Chile’s typical foods are a mixture of ingredients and techniques from Spanish cuisine, the gastronomy of Chile’s indigenous cultures, the Andean highlands and later influences from other European countries.
Based on roasted alpaca or llama meat; charqui or preparations such as chairo, meat with vegetables and chuño potatoes; or guatia, meat with chicken, potatoes in their skins and ground corn steamed underground. In the low valleys (500 - 2500 m.a.s.l.) and foothills (2,500 - 3,500 m.a.s.l.), the Aymara people developed an intense agriculture based on the production of corn, potato, locoto, pumpkin, oca. In some altiplanic areas with microclimate (commune of Colchane) they cultivated quinoa and potato.
The typical food of the Central Zone of Chile is strongly influenced by the contribution of the crops grown by the indigenous peoples that inhabited the area. Thus, the dishes of the central zone are characterized by presenting among its ingredients, corn, vegetables, legumes, potatoes, mushrooms and poultry, beef and pork, from Spain.
One of the greatest influences on the cuisine of southern Chile is that left by the Mapuche people, who contributed important foods such as potatoes, corn, beans, seafood, fish and Mapuche chicken. In addition, from the island of Chiloé it is also possible to identify important influences, with its peas, pine nuts, luche, cochayuyo, among others.
Livestock, especially sheep, has been one of the fundamental economic activities of the Magallanes region. For this reason, among its typical dishes is the Magellanic lamb baked in a wood oven, a delicacy that is cooked with the same patience and tranquility of its inhabitants.
The typical food of Rapa Nui is based mainly on marine products, such as fish, among which tuna, mahi mahi, sierra or kana kana stand out, and seafood such as lobster, shrimp and monkfish, a smaller type of lobster native to the island. However, several agricultural products are a fundamental basis of the diet, such as sweet potato, taro, yam, banana and sugar cane; all of them introduced to Rapa Nui from the Marquesas Islands long ago.
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