Nomad Chic Armchair Travel Series #1 : Peru


Welcome to Nomad Chic’s Armchair Travel Series.

We’ll be bringing you inspiring ideas, dreamy designs, and tantalizing tastes from our favorite corners of the globe- until we can roam again.

 

     (Photo from Shutterstock)

Pour yourself a Pisco and curl up with your favorite alpaca throw: our first stop is Peru.

This is a particularly poignant place to start our journey, as- spoiler alert!- we’re working on our own collection of Peruvian textiles and furniture.

Full transparency: we also just had to cancel plans to visit Cusco this June for the 2020 Inti Raymi Festival. We know there are bigger fish to fry, so we’ll save our sniffles and self-pity and pay homage to the beautiful country and its everlasting culture from afar.

Sun celebrations and bucket lists...

 

The Inti Raymi Festival stems from an ancient celebration of the God Sun and the winter solstice, which in the Incan calendar, begins on June 21st and lasts until the sun rises on June 24th. Despite being banned by the Spanish in the 1500’s, the ceremony and its importance lingered throughout the years and was formally revived in 1944. It’s a festival of rituals, music, and color, a true jewel in the vast treasure of Inca heritage.

 

(Photo from Viator)

 

Celestially speaking, attending the sun celebration was especially important to us as Leo’s, the zodiac sign ruled by the sun. We’ll still be channeling the sun vibes in our newest swimwear, the aptly named Inti Collection from Brescia Bercane. The Indonesian-based brand created their entire 2020 season line around South American culture and we’re smitten with the vibrant designs and sunny feels.

 

(Photo from Brescia Bercane)

 

While the Inti Raymi Festival determined our travel dates, another huge milestone was set to be met on our trip: making the trek to Machu Picchu. Thankfully, the UNESCO site has been standing since the 15th Century. We can wait a bit longer to go.

 

(Photo from UNESCO)

Style 

 

Our love affair with designer ESCVDO is no secret; you’ve probably even seen some of their gorgeous handwoven pieces hanging in our shops. We swoon for their sustainable practices and beautiful designs, all of which reflect and honor the traditions and heritage of Peru. We have limited pieces online and in Todos Santos.

(Photo from ESCVDO)

And when it comes to Peruvian style, here are a few ladies representing their country with swagger and grace:

(Photo from @styleinlima)
(Photo from @tanarendon)
(Photo from @fashionindahat)

 

Taste 

 

For us, Peruvian food means fresh ceviche, lomo saltado (a traditional beef dish), and of course, perfectly roasted chicken (pollo a la brasa) - but if you’re looking to dive a bit deeper, do so with the best: Anthony Bourdain in Season 1 of Parts Unknown

And while you watch, you can add a new dish to your quarantine repertoire,

Pastel de Acelga.

This is an adaptation of a traditional Italian-Peruvian Swiss chard pie called pastel de acelga. It's also known as tarta pascualina in other Latin American countries, like Argentina and Uruguay. You can make the filling up to a week in advance and assemble the pie the day before you plan to bake it. It's best served at room temperature.

Prep time:  1 hour 30 mins

Cook time:  1 hour

Total time:  2 hours 30 mins

Serves: 6-8

 Ingredients

  • Pie crust (2)
  • 2 bunches Swiss chard
  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped
  • ½ medium yellow onion, diced
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • Pinch nutmeg (optional)
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 7 eggs
  • Egg wash (1 beaten egg with 1 tablespoon water)
  • 4 limes, cut in quarters
  1. To make it easy and save time, we use pre-made French Pastry Crusts.  
  2. For the filling:
  3. Trim the chard by removing the tough vein through the middle and keeping the tender leaves. Chop the chard into small pieces. 
  4. Rinse them under cold water.
  5. In a large saucepan set over high heat, heat approximately 2" of water and cook chard until cooked and wilted.  Drain thoroughly.  Squeeze in a kitchen towel or paper towel to drain as much liquid as possible. 
  6. In a medium-sized sauce pan set over medium-high heat, warm the oil and then toss in the onions, and garlic. Sautee until soft and translucent, about 3 minutes.
  7. Mix the chard, evaporated milk (unsweetened), salt, pepper, three beaten eggs.  Mix in the grated Parmesan.
  8. Taste for seasonings. Sometimes as this sits, the mixture gets juicy from the water from the greens.
  9. Be sure to drain the extra juice before putting the filling into the pie (otherwise it will get soggy).
  10. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Grab a pie dish and set aside.
  11. Take two of the pie crusts out of the fridge and take off the plastic wrap.  Transfer onto your pie dish.
  12. Use your fingers to gently tuck it inside the dish allowing the rest to drape over. Use a fork and prick the pie crust all over.
  13. Pour the chard filling over the pie dough and flatten. Make 4 small holes (1 in each direction) in the filling and gently drop one egg into each one, being careful.
  14. Take the other pie crust from the fridge and repeat the process. Drape it over on top of the filling and eggs and gather the edges to seal the pie in a rustic way.
  15. Brush egg wash all over the top and place into the middle rack of the oven and bake for approximately 45-55 minutes or until the top crust is golden brown.
  16. Let cool for about 10-15 minutes before slicing and serving with lime wedges.

 

For more great Peruvian recipes, you can visit one of these websites:

(Photo from Pisco Trail)

https://www.piscotrail.com/recipes/

https://perudelights.com/

https://www.eatperu.com/

For those local to the Bay Area and Sonoma County, Ayawaska in Petaluma is open for takeout- their pollo a la brasa is a must.


¡Dios mío! All of this talk of ceviche is making us parched- time for another Pisco.

We hope you all stay happy and healthy, and we’ll see you with our next issue of remote wanderlust soon!

xx Nomad Chic