Cooking class a 'breeze'

Ceviche is so ingrained in Peru’s national heritage, there is a national holiday held on June 28 every year in its honour. Picture by Justine Tyerman
We went shopping with Brisa (pictured) to buy the ingredients at the local market. Picture by Justine Tyerman
Amazonia paiche on a bed of stir-fried rice with turmeric, garlic, cumin, like-cilantro, black basil, chilli, smoked pork belly, sesame oil, 5 spice, and ginger. Picture by Lyn Tan
Chocolate mousse with avocado, custard apple, blueberries, honey and lucuma. Picture by Lyn Tan
Baked scallops with a cheese topping. Picture by Lyn Tan
Pureed artichoke on artichoke leaves. Picture by Lyn Tan
Purple potato, with lime juice and yellow chilli paste, smoked trout, avocado, olives, boiled egg and sprouts. Picture by Lyn Tan

Justine Tyerman is not much chop in the kitchen but the chef at a cooking class in Lima, Peru put her quite at ease . . . what’s more, there was nothing to cook in this traditional Peruvian dish.

The mere mention of a cooking class raises my heart rate. Memories of my school days and home economics teachers in starched white aprons scolding me for lumps in my white sauce and scones like bricks flood into my mind.

As everyone knows, I’m not much chop in the kitchen but cooking with Brisa Deneumostier was a breeze, as her name implies. The well-known Peruvian chef, whose many credentials include working at one of the world’s top restaurants, a three-star Michelin restaurant, and conducting Mindful Cooking and Living workshops, was such a delightful, relaxed presence in the kitchen, I forgot to be nervous. The pisco sours Brisa whipped up for us may have helped too!
Brisa demonstrated each process and we shared the tasks while seated around her kitchen table. Her lovely little daughter Luna and charming husband Ignatio were popping in and out to chat so the atmosphere was low-key and friendly, like a group of mates cooking together.

Brisa designed a five-course lunch with ceviche, a traditional Peruvian dish, as the main. Ceviche is so ingrained in the country’s national heritage, there is a national holiday held on June 28 every year in its honour.

Ceviche is fresh, raw fish or seafood tossed in lime juice and spiced with chilli . . . so there was nothing to cook. Just chopping, measuring and mixing, tasks even I could manage.
The flavours of the ceviche were sharp, fresh, clean and absolutely delicious.

The other dishes were pureed artichoke on artichoke leaves; purple potato, with lime juice and yellow chilli paste, smoked trout, avocado, olives, boiled egg and sprouts; scallops with Parmesan cheese, 'aji' chilli paste, chives and lime juice; Amazonia fish paiche (Arapaima gigas) on a bed of stir-fried rice with turmeric, garlic, cumin, like-cilantro, black basil, chilli, smoked pork belly, sesame oil, 5 spice, and ginger; and for dessert, chocolate mousse with avocado, blueberries, custard apple, honey and lucuma. A delectable lunch.

Just visiting Brisa’s house was a huge treat. Her mother, Marilyn Lizarraga is a renowned potter (‘Jallpa Nina’ pottery) and her home is like an art gallery. The pieces she has created and her art collection are astonishing. They brightened up a grey winter’s day in Lima described as ‘la panza de burro’ (the donkey’s belly).

Brisa’s cooking class, held at her family’s magnificent seaside residence in the trendy and bohemian Barranco neighbourhood, is one of many exceptional activities offered by Quasar Expeditions. I went to the Ecuadorian Amazon with Quasar too. More on that later . . .

Brisa’s ceviche

INGREDIENTS:
500g of fish and/or sea food
10-12 limes, juice (take out the juice gently without exerting much pressure)
½ red onion cut in julienne strips (long) and soaked in ice water for 30 minutes
1 cob of corn, boiled for 20 to 30 minutes
Chilli pepper to taste
Approx 1 tsp salt. We usually use more salt than usual because it balances acidity.
¼ tsp ginger juice (grate ginger root and then crush it to get the juice)
¼ tsp minced garlic
Coriander (chopped) to taste
5 ice cubes to make the fish firm and cold

METHOD:
Mix all ingredients except fish and/or seafood.
Add ice cubes at the end and then fish and/or seafood. Add salt if necessary.
Remove ice cubes.
Serve with canchita (roasted corn) and/or chifles (fried plantain chips).
Optional: Brisa added raw slices of oca (oxalis tuber), sliced oyster mushrooms and juice of banana passion fruit.
Serves 4

FACTBOX:

• Justine Tyerman was a guest of Quasar Expeditions (www.quasarex.com), a leader in experiential travel in Latin America.

• Quasar Expeditions is a boutique, family-run company established 33 years ago whose focus is on small-group travel to ensure an intimate and personal experience, interacting with local communities and wildlife.

