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Friday, March 21, 2014

The Day in Cieneguilla /Ericka's Birthday!

My lovely friend Ericka's birthday was last week, so she invited me to her place in a district of Lima called Cieneguilla.  Cieneguilla is on the far east outskirts of Lima and it took almost an hour and a half for me to get there from Miraflores.  I was pretty sure I was getting punked, because at one point, I was pretty much just in the middle of the desert with no one else around.  I was shocked when I arrived to her town and it was probably the most gorgeous area of Lima that I have been to.  Lush and tropical, the Lurin River running through the middle and big sprawling yards with restaurants, hostels, adventure parks and hotels.  Ericka's family own a hostel with some small bungalows and fruit trees everywhere beside there family home. 

 I arrived and my friend Nilma, and her baby Josha were already there.  Ericka made us a delicious drink, made with Pisco and the maracuya fruit that grow in her yard.  After a quick visit, we decided to go for a walk around to see the river and the town.

We arrived back and were greeted by Ericka's family.  Her two kids, her mom, an aunt and her hilarious and adorable grandparents.  Her mom had prepared from scratch one of my favorite Peruvian dishes, Aji de Gallina.  It is basically shredded chicken in a mixture of spices and then slowly cooked.  Served with rice and potatoes.  It was the best I have had!  I love the food in Peru!  Nilma also prepared another fantastic espresso chocolate cake. So amazing!

After lunch, I wandered around and took some photos in the yard.  They grow some of my favorite fruits!

This crocodile is real, but dead and Ericka's grandfather brought it back from the jungle when he was in the war.  It scared me so bad when I saw it that I almost peed myself.  He thought it was HILARIOUS!

 We also did a bit of a mini photoshoot .  This is me and Josh.

Isabella, grandma, Nilma and Josh and me.

Late in the afternoon, Ericka, myself and the kids took the long ride (even longer at rush hour) back into Miraflores.  We went to IK Restaurante, owned by Ericka's friend Franco.  Ericka runs a company called Delectable Peru Tours that does private tours and, tastings and parties all over Lima, so she knows all the best places and knows all the chefs.  Actually she was in charge of the tour when I learned to make Ceviche and Pisco sours.  Ik restaurant was amazing!  

After a fantastic meal, we got a tour of the restaurant and kitchen with Chef Franco.  He is such a nice guy and a talented chef.  

I hope Ericka enjoyed her birthday, because I know I sure did!  Hope you had a great one darling, and many more!

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