March 6, 2022

Par II Discovering Delectable Peru with Ericka


In part two Ericka takes us deeper into the culture, cuisine and chefs of Peru. Ericka also introduces us to some local vendors in the markets of Lima and Peru. 

Ericka La Madrid was born in Lima, Peru and moved to US at age of 18.
With studies on International Business administration and Marketing.
She founded Delectable Peru Food Tour that is a unique and interactive tour company exploring the culinary capital of South America – Lima, Peru. Founded in mid-2012, the project started in 2010 when the company’s founder arrived back to her home country only to discover that Peru’s culinary landscape had evolved.

Connect to Ericka:  https://delectableperu.com/

Connect to Voice4Chefs: https://www.voice4chefs.com/

Support the show (https://www.buymeacoffee.com/MichaelDugan)

Transcript

Michael Dugan:

Why don't you give a shout out to a couple of restaurants that don't, that aren't famous but that you really think should be heard?

Ericka La Madrid:

Okay, let's say number ones that I really recognize in the whole, you know, list or anything like that is one in particular that is in the market and is for many years I would say more than 10 years. This guy and his family in working in the smallest turn in the in the market, you know, because Surquillo Markett and this is funny because I met just go into the market to get my fish or to get fruits and I was walking around and see these beautiful in the small very clean fish stand and then I meet the sister for us is Mariella relation now we're very close to her to every time, you know go to the market and need to visit her and have her on that while we did everything we try to be careful and keep our distance by this tell like it's a lovely lady that just what can you do the biggest smile even even? We will see her as my own the heart she transferred all her love. And just like oh welcome to the market. Like we sell fish here variety of seafood. And that's what I learned is like they started selling like seafood or fish right in the smallest time inside the market. And then the brother came to her to help her and then he started like, oh, I can make some you know soup and dishes and see if they would like to to kind of like eat over here so this like okay, let's do it. And then the sistert was kind of support and brother and you're by later on he get very popular in the market and then he get one of the stands and then that's when he started cooking and also is one of the best Ceviche's. He started with that then they get another stand and then another stand so people can see them on the table but inside them you know it's kind of a shairing the space. A few years ago he had his own restaurant, so I will say and he's his restaurant name is El-Cevichano. And that's the name of his restaurants too. So that's how you know I feel like these are small places and you know it's not that fancy or like many people buy the area, the neighborhood the people around you probably know him already. But things like that is like Wow, this place not many people know locals know these places. Right? And like him another lady that is also part of the market that become a whole restaurant is like our lady who sell Anticuchos the Anticuchos are a stick with the heart of the of the cow. So and the same stories like that. This woman we can't like you know a small kids started selling the Anticuchos in the street little corner. And yes, little by little you know, it can superstar you know, selling and the Anticuchos and have her own restaurant. And like I say stories like that. Millions probably but it's just amazing this as a whole wow you know how they make that you know if reality but yeah, things like that love every time that I visited and learn about somebody who is like making like their dreams come true. You know working hard.

Michael Dugan:

Oh definitely. So I have an idea. You just joined our Facebook group and I'm really honored that you did the voice for chefs Facebook group. Why don't you post some of these restaurants in the Facebook groups and they can find out more about you as well. I think that would be really amazing to share that because those are special. You know, those are really special things that if you're coming to Lima, I you know, to know about that and to be able to connect with people around that. I think it's just really special. Thank you. Thank you so

Ericka La Madrid:

much. Like a legacy. I'm honored to, you know, have the opportunity to meet so many wonderful people in my life. I'm thankful like just being here, you know, talking to you and tell you a little bit about what I do.

Michael Dugan:

I think you have a great career and you know it. It's interesting how you fell into it. But as you were going along and becoming gourmet food tour owner and travel owner with your delectable Peru. Did you run into any challenges anything that was really tough. To overcome? We call them forks in the road.

Ericka La Madrid:

Sure. A like you said the first thing is like people understand.

Michael Dugan:

Okay, right. The communication Okay, so very cool. What kept you going? What kept you saying, You know what, I'm not going to give up. Because I mean, I don't give up on things. This podcast. I said, I'm not giving up. I'm just not giving up. It's going to happen. And it did. But what kept going.

