A Papa Rellena is essentially a stuffed potato. It is a common criollo snack or appetizer that utilizes that famous Andean ingredient, the potato, and is served all around Peru and quote common in other parts of South America and the Caribbean as well.
-2.2 lb (1 kg) white potatoes
-4 eggs (1 fresh and 3 hardboiled)
-6 tbsp oil
-1 lb ground beef
-1 cup chopped onion
-½ cup tomato, diced, peeled and seeded
-6 black olives, diced
-1 garlic clove, minced
-1 tbsp paprika
-1 tbsp minced parsley
-1 tbsp minced cilantro
-¼ cup raisins
1.) Wash potatoes and place them in a medium size pan with salt water. Bring to a boil and cook until soft.
2.) Cook until soft and then remove from water and peel.
3.) Mash potatoes and let cool. Add one egg and knead mixture into a sort of dough.
4.) Heat 2 or 3 tablespoons of oil in a large skillet. Add the onion and garlic and let brown. Add ground beef and tomatoes and cook for five minutes. Next add parsley, cilantro, olives, hardboiled eggs and raisins. Season with salt, pepper, and paprika.
5.) Spread flour on a smooth surface and get it all over your hands.
6.) Grab a fistful of the mashed potato mixture and pack it into a smooth ball. Make a hole in one end of the ball and form a sort of oval cup with thin but sturdy walls around the hole.
7.) Place one tablespoon of filling into the hole and fold the open end around it. Dip the croquette into beaten egg and then coat with flour. Repeat the process until the ingredients are used up.
8.) Heat 3 or 4 tablespoons of oil in a medium pan and fry papas until golden brown.
9.) Serve with Salsa Criolla.
Makes 8 servings.
How to Make Salsa Criolla
Mix following ingredients in a small bowl:
-1 sliced red onion
-1.2 tbsp vegetable oil
-1/2 seeded and sliced Ají Amarillo
-2-3 sprigs worth of chopped cilantro and parsley
-Juice of 1 Key or Peruvian Lime
-Salt to taste
Makes ¾ cup.
Writer and photographer Nicholas Gill is the editor/publisher of New World Review. He lives in Lima, Peru and Brooklyn, New York. His work has appeared in publications such as the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, CondeNast Traveler, National Geographic Traveler, Afar, and Penthouse. Visit his personal website (nicholas-gill.com) for more information.