Food Pairings for the National Drink of Peru: Pisco Sour
With National Pisco Sour Day approaching -- the first Saturday of February -- we thought we'd share not only a recipe for this national drink of Peru, but what to serve it with too. While pisco sours are served at just about every bar there is in Peru, these simple cocktails can also easily be enjoyed with a meal too, which guests can discover during our Peru cooking vacation.
First, the basics: while there are some variations on the recipe, traditional pisco sours are made with pisco (a potent grape brandy often with a tangy and fruity flavor), sugar, lemon or lime juice, and an egg white to bind all the flavors. This particular recipe comes from our Taste of Peru trip, which includes a cocktail class.
Place 4 measures of pure Quebranta Pisco (their recommended pisco choice), 1 measure of gum syrup, 1 measure of key lime juice, 1/8 of a measure of an egg white, and 4 ice cubes (in that order), in a cocktail shaker. Shake for 15 seconds, and then strain and serve in a chilled 8 ounce cocktail glass. Decorate the top of the drink with three drops of Angostura Bitters, a must in many Pisco Sour recipes.
Since the drink has a sour taste, the perfect dish to pair with it should come as no surprise, as its a national dish of sorts in Peru too: ceviche. The citrus notes in the ceviche -- as a result of the seafood being marinated in lime juice -- works perfectly with the flavors with the cocktail. Most seafood dishes, generally speaking, work well with the strong, and sweet, flavors of the pisco sour.
But what of pisco and pairings that go with the alcohol itself, rather than the national cocktail? The temperature of the pisco makes a difference, as does how it was produced. Again, most seafood dishes will work, whether its a scallop, tuna, or fish. But most meats, unless they're simply braised and perhaps cooked with wine, should most likely be avoided, as their flavor profiles might clash too much with the pisco.
Discover more about the national drink of Peru with a cooking vacation to this interesting and diverse country, which has been named time and time again as a top gastronomical destination in the entire world.
By Liz Hall