Anticuchos are a popular party food in South America, especially in Peru. The most traditional Peruvian anticuchos are made with beef heart, but they can also be made with chicken (anticuchos de pollo) or steak.
Anticuchos are seasoned with garlic, vinegar, cumin, and aji panca, a mild red chile pepper with a smoky flavor common in Peruvian cooking. You can often find dried aji panca or jarred aji panca paste in specialty stores or Latin food markets.
Anticuchos are best if they are marinated overnight.
Prep Time: 12 hours
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 12 hours, 20 minutes
- 12 cloves of garlic
- 1 tablespoon cumin
- 1/4 cup mild chile pepper paste (aji panca, if available)
- 1/2 cup vinegar, divided
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 2 teaspoons freshly ground pepper
- 2-3 pounds steak (sirloin, tenderloin)
- Wooden skewers
- Cut beef into 2 inch chunks and place in a nonreactive bowl or dish.
- Mash the garlic with a rock, or with a mortar and pestle. Add a little water if necessary to make a paste.
- Make the marinade: in a bowl, mix the crushed garlic, 1/4 cup of the vinegar, 1/4 cup chile pepper paste, 1 tablespoon cumin, 1 tablespoon salt, and 2 teaspoons freshly ground pepper.
- Pour the marinade over the beef and mix well. Marinade beef overnight in the refrigerator. If you are pressed for time, marinade beef for at least 1 hour at room temperature.
- Prepare the grill. Place the beef onto the skewers (about 4 pieces of beef on each skewer).
- Make a basting mixture of 1/2 cup vegetable oil, 1/4 cup vinegar, and a pinch of cumin.
- Grill the skewers for about 5 minutes on each side, or to desired doneness. Baste beef several times during cooking.
- Serve with rice and corn on the cob.
Makes about 12 skewers.