Sunday, September 11, 2011

Cuy..It's What's For Dinner!

A unique dish served in Peru also happens to be a beloved pet for many people around the world.  As a Spanish teacher, I had to order this infamous guinea pig treat or be ridiculed by my peers. In my previous post, I wrote about the Huancaro Festival serving fresh guinea pig at the county faire.  It was hard for me to imagine a people eating guinea pig like most people eat steak and potatoes. However, cuy(or cui) was what was for dinner.  Did you know that this dish is what Jesus ate at his last supper?  A church in Cuzco has this huge painting as proof!!

It was hard for me to see or eat the entire body of the animal so my friends shared with me this Peruvian delicacy.  The meat itself tasted okay....although there wasn't much of it on the bones.  I had difficulty eating it because of my personal experiences with guinea pigs.  My family had them for pets and we grew to love our little friends.  Here in Cuzco and Machu Picchu, it was common to find people with pens of them in their homes.....but not as pets:(  At the Huancaro festival, they sold pamphlets on how to raise guinea pigs as a food source.  I bought one and now have my students read it as an authentic piece of literature from my collections of work from around the world.  Their faces are priceless.  Culture shock in the classroom. 
I snapped a shot of these poor little souls at the Huancaro festival.  They sold 2 guinea pigs for 10 soles.  What a deal!!  So if this post is making you sick, I shouldn't tell you about their beverage using frogs as a medicinal drink.  However, it is my job as a Spanish instructor to know everything there is to know about my work.  It's one of the perks(or challenges) of my job.  Would you eat cuy(or cui) if someone offered it to you?
PS.  My Machu Picchu post can be found here.  This was posted last year.  I forget to put in older links at times:)


  1. lol I would with the same state of mind as you... but in Europe we eat rabbit, duck, frog...

  2. the picture does not open the appetite I must say...

  3. OMG, they really eat them? and you did! I have them as pets too, and i can't eat or taste even a pinch. I wont eat cats or dogs as well. So where is your post at Machu Pichu, that is one of the places in my dreams and fantasy. I hope to reach it in this lifetime.

  4. Yes I did. I couldn't anything afterwards:) Here's the link on Machu Picchu from last year.
    I forget to put some of these links in at times.

  5. Oh my. I love your trip photos and stories.. until this? Oh my. Buzzy, my pet guinea pig, is safe in his cage home. SAFE. Not for dinner. OK?

    Love your adventures!


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