Ericka La Madrid:

The passion of sharing Peru with the world. With everyone that is like the first thing that I will come you know, the first thing. I will say am Peruvian that's what we have in we have two thousand potatoes and things like that I think comes just so natural. It's probably part of me even without work in the field, the restaurants I feel like this passion this love that I feel every time. That you see you my face is gonna be with a smile because I'm talking what I love. That is my country's my roots and the people I love. I think that keeps me going and believe me it was not easy just for net winnings hard for everyone I know. Us in particular in the whole travel Where trying to figure out the ways and and transform and kind of see the ways to promote people in the markets or promote products or chocolates or something. To kind of you know, diversify our services because it was no good not possible to be in front of people even to travel places. So I knew it was going to be hard but I was calling out and you know, talking with people trying to do our best to support each other and have faith that you know, things will not stay the same forever. And that little by little is you know a couple of weeks. Prove me that it's possible that things will change for the best and see restaurants you know activated and I see chef that keep up you know, like standing there and waiting for a bit because I know everyone is you know, I don't need to pay monthly rent, you know, because my office but I know restaurants and stuff like that they're like in red because I know it's difficult for them. I admire that and if I can do something to support that and help them

Michael Dugan:

I knew when I met you that that's what you were about. And you know to me that is that's the greatest gift you can give is to is to reach out and help other people in need.

Ericka La Madrid:

I think that's part of our passion. Right? Like, to me the leading, we are in the hospitality industry. So our work is not just think about ourselves, but think about the others. Others about how they make them feel good and how you can support you know, making the feel like you were taking care of of things. So I feel like that's the speaking people let chefs, people in the travel everywhere. I feel like they're standing there because they know it's going to be a time where things are coming back to you know what it was probably the same but a little bit you know that we can continue

Michael Dugan:

so another question and then we're gonna get to cooking. What would you say that's not related to food are five things that you have to see in Lima.

Ericka La Madrid:

And Lima in the city. You know, Lima is called the, I want to say correctly. The city of the kings. Because of the whole Colonial Spanish influence, right? So one of my favorite things to do is go to Lima Center, admire the whole architecture, the colonial capital, the capital.

Michael Dugan:

Oh my gosh, I went to the capital that was amazing.

Ericka La Madrid:

Then they're like the balconies with the wood balconies.

Michael Dugan:

Design. Oh,

Ericka La Madrid:

The first thing like our face go to the city to the downtown Lima. Yes, I've served the whole structure like it's like it was just for yourself to colonial times as see like the beautiful buildings and the balconies that are made with wood with these details. Just the cathedral is sitting in the middle of the plaza is called Lima Plaza Mayor. Just checking around you is kind of a youre in a story time or something like that because it's kind of transporting yourself to those times on the Spanish or the Colonial where you see this beautiful, tall cathedral that is like it's unbelievable.Like this is the reference region of the view and be considered when you have the Palace. The President Palace right. And you have the opportunity to see like also around 12. No but most of the times are 12 they have the change of the guards. Okay me the whole you know that's what they do around 12 and then the other buildings that is like the municipal building like that that are like just amazing to see that will be one and the museum's of course a part of the history we have like the catacombs to see a another awesome Museum is the Lanco museum they are like oh, please file a colonial like so much history just in there that make you feel like you're looking say at transporting yourself to history I live like by of me I like history to walk in history, just thinking about all the part of the school where we learn about Incas about like the Spanish colonization, like the whole history that come together. My kids right now they don't understand. Like I'm friends like when I go to museums, I'm at my all about me. It's like this is you know, kind of what I have when I was little. And yeah, museums Miraflores. Another thing I love to do is a walk around the Malecon. I think we talk about these around to the face of the Pacific Ocean. Probably also in the top things to do walk around the Malecon where you have the view of the Pacific Ocean is called the Malecon and Costa Verde where they like the ocean.

Michael Dugan:

That's what we did it that's what my friend's brother. He took us there I was amazing. I loved it. Oh my gosh.

Ericka La Madrid:

One of the five that you asked me. Also is visiting Barranco. This is a bohemian area that I think probably you you told me you did. This is like a very relaxing place where you see art around you a lot of writers, artists live in that area. And also it's like, just beautiful to be around and walk on among the plaza around Malecon around a place called like the Bridge of Sighs.

