Machu PicchuPhoto by Derek Kouyoumjian.

Best Latin American Food
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If there’s one thing Rosy Cerna wants people to understand about Peruvian cuisine, it’s that there’s not just one single Peruvian cuisine.

“Peru has 25 states and each has their own culture and food,” Cerna, a Peruvian native, explains. So it makes sense that she opened Machu Picchu for one simple reason: “Basically, I was missing my food from home.”

Order the leche de tigre (that’s “tiger’s milk”) and you’ll get a martini glass of shrimp and fish ceviche, the juice of which—according to tradition—is a cure for hangovers. “We have many people who go to the party on Saturday, and definitely on Sunday you have leche de tigre,” says Cerna. “I think it works, because I’ve tried it many times.”

Causa limeña is a traditional dish of mashed yellow potatoes layered with chicken, and its name comes from the indigenous Quechua language still spoken by a third of Peruvians, meaning “life” or “sustenance of life.” And Cerna’s favorite item from the brunch menu is the chicharrones, crispy fried pork with sweet potatoes and onion relish. It’s a real home-cooking dish, she says, and one that she enjoys.

This story originally appeared in the 2018 Scout’s Honored issue of Scout Somerville, which is available for free at more than 200 locations throughout the city or by subscription.

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