Peruvian potatoes with spicy yellow cheese sauce

Peruvian potatoes with spicy yellow cheese sauce

Papa a la Huancaina

By
From
South American Grill
Serves
8
Photographer
Bonnie Savage

Papa a la Huancaina is a Peruvian-style potato salad originating from and named after the city Huancayo. It is traditionally made using boiled potatoes but here the potatoes are baked in parcels on the barbecue until crisp and golden brown. Topped with a thick and creamy cheese sauce made bright yellow and spiced with the Peruvian chilli, aji amarillo, it has a lovely lingering warmth.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 brown onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, chopped
2-3 tablespoons aji amarillo paste, (see note)
150g queso fresco, roughly chopped, (see note)
1 cup evaporated milk
1kg red or purple potatoes, cut into 2.5 cm cubes
olive oil, for drizzling
2 hard-boiled eggs, peeled and quartered, to serve
1/4 cup black olives, pitted, to serve

Method

  1. To make the yellow cheese sauce, heat the vegetable oil in a medium-sized frying pan over low–medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook until softened. Add the aji amarillo paste and cook until fragrant. Remove from the heat, allow to cool slightly, then transfer to a food processor and process until smooth. Add the queso fresco and continue to process to make a coarse paste. Gradually pour in the evaporated milk and ¼ cup water and process to make a smooth thick sauce. Transfer to a small bowl and set aside.
  2. Preheat a gas or charcoal barbecue to medium.
  3. Cut two pieces of foil, large enough to wrap the potato in two batches. Divide the potato among the foil pieces and drizzle with olive oil. Wrap to seal and enclose the potato.
  4. Place the parcels on the grill plate or bury in hot coals and cook for 30–45 minutes, turning occasionally, until the potatoes are tender. Insert a skewer through the foil and into the potatoes to test if they are done.
  5. To serve, unwrap the potato parcels and transfer to a large serving bowl. Drizzle with the prepared sauce and scatter with the boiled egg and olives. Serve hot with grilled meat, chicken or fish.

Note

  • Amarillo chillies are Peruvian hot yellow chillies. Aji amarillo paste can be sourced from Latin American food stores. Alternatively, seed and soak dried amarillo chillies in just enough boiling water to cover, then drain and blend to a purée. You can substitute ½ yellow capsicum, 1 bird’s eye chilli and 1 teaspoon ground turmeric for the aji amarillo paste, if necessary.

Note

  • Queso fresco, or ‘fresh cheese’, is a firm white South American cheese made from cow’s milk or a combination of cow’s and goat’s milk. Substitute goat’s cheese if unavailable.
Tags:
South American Grill
Rachael
Lane
South American
Latin
grill
bbq
barbecue
barbeque
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