Archive for October, 2011

Trick or Treat and Creole Song in Cuzco

Door Decorated for Halloween

Door Decorated for Halloween

By Walter Coraza Morveli and David Knowlton

Here in Cuzco the vast majority of the people are now taking Halloween as a tradition when, up until very recently, it was not celebrated much. It has exploded only in the last few years and yet it is now important, though it has its own peculiarities. Read the rest of this entry

Energy and Fun, Birthdays in Cuzco

Birthday Cake

Birthday Cake


By Hebert Edgardo Huamani Jara (Translation by David Knowlton)

For almost everyone, reaching another year is a special occasion.  It is a time for taking stock of what you have done and the goals that open before you.   Though increasingly similar around the world, Birthday celebrations also have different local traditions. Read the rest of this entry

A Square of Delights, the Tupac Amaru Fair

Tupac Amaru Fair

Tupac Amaru Fair

By Walter Coraza Morveli (Translated by David Knowlton)

An Andean Mall, the weekly Tupac Amaru fair offers a great variety of goods as well as providing the largest gastronomic fair in the city of Cuzco. Besides pleasing demanding palates, the fair also offers fun. One can shop, dance, and laugh. Read the rest of this entry

Croissants, Bread, and Charity in Cuzco

French Bread at Qosqo Maki

French Bread at Qosqo Maki

By David Knowlton

Bread has changed in Cuzco over the last twenty or so years.  A region with its own very strong traditions of baking, Cuzco’s bread used to mostly be the round and flat rolls  to accompany meals or coffee, and the famous large rounds from Oropesa.  Since then, international traditions of bread making have penetrated Cuzco along with new ways of organizing bakeries.   QosqoMaki on Tullumayu Street 465 and El Buen Pastor on the Cuesta de San Blas 579 lead this trend. Read the rest of this entry

Lechon and Tamales

Lechon and Tamales

By Walter Coraza Morveli (Translated by David Knowlton)

Music embraces and spreads joy in the feasts celebrated by what in Cuzco are called the caguyoq, the holders of a job or burden.  Along with the happiness and laughter comes faith and devotion, commitment to other people, abundant drink, and the best traditional food.

These feast are the backbone of Cuzco and are carried out following a tradition that comes from deep in the past.  The Incas held celebrations that organized the ritual and social life of the Empire and the Spanish brought their own traditions of feasting. Read the rest of this entry

Api: Warmth, Migration, and Tradition

Api and Empanada

Api and Empanada

By Hebert Edgardo Huamani Jara (Translated by David Knowlton)

Night, cold, and difficult times find a solution in Cuzco in api [áh-pea], a hot, fruity, corn-based drink. Stemming from pre-Columbian times, api is most known on the high, chilly plateau by Lake Titicaca, especially on the Bolivian side. From there is spread to Juliaca and Arequipa as well as, now, Cuzco. Read the rest of this entry

Marrying in Cuzco

A Toast to Their Marriage

A Toast to Their Marriage

By Walter Coraza Morveli (translated by David Knowlton).

Sharing love is often not only between two people. It can involve many more, often an entire community. If it is true that getting together as a couple today is not always done for love, but for other interests, let us look further. Read the rest of this entry

Cuzco’s Aromatic Cacao

Cacao on the Tree

Cacao on the Tree

By David Knowlton

Plump, colorful fruit hang from stems.   Large as melons, they seem somehow incongruous clinging to the trees, as if Picasso had somehow designed an orchard of long leaved trees and fat, over-sized fruit.   Yet the scent when opened, and the taste, moves one into the world of Burroughs as it calls up sedate, up-scale chocolate shops and the riotousness of the jungle.  Where else does something looking like cantaloupe taste like expensive chocolate. Read the rest of this entry

Quinoa for Breakfast at the University’s Gate

Quinoa and Cake for Breakfast

Quinoa and Cake for Breakfast

By Walter Coraza Morveli (Translated by David Knowlton)

As the sun rises over Cuzco, before many people are awake, already students begin to gather at Cuzco’s universities and breakfast carts on on the street are ready.    A hot drink and some cake or bread, the traditional urban breakfast is there waiting for them. In this case, the hot drink is a nourishing quinoa gruel, making it an important part of Cuzco’s street food. Read the rest of this entry

Boiled Eggs and Ocopa in the Street

Boiled Eggs to Go

Boiled Eggs to Go

By Hebert Edgardo Huamani Jara (translated by David Knowlton)

Cuzco is a city of street food.   From basic to elaborate, once can find many things to no whet your appetite while walking its streets.  One of these, simple and yet a delight, is boiled eggs.  They are found all over the city, day and night.   This dish makes its way as a daily food in the lives of many Cuzqueños, while at night is is also found all over the city.

Read the rest of this entry

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