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The Gilded Fork & Madrid Fusion 2006: Gaston Acurio, Latin American Pride edit

The Gilded Fork: "Savory Coffee Recipes", Coffee Vinaigrette, Cashew Mole, Rosca de Reyes Tropical al Café.

For the Spanish version of the following post and more photos, visit Chef Elena's El Amor por la Cocina***Para leer este post en Español, visitar El Amor por la Cocina

Gaston1_2 Gastón  Acurio's remarkable presentation at the Madrid Fusion 2006 has received rave reviews from food critics and chefs all over the world. It was not only the fact that he is from Perú, a Latin American country dear to our heart and one of the richest ones when it comes to culinary culture in this continent, and why not say it: from the whole world too!

His story is the perfect example of a person that when exposed to the world and it's many choices, found his real love in life: "cooking" in his case.

This is his story:

Many summers ago, there was a Peruvian young man who went to Spain to study law. Half way he realized that spending the rest of his days like a lawyer, was not his thing. It was then when he dreamed of being  a Chef, he dreamed dreams of grandiosity for him and his country, which through his cooking, would one day be known. It was then when he packed his life in a suitcase and went to Paris, where he obtained the Cordon Bleu's Grand Diplome back in the early 90's, at the young age of 24.

Gaston5 While at the culinary school he met Astrid, a beautiful German girl, who later became his wife. After spending sometime in Paris, and experimenting the life of a cook in that beautiful city, they moved to Lima, Perú and opened their first restaurant: "Astrid y Gastón" or "A y G", portraying a modern concept of the traditional Peruvian cuisine, very "personal" is how he describes his own food.

The success of "A y G" has trespassed the Peruvian borders to the points of which nowadays, they have branches in Quito-Ecuador, Santiago-Chile, Bogotá-Colombia, and soon in Panama, Caracas-Venezuela, and in México City-México.

chef panama gourmet panamagourmet delicious recipe recipes receta recetas cooking food cookingdiva diva peru gaston acurio

In addition to the restaurants, they have also opened "cebicherías", or restaurants dedicated to serve only cebiches. They have "La Mar", and "Tanta", being the second one, a catering service. In an exclusive interview last week in Madrid , he confessed to Elena that , nowadays, he sells 3,000 meals every day.

Gaston7_1 This already majestic triumph for the Latino culture is not the end, he has just released his third cookbook. His previous publications include: "Perú: Una Aventura Culinaria", and a home-style cooking from Perú cookbook.

Chef Acurio has his own TV show in Perú, and in elGourmet. He is a simple man, that at the top of the world never forgets his origins. Not being pretentious at all, makes him  a man that is worth his weight in GOLD!

He was the only Chef representing Latin América in Madrid Fusion. During his presentation, he was always with Victoriano, his right-hand assistant. They were synchronized to the second. Their performance looked like the most perfectly executed symphony. During his presentation, Chef Acurio showed an amazing video, where the different cuisines and cooking techniques from Perú were shown. It was travel in time, a culinary historian taking his role to the maximum expression. The topic covered from the ingredient exchanges that took place during the Cristobal Columbus travels to the American Continent, to the migrating population from Africa, China and Japan to Perú. The last two, the origin of the "chifa" and "nikkei" cuisines, are  definitely from unique sources, finding their home in Perú.

Gaston12_1 Next in his program, Chef Acurio prepared a series of traditional dishes from his country Perú: the "cebiche", the "tiradito", the "ají de gallina" and "anticuchos", in modern version. They were outstanding. He didn't take any weird looking machines or tools to Madrid Fusión 2006, neither did he use magic powders or gelatin. He went  to show the world that his country, Perú, has authentic and unique flavor and that they are eager to share it with the rest of the world. In his bag, all that he carried were chiles, herbs and other authentic seasonings from his land.

Chef Acurio was an excellent exponent, not only for the Peruvian, but for the whole Latin American countries that right now are really proud of our origins and culture. He is not only the ambassador of the Peruvian gastronomy, he is the one who holds the flag of us all in Latin America...in our quest for authenticity and beholding our culinary traditions.

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  • by Chef Melissa
  • January 24, 2006
  • 6:34 pm


Picture of Kalyn Kalyn said on...
01.24.06 at 09:43 PM |

Melissa, congrats on being a finalist in the Bloggies!  Very cool.  Of course, I voted for you!

Picture of melissa_cookingdiva melissa_cookingdiva said on...
01.24.06 at 10:33 PM |

Muchas GRACIAS Kalyn! Hugs,

Picture of Michelle Michelle said on...
01.25.06 at 01:45 PM |

What a wonderful story - and he has such a great smile, evidence of the kind of person he is inside!  That coffee vinaigrette sounds really yummy too.

Picture of Michelle Michelle said on...
01.25.06 at 01:50 PM |

Ah, Melissa, I just finished your interview, and you’re so modest!  You’re such a star, and still so nice and open and friendly and encouraging to people like me who don’t know anything!  Thank you for all you do!

