Potato is the main food for the Andean people. It seems that the domestication of potatoes began around the LakeTiticaca by the Aymaras and other people settled there.

The potato was such an important food to The Aymaras that called it ch'uqi which means "raw food" . The simplest way to eat the potato is the qhathi.

Cooking is an activity for women (the warmi) and grandmothers. Rarely is found a married or an old man cooking.

The quinoa and other crops (specially corn) formed the basis of the Aymara diet.


The Watia is an Andean dish. It is a kind of Andean curato that was tasted by the Quechua and Aymara people. It is prepared in a hole and covered with leaves of alfalfa, soil and stones.

The amounts of foods should be judged according to the number of guests.

Different types of meat (lamb, pork, alpaca, chicken), It could be optional.
Adjust seasonings to taste (pepper, cumin, locoto (chili), salt)
Sweet potatoes
Choclo (maize)


Dig a hole in the ground and fill it with hot stones.
In a pan, cook the meat to your preference. Add seasonings to taste.
When the curanto is ready, put the pan over the stones and enclose it in sweet potatoes, maize and pumpkins wrapped in aluminium foil.
Cover with leaves of choclo or alfalfa, soil and damped bags.
Leave for an hour and serve with a cup of juice, chuño potatoes and watercress and lettuce salad.

Chuño potatoes
: new potatoes that are stomped and left on the roof on frosty nights. After getting dark the potatoes can be cooked.

Related Sites:

Potje de Olluko

The Aymaras give thanks for rain
The CHAKANA (the Southern Cross)

"The Aymaras are everlasting men because they remember the past before move into future" Carlos Mile Villena "Genesis of the Andean Culture"

Cieza de León, chronicler, collected in his works:...."After flood, Pachacamac repopulate the earth sending four stars, two male and two female. From one of the two couple was born the kings and the nobles and from the other the ordinary people" (Varcalcel "History of ancient Perú": volume IV). The Aymara people was situated in the south of Peru. They knew Astronomy more than others. At the beginning of the month of May, they celebrate the cross feast as well as all Andean people. Despite of some beliefs, this celebration is related to the constellation that appears in the firmament: The southern cross.

It was a day of happiness, gratefulness. Because of the paradox of the Andean culture, they (the Aymaras and the Incas) ate a tuber which is similar to drops of rain. It can come in a wide range of colors (red, yellow, dwelled) and shapes (round and small plenty of juice and nutrients). It is named: OLLUKO.

Nowadays, in spite of its harvest is plentiful in May, Olluko is also produced in November when rains begins in this part of Andes region. It said that Olluko has fresh flavor that strengthen and gets the urge to generate the life again. Olluko had a close relation with the Andean worldview.


1/2 Kg chopped olluko
1/2 Kg chopped potatoes,
salt to taste,
2 cups "chicha de jora",
2 teaspoon dried ground chili,
1 tbsp sugar,
2 tbsp lard,
Chopped fresh cheese

Put dried ground chili, lard, salt, sugar and chicha de jora in a clay pot. Cook it for 10 minutes, then add Olluko and potatoes (parboil). Cook on a low heat for half hour. Se retira del fuego and spread fresh cheese.
To serve acompañado de perejil.

Colaboración enviada por Rodolfo Tafur Zevallos
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La Maca

Maca is a legendary sex-enhancing root from Perú, that was first used by the Incas and discovered by the Chibcha Herbalists. Maca is a root that looks like a little turnip or radish that contains high amounts of vitamins (B1, B2, B12, C, E, caroteno), mineral, and the essential amino acids.

Maca grow at altitudes beetwen 3.500 and 4.500 meters above sea level, on the plateau of Bombom in the departments of Junón and Pasco in Peru. A member of the Cruciferous family, there are four varieties of "maca". In the natural habitat where maca is grown, temperatures during the day reach 7°C and at night can drop as low as -8°C.

When the Spaniards arrived in Peru, according to their chronicles, maca was also demanded as tribute by the conquering Spaniards. Maca was used as an energy enhancer and for therapy, increasing male potency, or improving other hormonal function.

The Maca flour has aphrodisiac and fertility-enhancing properties. Two spoons of maca flour per day, mixed with milk, juices, beverages is usually recommended.



Dried maca root: 1 kg
Sugar: ½ kg
Aguardiente de Caña (Caña)*: ½ bottle
Anise flavored liquor: to taste
Milk: 1 litre

* Liquor made from sugar cane.

In a saucepan, boil the dried maca root in salted water. Liquefy it with the milk. Add sugar until to thiken, then add the Caña and Anise flavored liquor


Dried maca roots: 1 kg
Bee honey or Sugar: to taste
Cinnamon and Clove: to taste

Wash the dried maca roots. Soak for at least one day, then boil in salted water. Cut it into small pieces and liquefy with sugar or bee honey.
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