Recipe: Huacatay Dip with Aji Amarillo

Posted by Kimberly in Food Friday, Recipes / 0 Comments

I’m going a little off topic today, but, to bring this back around to books, you would be your book club’s hero if you showed up to the next meeting with this dip.


My husband’s family is from Lima, Peru.  When we went to Lima to visit, his aunt taught me to cook some of their family favorites like Aji de Gallina, Papa a la Huancaina and Alfajores.  I’ve had fun practicing and perfecting these Peruvian dishes at home!

Last year, my husband and I went to Tanta, a Peruvian restaurant here in Chicago and they served us a wonderful dip with fresh plantain chips.  We asked the chef for the ingredients and then set out to recreate the recipe at home.  This recipe uses two of our favorite Peruvian ingredients – Huacatay and Aji Amarillo.

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Huacatay Dip with Aji Amarillo is cool and refreshing, but has a spicy kick to it.  It is delicious served as a dip with plantain chips, tortilla chips or cut up vegetables, but can also replace any sour cream based sauce with your main dishes.  It pairs well with chicken, fish and potatoes or anything else to which you’d like to add some creamy spicy flavor.

2 TB fresh minced onion
1 large clove fresh minced garlic
3 TB finely chopped Huacatay (Peruvian Black Mint)
1-2 TB Aji Amarillo (Peruvian hot pepper)
1-2 tsp vegetable oil
16 oz sour cream
Salt & Pepper to taste

Sauté the onion, garlic and a pinch of salt and pepper in the vegetable oil over medium low heat until softened (1-2 minutes). Turn off the heat and remove the pan from the burner.  While hot, stir in chopped Huacatay and Aji Amarillo and then let this mixture cool completely.

Once cooled, lightly fold mixture into 16 ounces of sour cream.  Add salt and pepper, just slightly less salt than you think it needs.  Return mixture to sour cream container and let sit in refrigerator at least 30 minutes to overnight.  The flavors will mingle and intensify as it sits.  You can make this up to a day in advance.  Take a little taste test before serving and add more salt if needed.

Note: Aji Amarillo is very spicy, so start with one tablespoon until you know how much heat you like. You can always add a little more!

Serve and enjoy!


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