Peruvian sauces are famous and there are literally hundreds of them. These two are extremely popular and for good reason, they are phenomenal.
The first Peruvian sauce just means green chili or sauce and is called aji verde. It is made with a touch of aji amarillo paste along with some chilies, cilantro, cheese, garlic, mayonnaise and oil and vinegar. It is simple to just whiz up in your blender. The sauce will last for up to a week in the refrigerator so you can easily make both of these sauces ahead of time. They could be used on just about anything but on pollo a la brasa, the split roasted chicken they are exceptional.
The second Peruvian sauce called aji huacatay is made with a huacatay paste which comprises what is also known as black mint. It has a somewhat pungent flavor but combined with the other ingredients makes this sauce superb! Huacatay is a member of the marigold or tarragon family and is indigenous to Peru. The flavor lies somewhere between mint and basil. It is difficult to explain but I highly recommend you try it. Both aji amaraillo paste and aji huacatay paste can be found in most Latin markets or you can pick them up by clicking on the name/link through Amazon.
Trust me if you make these two Peruvian sauces along with the pollo a la brasa, you will fully understand why Peruvian cuisine is now considered to be one of the best in the world.
Did you know that Peru grows over 3000 types of potatoes? If you would like to learn more about this amazing country be sure to check out "Our Journey to Peru." You can also get more authentic Peruvian recipes. If you make either of these Peruvian sauces, be sure to let me know how much you loved it in the comments below!
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Peruvian Sauces Aji Verde & Aji Huacatay
for the aji verde sauce:
- 2 fresh jalapenos or serrano roughly chopped
- 1 Tablespoon aji amarillo paste see note below
- 1 cup fresh cilantro leaves and stems
- 2 Tablespoons grated cotija cheese or Parmesan cheese
- 1 medium garlic clove minced
- 1 Tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1 teaspoon white vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon juice from 1 lime
- 1/2 cup mayonnaise
- Kosher salt and freshly ground
For the huacatay sauce:
- 2 cloves garlic chopped
- 2 Tablespoons Vegetable oil
- 3 scallions roughly chopped
- 2 Tablespoons aji amarillo paste
- 2 Tablespoons huacatay paste
- 1/2 cup mayonnaise
- 3 Tablespoons chopped cilantro
- Salt and pepper to taste
Instructions for the Aji Verde
- Combine jalapenos, aji amarillo, cilantro, cotjia, garlic, oil, vinegar, and lime juice in a blender. Blend on high speed until smooth paste form.
- Add mayonnaise and blend until homogeneous.
- Transfer to a bowl and season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve with grilled chicken.
- Unused sauce can be stored in a covered container for up a week in the refrigerator.
For the Aji Huacatay
- Heat the oil in a small skillet and saute. the garlic over medium low
- In a blender Add the garlic oil, scallions, mayonnaise, aji amarillo, huacatay and cilantro and blend until smooth
- Season with salt and pepper and refrigerate until ready to use.