Ummm…Papa a la whooo? That’s what you’re thinking, right? Well, that’s why I’m here; to explain, you see. I grew up on this stuff. I remember as a kid my mother making this sauce and me sneaking cubes of queso fresco. I was pretty creative with the stuff and used to put it on everything from chicken to potato chips. In Peru, where my mother was born, this is a pretty common appetizer–it’s sort of like their version of veggies and dip.
I’ve started exploring dishes of my childhood lately; probably because I get a little homesick from time to time. Living away from home makes me want to be there even more. I also think it’s about this time in ones life where you begin to look back a bit. Being a kid was so cool. It was cozy; no bills, no worries, no pretending about being a real adult. Being an adult sucks. I want nothing to do with it. So in protest I’ve decided to make a bunch of this sauce and dip it in potato chips. So there.
Papas a la Huancaina
From Mom’s Kitchen
2 pieces of romaine
6 medium potatoes boiled
1 hard boiled eggs
4 black olives
FOR THE SAUCE:
1 pack of 12 oz. El Venadito Queso Blanco (if you can’t find it, you can always use feta)
1 habanero (you’re supposed to use peruvian yellow peppers but i can never find them)
1 can 5 oz. carnation evaporated milk
salt and pepper to taste
1 teaspoon of tumeric
1/3 vegetable oil
4 saltine crackers (use last)
You can use a food processor or blender. Cut the Queso Blanco in cubes and throw them in the blender along with the evaporated milk, salt and pepper, tumeric, and vegetable oil. Blend until smooth. TIP: If the consistency is a bit too thick, then add a tablespoon of vegetable oil until it’s just right. If it’s too thin, then crumble a saltine cracker in your hand and add to the sauce. Play with it until the consistency is nice and thick.
Peel and slice potatoes and arrange on top of lettuce. Pour sauce on top of potatoes and place slices of boiled eggs and black olives around potatoes.