Michael Dugan:

Ah, ah,

Ericka La Madrid:

Many couples you know that visit us. You hold your breath you know since the beginning and then until you craft your call the grid, man he's like you promise to love me forever. Like, just just hear it. No, no, I'm not going with you . Ha Ha Ha Let me do it with my best friend. Oh, it seems like you're like it's so funny. So those are my favorite things to do.

Michael Dugan:

There's one more that I remember and I don't know what it's called. But I remember these fountains and they were colored fountains all over this park in Lima. And they're shooting all kinds of colors. The rainbow. It was that was really fun.

Ericka La Madrid:

Yeah, that's beautiful. And that's called a blanket the Agua the Aguais the water.

Michael Dugan:

Lima center. Yeah, he took us there that was

Ericka La Madrid:

Oh, yes, that's another area very touristic, like, really inside the city. But I will say the most popular ones that many tourists go that I always recommend is go wherever you feel safe and comfortable. But I that was really fun. And the food Yeah, we went to Miraflores will say Miraflores and I see the Barranco. La Victoria is where like I will say a lot of restaurants a lot of hard working people. And it's just kind of like you know, try to be in the places where you can have access to visit not just the same thing. Just try to kind of open your your areas but always you know, that's good with a local with somebody who knows . where you're going.

Michael Dugan:

But what was special about Mira Florence, we went there specifically to have this amazing Peruvian buffet and they had dances and almost like they were doing the play. That was incredible because you got to see this authentic Peruvian food and try all these different foods from all over Peru and I'll never forget that experience. That was something we did I think it was at the Marriot. Actually,

Ericka La Madrid:

Probably that you mentioned the dance could be the La Maquina. Could be another place where have oppurtunity to see typical dances. That's a whole other part for another episode about music and you can talk about it through many singers or many songwriters you know.

Michael Dugan:

If we were to travel, and you were thinking of traveling, other than Peru, where would you go in the world would you travel to?

Ericka La Madrid:

I have a few places that I never been yet and like I say if you also we talked about this influence, you know, we did in in our scene, that is the fusion of Japan and Peru and and if you hear about these various Nikkei, so these Nikkei will come from the history and the immigration so the Nikkei is called somebody who came from like a family with families you know, and they pour into so that's always called me Kay but also the fusion with Peruvian Japanese is called Nikkei. So with that, I will say Japan is a place that I want to go. Yes for food of course but to learn more about the whole history and the communities and I I have actually conversations with people from Japan and they always mentioned Peru, and I'm so amazed they know so much about Peru and also that we have so many friends that are you know, families and their great grandparents are from the Japan. So we crossed so much information out there. So I will say that would be my top place to go and not just for the footer you mentioned for the history but also now that I'm in love for with hikes some like planning something about hiking.

Michael Dugan:

Come to Seattle, come visit us in Seattle we have really known from around the world, the Pacific Northwest.

Ericka La Madrid:

Also for I know you have a beautiful fish market so it's something I happen

Michael Dugan:

They throw fish at the fish market.

Ericka La Madrid:

Exactly. And now another place that I want to go is Greece. Because Okay, also the history in Morocco.

Michael Dugan:

Oh Morocco. Yeah.

Ericka La Madrid:

Because it's my was the food and the markets. So yeah, I have a long list to go and like also these food tour operators like the community is so big we connect with people actually already have a list of places like and friends learn that to food tours, for example. And we connect already because you know when you can go to Peru went to culinary tour next year. People who are like us, they always want to go places for the food. So we have connections, like I say from all over because we want to recommend okay, this person immediately you have the person in mind because social media things are for social media connections, then you think about this person and the tours they offer. So we cannot interact that way because we recommend other people that do the same.

Michael Dugan:

That's great. That's great.

Ericka La Madrid:

So I'm happy that we can were able to do this directly at times like this.

Michael Dugan:

Okay, so I know you're not a chef, but you love food and I'm sure very good cook. Is there any time is there any time you had a kitchen disaster worth just did not work and something really went wrong?

Ericka La Madrid:

What happened with that? I think but in particularly. I'm a very Yeah, I mentioned before this passion but also I need to be with the mood of cooking like I know that that come from love, right? I need to have a good mood too. If I'm like no. And we have those days we are human so we have those days that you don't even want to talk with anybody. So in that way I prefer not to cook it's not gonna be good. It's not gonna be with love. It's going to be serious. So that yes with that, and for me the cleaning my kids Oh my daughter and my son they know that I'm a way that cook clean keep things clean. So that the other thing trolleys disaster when we start doing like cake and the flour go all over that will be a disaster. We manage with the kids. Exactly. Sometimes it's bad but they unhappy they also enjoy cooking. They learned so many Peruvian dishes and they're, you know, they enjoy doing that.