• Quasar partners with conservation organisations and their priority is sustainable tourism. Their core mission is to provide opportunities to visit some of the world’s most remote, hard-to-access destinations while leaving behind the smallest possible footprint. Quasar are the pioneers of small-ship cruising in the Galapagos Islands.

• Contact your travel agent or South America specialist to find out more about awe-inspiring adventures and wildlife encounters in South America with Quasar Expeditions.

Justine Tyerman is not much chop in the kitchen but the chef at a cooking class in Lima, Peru put her quite at ease . . . what’s more, there was nothing to cook in this traditional Peruvian dish.

The mere mention of a cooking class raises my heart rate. Memories of my school days and home economics teachers in starched white aprons scolding me for lumps in my white sauce and scones like bricks flood into my mind.

As everyone knows, I’m not much chop in the kitchen but cooking with Brisa Deneumostier was a breeze, as her name implies. The well-known Peruvian chef, whose many credentials include working at one of the world’s top restaurants, a three-star Michelin restaurant, and conducting Mindful Cooking and Living workshops, was such a delightful, relaxed presence in the kitchen, I forgot to be nervous. The pisco sours Brisa whipped up for us may have helped too!
Brisa demonstrated each process and we shared the tasks while seated around her kitchen table. Her lovely little daughter Luna and charming husband Ignatio were popping in and out to chat so the atmosphere was low-key and friendly, like a group of mates cooking together.

Brisa designed a five-course lunch with ceviche, a traditional Peruvian dish, as the main. Ceviche is so ingrained in the country’s national heritage, there is a national holiday held on June 28 every year in its honour.

Ceviche is fresh, raw fish or seafood tossed in lime juice and spiced with chilli . . . so there was nothing to cook. Just chopping, measuring and mixing, tasks even I could manage.
The flavours of the ceviche were sharp, fresh, clean and absolutely delicious.

The other dishes were pureed artichoke on artichoke leaves; purple potato, with lime juice and yellow chilli paste, smoked trout, avocado, olives, boiled egg and sprouts; scallops with Parmesan cheese, 'aji' chilli paste, chives and lime juice; Amazonia fish paiche (Arapaima gigas) on a bed of stir-fried rice with turmeric, garlic, cumin, like-cilantro, black basil, chilli, smoked pork belly, sesame oil, 5 spice, and ginger; and for dessert, chocolate mousse with avocado, blueberries, custard apple, honey and lucuma. A delectable lunch.

Just visiting Brisa’s house was a huge treat. Her mother, Marilyn Lizarraga is a renowned potter (‘Jallpa Nina’ pottery) and her home is like an art gallery. The pieces she has created and her art collection are astonishing. They brightened up a grey winter’s day in Lima described as ‘la panza de burro’ (the donkey’s belly).

Brisa’s cooking class, held at her family’s magnificent seaside residence in the trendy and bohemian Barranco neighbourhood, is one of many exceptional activities offered by Quasar Expeditions. I went to the Ecuadorian Amazon with Quasar too. More on that later . . .

Brisa’s ceviche

INGREDIENTS:
500g of fish and/or sea food
10-12 limes, juice (take out the juice gently without exerting much pressure)
½ red onion cut in julienne strips (long) and soaked in ice water for 30 minutes
1 cob of corn, boiled for 20 to 30 minutes
Chilli pepper to taste
Approx 1 tsp salt. We usually use more salt than usual because it balances acidity.
¼ tsp ginger juice (grate ginger root and then crush it to get the juice)
¼ tsp minced garlic
Coriander (chopped) to taste
5 ice cubes to make the fish firm and cold

METHOD:
Mix all ingredients except fish and/or seafood.
Add ice cubes at the end and then fish and/or seafood. Add salt if necessary.
Remove ice cubes.
Serve with canchita (roasted corn) and/or chifles (fried plantain chips).
Optional: Brisa added raw slices of oca (oxalis tuber), sliced oyster mushrooms and juice of banana passion fruit.
Serves 4

FACTBOX:

• Justine Tyerman was a guest of Quasar Expeditions (www.quasarex.com), a leader in experiential travel in Latin America.

• Quasar Expeditions is a boutique, family-run company established 33 years ago whose focus is on small-group travel to ensure an intimate and personal experience, interacting with local communities and wildlife.

• Quasar partners with conservation organisations and their priority is sustainable tourism. Their core mission is to provide opportunities to visit some of the world’s most remote, hard-to-access destinations while leaving behind the smallest possible footprint. Quasar are the pioneers of small-ship cruising in the Galapagos Islands.

• Contact your travel agent or South America specialist to find out more about awe-inspiring adventures and wildlife encounters in South America with Quasar Expeditions.

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