Saturday, March 22, 2014

7 Fantastic Peruvian Desserts, Candies, and Sweets

Updated 27 October 2017

I've got a huge sweet tooth. I love desserts, candies, and sweets. Here are my top picks for Peruvian sweets that you've got to try. Here are a ton of other Peruvian recipes

From Havanna
Manjar blanco (which is similar to caramel) is sandwiched between two butter cookies and the whole thing is sprinkled with powdered sugar. If you're in Peru, you can buy manjar in a bag. It's addicting. I could eat it straight off a spoon. They cost about 1 sol or 2, depending on the size.

I like mine without powdered sugar, since you can't claim not to have eaten all the alfajores when you have powdered sugar all over your chin and clothes. The chocolate ones are more common to Argentina and Uruguay, so if you want the real Peruvian version stick to the powdered sugar ones.

Here's a recipe for the regular ones and the chocolate ones. 

From Youtube
Besos de Moza
Literally translated it means, "the young lady's kisses". Moza is also slang for waitress in Peruvian Spanish. They have a graham cracker bottom and are filled with merigue and the whole thing is dipped in chocolate. They cost about 50 centimos. I love them! My all-time favourite dessert is a toss up between besos de moza and chocotejas.

I've been told these are originally a German dessert, but since they've been in Peru for over 50 years and I love them, they get included in this list. There are three flavours: vanilla, strawberry, and lucuma. Of course vanilla's my favourite flavour and the original one.

Here is a recipe for vanilla besos de mozas.

From La Teja
Chocolate and arequipe (which is dulce de leche, it's a bit thinner than manjar) make chocotejas. Yum! Sometimes you can buy these in little stores and restaurants. You can also buy them off the street from cholitas. I personally prefer to buy them from the cholitas and so that I know all the money is going to them. They cost about 50 centimos or 1 sol.

As far as I know, these are totally a Peruvian invention. They're absolutely wonderful. You've got to try them.

You can put all types of things in the manjar, such as pecans, raisins, coconut, grapes, peanuts, drunk raisins (raisins soaked in rum or pisco). Here's a recipe for chocotejas.

Leche Asada 
From LimaEasy
It's made of regular milk, eggs, and sugar. You can also add evaporated, condensed milk, vanilla, and cinnamon. It's a type of custard and it usually cost a couple soles. Although asada means roasted, it's also slang for pissed off, angry, or irritated.

Asada means baked; (it's also Peruvian slang for angry). According to some people it's a Chilean dessert, but we all know that Peruvians and Chileans have on-going arguments about what's theirs. Here's a recipe for leche de asada. Be sure to try it out, it's a great way to end a meal.

Similar to donuts, these sweets are a deep fried ring. The dough has sweet potatoes pumpkin in it along with a handful of other ingredients. Those making picarones make it look very easy to make a perfect ring as they casually toss a ball of dough into a vat of boiling oil. Topped with a thin molasses syrup, picarones are so sweet it's hard to eat very many, but that never stopped me from trying! With that being said, whenever I heard the picarones man in the street I quickly ran down the stairs to get some. Here's a good recipe for picarones.

Suspiro de Limeña 
From Peruvian Cuisine

Literally translated into "a woman's (from Lima) sigh" it has a caramel bottom and is topped with meringue and sprinkled with sugar. It's a very rich, sickly sweet dessert that's hard to finish by yourself, so enlist a friend.

The name alone tells you that it's a Peruvian dessert through and through. While you can easily make it on your own, the next time you're in Lima you should give it a try.

Here's a recipe for suspiro de Limeña. You can also add some liqueur to the recipe as well.

From Taringa

Doña Pepa is one of the most popular turrones. Made from layers of cookies and honey and then topped with hard candies, you'll find turrones everywhere during Christmas. Don't put it in the fridge or else the honey will stick to the paper and it's practically impossible to get the paper off. Here's a recipe for turron. You'll need a lot of ingredients though.

More Info
Here are some more posts that might interest you.
If you're interested in finding out more about Peruvian gastronomy, check out The Fire of Peru and Gaston Acurio's cookbook. There are also lots of Peruvian remedies that use traditional Peruvian foods.


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