Michael Dugan:

That's great. That's great. If you were stuck on a desert island, what one dish that's it doesn't have to be Peruvian. It can be Japanese, it could be anything. What one dish would you want to have on a desert island.

Ericka La Madrid:

You can have water and one dish. Ceviche I would say. I like soup is fresh is salty but also like I said he makes so much flavor and fresh. In general. I feel like it's a dish that has so many components you know, you know this the dish need to have fish but also the sweet potato in this side and corn and live in the It's nothing I love to put in there it's Canchita there is a kind of corn that looks like popcorn but there's this the seed of the popcorn like the little thing, but then it's crunchy. So that for me is so many components in this Ceviche and then they give Ceviche and you can make so many plates just with the sauce. You know the lime salt and pepper. And I do a little couple extra ingredients that make it so delicious here and ginger. I need to send you that. Maybe we can cook

Michael Dugan:

Oh that would be wonderful.

Ericka La Madrid:

Yes

Michael Dugan:

As we as we wrap up today. Is there anything that you could share with people about if they were interested in becoming a tour guide? What advice could you give them so that they could be successful?

Ericka La Madrid:

Well, I will say you know just follow your heart and your Tummy. And if you have a dream to show your country or to show your culinary not just your talents but what is around you? Yes make you know start writing why would it be different to offer in try to make like something that you have a local, extra special. I feel like everyone that this is like a place you want to discover and seek something that is not same same they went to kind of discover something unique something different so every time deliver believe it or not. I don't do like repetitive tours, which many people is like yeah, you You seem to say no, I think about everybody's different everybody wants different things. So I try to accommodate and and do something extra special for each traveler. Imagine that.

Michael Dugan:

You're not expecting this but I'm going to share this. So on your site. I saw a testimonial from Ruth and I wanted to share it with the audience. Ruth says I highly recommend delectable tours when in Lima. The food in Peru is unique and Erica will show you the best places to appreciate the wide variety of foods. She provides a sampling of many drinks and delicacies introduces you to chefs and will tailor will tailor your tour to your specific request. Quite an amazing experience. This is a memorable to have. This is a memorable way to immerse yourself in the Peruvian cuisine. Thank you, Erica. How does that make you feel?

Ericka La Madrid:

Oh I like Yes. We don't worry. Oh my goodness. Thank you so much. I didn't read that from you know my heart. I always say this. I do it with so much care. Like Thank you. Thank you for that. I know I've read it sometimes like I feel so inspired every day turn red. I'm so happy that people feel like that way.

Michael Dugan:

You really have affected a lot of people in a very positive way. You know I can see it in the reviews. And I can just see it in how you explain what you do. The last thing is how, how do our listeners find you?

Ericka La Madrid:

Oh, thank you, Michael. Well, we have the website that is www delectableperu.com. If you search for my name or my company that is Delectable Peru you will find me but also my my email is info@delectableperu.com. But I always try to be very personal so if the guy is myself connecting with them as put it to them with a driver the next door but I'm always very responsive, like to the people that request my service.

Michael Dugan:

So I want to leave everyone with a quote. It's by Julia Child who is one of my lifetime idols. And she says people who love to eat are always the best people. What does that mean to you?

Ericka La Madrid:

That now you remind me that's one of my favorite quotes through it's so true. It's fun people his people is always happy, but but always discovering something good that they always want to try adventures. This is for another episode. When you met somebody that traveled to another country, immediately the experts. They become these kinds of tour guides because they want to show others what they discover. So it's something that we find in common people that love food and experience like that. They become food tour guides because they want to show others what they discovered.

Michael Dugan:

That is so true. And you know, Julia Child was such an inspiration for the world

Ericka La Madrid:

totally true

Michael Dugan:

Well, I want to thank you Erica for coming on voice for chefs today. It was such a pleasure to have you and you are truly a voice for Peru and a voice for chefs.

Ericka La Madrid:

Thank you Michael. Thank you so much. Very happy to be here talking to you and thank you for the work you're doing the conversations make you feel like you're close to people.

Michael Dugan:

Well, thank you.