Sandwich Shops – Sangucherías
Posted September 20, 2010on:
A popular type of eating establishment in Peru is called a Sanguchería. A Sanguchería is a sandwich shop where they serve a Peruvian-style sandwich different from anything you will find in Canada. In addition to sandwiches, they also serve a variety of jugos (juices made from fresh fruit)
The sandwiches are generally served on fresh french bread which is crispy on the outside and soft on the inside. The most typical sandwich flavor options are pollo (chicken), pavo (turkey), chicharrón (fried pork), lechón (suckling pig), jamón (ham) and salchicha (sausage). What makes the meat different is the way it is cooked. The pollo, pavo and lechon are often cooked ‘a la leña‘ which means over a fire, giving it a unique flavor. Along with the meat, you can add cheese, bacon, egg or camote (sweet potato). But what really makes the sandwiches special are the salsas (sauces). You can choose from salsa criolla (finely sliced onions & ajï mixed with vegetable oil, lime juice, salt, pepper and cilantro), tartara (tartar sauce), ají (spicy), golf (a cross between ketchup and 1000 Islands dressing) and the regular mayonnaise, mustard and ketchup.
I have two favorite sangucherías in Lima… La Lucha (which translates as The Fight or The Struggle) and El Enano (The Dwarf).
La Lucha has two location across from Parque Kennedy. They recently opened the new, larger location half a block from the original location.
The original location is small with very limited seating. The majority of the people take their sandwich para llever (for take out). It is located in La Plaza Esteban Canal, where people gather to play chess on the stone tables constructed there in 1985.
The new La Lucha located at Av. Diagonal 308. It is very well situation, between Starbuck’s and The Flying Dog hostel. It has counter seating like the original location, but also has tables inside where customers can sit and enjoy their meal. The menu at the new location is expanded and offers more choices than its smaller partner.
The sanguche de pavo at La Lucha is one of my favorites. The turkey, which is cooked a la leña, has an exquisite flavor. My other top choice is the chiccharrón con camote. The camote adds a sweet taste that complements the salty fried pork. I like my sandwich with salsa criolla, tartara, ají and mayonnaise. It is a bit messy to eat, but well worth the trouble. And of course, the meal wouldn’t be complete without a fresh jugo de fresa (strawberry juice).
El Enano is located at Jr. Chiclayo 699 at Arica. It is a bit out-of-the-way but worth the trip. Its location on the corner with counter seating is inviting and you can watch the cooks as they prepare your sandwich.
The menu at El Enano is more extensive than La Lucha. In addition to a wide variety of sandwiches, they also serve hamburgers, tacos and enchiladas. The same salsa options that are available at La Lucha are also available at El Enano and you can also add hilos de papas (shoestring potatoe) to your sandwich which give it a nice crunchy texture. My favorite sandwich so far is called ‘El Enano‘. It comes with sausage, bacon, chorizo and cheese. However, there are so many options yet to try at El Enano I can’t say that it will remain my top choice forever!
What is really outstanding about El Enano is the selection of jugos. You can get almost any combination of fruits imaginable, many of which are uncommon or unheard of in Canada such as guanabana, granadilla, maracuya, tuna and lúcma.
If you ever have a chance to visit Lima, be sure to have a meal (lunch, dinner or midnight snack!) in one of the many local sangucherías. You will experience a unique twist on a food we are all very familiar with… the sandwich!