Papas a la Huancaina (Potatoes in creamy Peanut Sauce) is a whole, balanced meal in itself. The potatoes provide the starch and carbohydrates, the peanuts, eggs and cheese provide the protein, and slices of bell peppers and tomatoes provide the vegetable-derived vitamins and minerals. Not only good for you, Papas a la Huancaina is super delicious!
Papas a la Huancaina Recipe-
- 1/2 lb. toasted unsalted Spanish peanuts
- 8 large potatoes, peeled, boiled tender, and quartered
- 5 dried red chili peppers
- 1 large red bell pepper, cored, seeded, and sliced thin
- 1 cup of water
- 4 cups of milk
- 1 head of lettuce
- 4 hard boiled eggs, peeled and thick sliced
- 3 tsp. salt
- 6 oz. of Spanish white cheese, sliced, for accompaniment
- 1 large tomato, sliced, for accompaniment
- In a food processor or electric blender, puree the peanuts and milk together into a thick, saucy paste.
- Sauté the hot red chili peppers until the blacken and slightly toasted – but not charred. When they are well toasted, place them in a bag and pound on them enough to break them into tiny pieces. Do not try this bare handed – the oils from the peppers can cause skin rash and burning.
- In a large cooking pot, place the water, peanut paste, ground peppers, and salt to taste, bring to a boil, then reduce to a lively simmer, and cook for about 15 minutes until you have a congruous, thick, creamy sauce.
- To serve your Papas a la Huancaina, place a few boiled potato quarters on each serving plate. Ladle a generous portion of the creamy peanut sauce over the potatoes. Set a couple large leaves of fresh lettuce on the side, and top the creamed potatoes with some slices of bell pepper and hard boiled eggs. Have a plate of accompaniments set on the table: sliced cheese and tomatoes.
Note: Traditionally, Bolivians treat Papas a la Huancaina like a salad. Yes, you assemble the dish as described above, but they will usually chop it all up together, add some cheese slices and tomatoes – even black and/or green olives are liked, too – and chow down on the whole bunch of ingredients together.
Also to keep in mind: this peanut sauce tastes great with grilled meats, fish and seafoods, too!