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May 06th, 2014

Anticuchos: Peruvian Beef Skewers


By Chris Rendell-Dunn
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'Peruvian' seems to be the word on the lips of every restaurant critic and journalist looking for the latest up-and-coming food trend. We've spotted the Peruvian snack of anticuchos cropping up on plenty of menus lately, and we think they are certainly worthy of the world's attention: these delicious little marinated beef kebabs are enormously tasty and more than a little addictive.

Of course to Peruvians themselves anticuchos aren't the latest thing at all, having been around since Inca times when it's thought they were made with llama meat. The popularity of the dish has certainly endured the test of time, but now the meat of choice for modern Peruvians is beef heart. If that makes you feel a bit squeamish though, you'll be relieved to know that more or less any cut of beef will do (and indeed, chicken, lamb, prawns or fish would also make a good substitute).

  • Prep: 45 minutes
  • Cook: 2 minutes on each side
  • Total time: 50 minutes
  • Recipe serves: 4


  • 450g Fresh beef, ideally beef heart
  • 1-2 Cup red wine vinegar
  • 4 Cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 Hot chilli pepper, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp Cumin
  • 1 tsp Salt & pepper
  • Bunch of parsley and/or coriander, finely chopped
  • 3 tbsp Olive oil


  1. Cut the beef into cubes of around 4cm width and lay them all out in a large dish.
  2. Blend the vinegar, half the oil, garlic, cumin, herbs and chilli in a food processor, then pour it over the beef. Allow to marinade for around half an hour (be careful not to leave for too long as the vinegar will dry the meat!)
  3. If using wooden or bamboo skewers, soak them in water so they don't burn. Light your grill or barbeque and wait for it to reach a good high temperature.
  4. Remove the meat from the marinade. Add the remaining half of the oil to the marinade and reserve for later. Stake an even amount of meat onto each skewer.
  5. Place the skewers on the hot grill and baste them continually with the marinade mixture for up to 2 minutes on each side (as they drip the grill should produce flames, which is what gives the dish its delicious seared flavour).

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