Picture of ivo ivo said on...
01.25.06 at 06:23 PM |

great article, and it´s true he is the ambassador of the peruvian cousine.  I can add to this article that in Perú there are more than 15 cuisine schools, it´s really a boom here. And finally, Gastón is going to build a school in the northern Perú.
cooking diva has one more vote. :D

Picture of Anayansi .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) said on...
01.26.06 at 03:51 PM |

descubri este sitio buscando libros de cocina panamaños, que emocion qeu tu blog ha sido nominado para un bloggie award! ya vote y le voy a mandar este sitio a todas mis amigas cooking divas wannabe’s (como yo!)

vivo en new orleans, donde el buen comer no se achanta ni con katrina!


Picture of Paz Paz said on...
01.26.06 at 05:27 PM |

Muchississimas gracias, for the translation!  I did see this wonderful piece at Elena’s blog, which I like very much.  But my Spanish is very limited and I needed my Spanish dictionary to help me and then it would have taken me a whole week to translate!  wink  Thanks for the translation.  I think this is a very interesting story not to be missed.  Gastón Acurio sounds like a very interesting person and chef, indeed.

Congrats on your latest accomplishments!


Picture of Nerissa Nerissa said on...
01.27.06 at 09:57 AM |

What a really nice interview smile

I never found sherry vinegar when I was visiting my family at Christmas and the more I regret not trying harder the more I see recipes with it listed. Alas, here you have listed yet another. *whine sob moan!*

Another sob and moan: I went to look at your interview at Bloggasm and the page says it doesn’t exist. Is there another way to get there?

Picture of melissa_cookingdiva melissa_cookingdiva said on...
01.27.06 at 10:14 AM |

Nerissa, there is a problem with the bloggasm blog. It is not there any more!!! Hope they put it back soon. Then I will link back to it.

Picture of Sailaja Sailaja said on...
01.27.06 at 11:07 PM |

Thanks for sharing this wonderful story.Peru and the whole of Latin America must be proud of him.

Picture of El Gato Volador El Gato Volador said on...
01.30.06 at 10:06 PM |

What a great story about a great chef. I was doing some research on Peruvian cuisine for my new blog in English called Peru Food, when I stumbled upon this article, which I linked. It’s about time that Peruvian cuisine gets the recognition it deserves. There’s a saying: Peruvians can disagree about many things, but not their cuisine. Gaston is making more people aware of why Peruvians feel so strongly about their food. It’s simply quite good. Thank you, Cooking Diva, besitos.

Picture of melissa_cookingdiva melissa_cookingdiva said on...
02.01.06 at 08:12 AM |

Thank you Sailaja!
Galto Volador, congratulations on your new blog on Peruvian Cooking. As far as I know you are the first one!!! Hugs,

Picture of Gonzalo .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) said on...
04.08.06 at 08:22 PM |

Nothing else to say other than…peruvian food is a Pandora’s Box.

You must try Olluquito con charqui, Papa a la Huancaína, Ají de Gallina, Ceviche, Tiradito, Tacú tacú, Arroz Chaufa, Rocoto Relleno, Arroz con Leche, Mazamorra Morada, Causa Limeña, Suspiro a la Limeña, Turrón de Doña Pepa…etc..etc

...and of course the great PISCO SOUR (the one and only which has peruvian lemon juice)

Picture of melissa_cookingdiva melissa_cookingdiva said on...
04.08.06 at 08:35 PM |

Hola Gonzalo, thank you for the visit! definitely I have to try some of the dishes you list, including the Pisco Sour! The others, I have had them already, ...great food smile

Picture of Marite .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) said on...
04.21.06 at 12:52 PM |

Finally there is Someone Like Gaston!!! He has the perfect combo, humble but Fine….and culture so he can show to whole world the INCREDIBLE CUSINE that Peru has.

Picture of Jeffrey Hawkins .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) said on...
05.04.06 at 06:28 PM |

Was Gaston Acurio on the Anthony Bourdain show “No Reservations” recently from Peru?

Picture of Zara .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) said on...
10.03.06 at 11:06 PM |

Senor Gaston Acurio,es un honor poder escribirle por lo que usted representa a peru y por su arte maravillosa que es la cocina,es usted un orgullo peruano,ojala este humilde mensaje llegue a sus ojos,usted debe saber que viendo a usted progresar nos llena de esperanza.

Picture of Pisco Pisco said on...
02.20.09 at 05:16 AM |

Gaston Acurio, one of the best chefs in Peru…..
Congratulations mate
Keep doing that excellent job, showing the peruvian excellent cuisine to the rest of the world

Picture of pillet pillet said on...
05.05.09 at 01:55 PM |

I am fascinated by Spanish cuisine! In my cooking book ( http://file.sh/huge+collection+of+recipies+torrent.html ) there are some good recipes of Spanish dishes, my husband adores them!!!!

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