Since my early days in Peru, I heard about the pachamanca, a special dish from la sierra that consists of several kinds of food cooked underground by heated rocks. The process begins at my friend Diego's house in La Molina, one of Lima's suburban districts.
First, we grind up corn for humitas, to which we add cheese or sugar and wrap in a corn husk.
We filled this a few times over-- it takes a lot of hands in this delicious ordeal.
Throwing in some potatoes or rocks.
Now, the heated rocks are removed so that layer of food can begin.
We start with the meat-- beef, pork, chicken-- you could really put anything. Looks like a delicious huacatay marinade!
Now, we layer the humitas, potatoes, and sweet potatoes.
Diego is ready to place another layer of hot rocks.
Husks, bananas, more rocks.....
At last, lots of earth and the cross (of course). Pachamanca comes from the words "pacha"- Earth, and "manca"-earthen pot.
Now, we must wait!
Mmm... the wait was well worth it. Here's a sweet humita, hot from the Earth.