the Scoville scale.
The chicken works well cooked a little dry and coupled with a medley of sautéed vegetables and a pile of fluffy, flavorful rice that wobbled on the plate as the server brought it.
If you’re in the mood for something that tastes very familiar but is distinctively different, speak with your servers. At Inka Mama’s, they were very knowledgeable and eager to explain the origin and combination of the dishes.