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Anticuchos: Peruvian Grilled Beef Heart Skewers

Anticuchos are a beloved Peruvian dish, often enjoyed as street food or during festivals. They consist of marinated beef heart skewers, grilled to perfection and served with a variety of accompaniments. Here’s a recipe to make this flavorful and traditional dish at home.

Anticuchos: Peruvian Grilled Beef Heart Skewers


For the Marinade:

2 lbs beef heart, trimmed and cut into 1-inch cubes
1/2 cup red wine vinegar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon ground paprika
1 tablespoon aji panca paste (or substitute with a mild chili paste)
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper

For Grilling:

Bamboo or metal skewers (if using bamboo, soak in water for 30 minutes to prevent burning)
Vegetable oil, for brushing

For Serving:

Boiled potatoes or corn on the cob (traditional sides)
Aji sauce or rocoto sauce (for dipping)
Fresh lime wedges


Prepare the Beef Heart:

Trim any excess fat and connective tissue from the beef heart. Cut into 1-inch cubes.

Make the Marinade:

In a large bowl, combine red wine vinegar, vegetable oil, minced garlic, ground cumin, ground paprika, aji panca paste, dried oregano, salt, and black pepper. Mix well.
Add the beef heart cubes to the marinade, ensuring they are well coated. Cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours, or preferably overnight, to allow the flavors to penetrate the meat.

Skewer the Meat:

Thread the marinated beef heart cubes onto the skewers, leaving a little space between each piece to ensure even cooking.

Preheat the Grill:

Preheat your grill to medium-high heat. If using a charcoal grill, ensure the coals are hot and have a white ash coating.

Grill the Anticuchos:

Brush the grill grates with vegetable oil to prevent sticking. Place the skewers on the grill.
Grill the anticuchos for about 3-4 minutes per side, or until they are nicely charred and cooked to your desired doneness. Baste occasionally with any leftover marinade for extra flavor.


Remove the skewers from the grill and let them rest for a few minutes.
Serve the anticuchos with boiled potatoes or corn on the cob. Provide aji sauce or rocoto sauce on the side for dipping.
Garnish with fresh lime wedges for squeezing over the skewers before eating.



Substitute: If beef heart is not available, you can use other cuts of beef, such as sirloin or ribeye, though the traditional flavor comes from the unique texture and taste of beef heart.
Spice Level: Adjust the amount of aji paste according to your spice preference.
Vegetarian Option: Use hearty vegetables like mushrooms, bell peppers, and zucchini for a vegetarian version, marinating and grilling them the same way.

Enjoy your homemade Anticuchos, a delightful taste of Peru’s rich culinary heritage!

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