Here at Surtrek, one of our favourite things about any adventure in South America is experiencing new tastes, as we delve into the local gastronomy during our trips. Better yet, cookery classes and gastronomical tours mean we can learn the tips from the experts themselves, sometimes even taking home recipes to remind ourselves of those fantastic Latin American memories, while impressing guests at the same time! Here, we’ve put together some of our top culinary activities – though bear in mind that this is just a ‘taste’ of what is to come during your own gastronomical journey through South America.
Learn to Prepare Ceviche in Lima
Peru has – in recent years – made a name for itself in the culinary world, with its unique blend of South American and Asian influences owed to various waves of Chinese and Japanese immigrants, who contributed their flavours and gourmet tricks to the country’s cauldron of gastronomic delights. One of the most iconic dishes in Peru is ceviche – fresh seafood cured in citrus juice – which, not only will you have plenty of opportunities to try during any time spent in Lima, but can also learn to prepare it yourself during a cooking class with a local chef. The class starts in Lima’s food market, returning to the kitchen to whip up a feast and take note of how this lip-smacking delicacy is created, toasting your efforts with a homemade Pisco Sour. We can’t think of a better way to kickstart your Peruvian adventure!
Incorporate a ceviche cookery class into your trip to Peru.
Coffee in Colombia
Caffeine addicts and non-coffee drinkers alike will enjoy a plantation tour in the Coffee Region of Colombia, providing an insight into the production of this sacred bean while affording spectacular views of the verdant scenery all around. You can try your hand at picking the beans themselves, and also see how each farm processes their crops differently, whether opting for modern or traditional techniques. Of course, there’ll be plenty of coffee to sample and your guide will explain how to tell the difference between a high-quality cup versus a lesser one. So, there’s nothing left but to breathe in the aromatic scents and sip away!
Incorporate a coffee tour into your trip to Colombia.
Dinner with the Locals in Buenos Aires
Rather than cooking a meal yourself, why not get to know Buenos Aires and its gastronomy by enjoying a delicious dinner with some friendly locals? This dining experience allows you to chat with a bunch of Porteños – both born-and-bred locals and devoted expats – while savouring a succulent steak dinner, finding out about what life is like in Argentina’s capital and sharing some exquisite cuisine along the way. You can even participate in an empanada-making competition, testing yourself in the delicate creation of this typical Argentine snack, and learn how to make wine-based cocktails with a sommelier to finish the night off in style.
Incorporate a dinner with locals into your trip to Argentina.
Wine-tasting in Ecuador
Ecuador may not be the first country that springs to mind when you think of fine wine producers in South America, but rest assured – we have tried and tested it for ourselves and we highly recommend it to anyone with a weakness for wine! From Quito, you can head out on a tour of local vineyards to discover how the owners produce their delectable varieties, before sampling the wine with homemade cheese and bread to round it all off. What’s more, this tour takes you to some of the famous rose nurseries nearby, offering a complete treat for all the senses!
Incorporate a wine-tasting tour into your trip to Ecuador.
Cooking Caribbean Style in Cartagena
Few places in South America fuse their Latino flavours with Caribbean twists; but that’s precisely what you’ll find in Cartagena, Colombia’s dazzling city where brightly coloured buildings contrast with the sparkling seas beyond. Delve into the tantalising smorgasbord of dishes during a cookery demonstration, and make your own dishes like coconut rice and seafood specialties, zingy soups and more, under the guidance of a local chef who will teach you the secrets to Cartagena gastronomy. The best part is, of course, tucking into lunch at the end of your lesson, having learnt all about the history behind each dish and those typically Cartagena techniques.