Tinkuy is a quechua verb which means to meet somebody. On the other hand, cuy is the spanish word for guinea pig. These two words were used to give birth to the First Food Fair Tincuy 2009. This was a two-day fair that gave Qosqo´s people as well as tourists and travellers the chance to gather with family and friends in order to indulge themselves with an array of flavours made not only with guinea pig but also with other regional produces such as trout and alpaca.
In addition to the traditional cuy al horno or roast guinea pig, the people who went to the fair had the great opportunity to try other and even new ways to prepare this andean and inca delicacy.
As a matter of fact, it would be somewhat troublesome to explain each dish in detail but if you really want to have an idea of the variety just give this list a look:
-Pepian de cuy con kapche or k´apchi de habas
-Thullan or huacchanca that is made with the belly of the guinea pig
-Sacta de cuy
-Raviole de cuy con salsa huancaína y jamón serrano
-Chicharrón de cuy
-Adobo, milaneza and picante de cuy
Flavours from Qosqo´s Provinces
Believe it or not, the women cooks from the province of Acomayo prepared a cuy borracho or drunken guinea pig which was marinated with our national beverage pisco sour. After eating this dish, you were invited to drink an anisette. If you want to try this special ¨haute cuisine¨, you may go to Acomayo on february 23rd when they celebrate Acomayo´s anniversary. This city is two-hour bus ride from Cusco.
What I did try was a dish made by Flavia Condori who came from the province of Canchis. She told me the typical food in her town is called merienda or afternoon snack. It is served with roast guinea pig, torreja de maiz, olluco, and a kind of sausage made with the intestine of the cuy.
On december 8th we celebrate the feast of the Mamacha Inmaculada and that is one of the best times to try our local food, she confided me.
Was not guinea pig the only local produce showcased in this fair, though. There were dishes made with another andean delicacy: the alpaca. Among others I spotted these dishes: costillar and lomo a la parrilla, chicharrón de alpaca and brocheta de alpaca. Being honest, I was already full with my merienda otherwise I would not help giving one of those a try. At least a bite!
Trout could not be out of the show either. However, I took notice of never-heard dishes, at least, for me. Now i am going to be aware of local restaurants called picanterias in order to try these dishes: nabo jaucha, tapuy uchu, puchero o timpu, chayro, sarsa de criadillas and soltero de kuchicara which is made with the hide of pigs.
The chefs and cooks proved their skills in a contest that pursued to create a new flavour and presentation using the andean delicacy, the guinea pig. The winner was an adobo and a crocante de cuy that was made by the Divina Comedia restaurant.