Student - January 26, 2012

Exotic and cheap

IxESN's International Kitchen has been going ten years now, and has become a popular monthly event. The secret: it combines cuisine with culture, and it's cheap. On 12 January, ten Peruvian students led by Laura Espinoza kicked off the 2012 season.

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The Peruvians have tackled it professionally and turned the KSV clubhouse into a chic restaurant, all decked out for a three course dinner. Colourful balls of ‘tricolore' mashed potato are arrayed on shiny dishes. The secret of this recipe lies in ‘Aji Amarillo', a little Peruvian pepper brought back from Peru specially for the occasion by one of the cooks. Apart from this they had to do some improvising with the ingredients, Myluska explains. Besides, she says, you have to adjust the dishes to western tastes: not too sharp or exotic.
Cultural experience
The international evenings are extremely popular. If you want to join you have to book in good time, because there is only space for 100 diners. This time there were at least 160 hopefuls. There are a few biotechnologists among the lucky ones tonight. For them the International Kitchens are more than just a cheap night out with friends. What they really come for is the culinary and cultural experience. ‘I like to be surprised by new tastes', says one of them. ‘The cooks give a presentation about their country, and that makes the dinners extra-special', says another.
The presentation surprises some with the information that Peru is known for its haute cuisine. Lizeth from neighbouring Bolivia knew that already, but she came this evening to get a little taste of home. Who is cooking for the next International Kitchen? That is still a surprise.

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