Hive, hive, hive it up - We hive it up.. The first post through the Hive Chain, I'm excity like very.. <3
While in Peru, going to a Peruvian market seems to be something I love doing and literally, it's enjoyable to do so. Many fruits I have never seen, a lot of food I get excited about. Great stuff at local prices.. Same here in Arequipa, we went to the most visited local market,Camilo Market or Mercado Camilo. Local, colorful and lively.
Walking from Arequipa city center to Mercado Camilo
Arequipa is not small... Working from one spot to another may change the scenery a bit. Well, the all-white city mostly but still, a different part of the city gives it a different vibe. Walking from the hostel we're staying at just a block from Plaza de Armas to Mercado Camilo (Camilo Market), we could literally feel it's getting more and more hectic, noisier and yeah, different in general.
We started to see so many more street vendors, selling both food and other random stuff. A lot of stores even before we get to the market itself.
Exotic Peruvian fruits and freshly squeezed Juices at Mercado Camilo
One thing they say we need to try here at the market is all the juice. Juice has its own zone with many stores. Very competitive, I would say. Once we walk close or give them eye contact, they start to wave the juice menu around 'Jugo Jugo.. (juice)' All the stores look the same to me. The types of fruits, the prices, how they dress...
We just always went with the one with the greatest honest and welcoming smile. Wait, not just that, gloves too!
Prices mostly are all the same. This one we picked a few fruits combined with no water or sugar added so it costs a bit more. That was about S/ 8 if I remember it right. Once you finish your cup, wait a minute, it's not exactly just that. You got another one refilled, normally. It's being said, juices are a must once visiting Mercado Camilo! *Also, it's hot out that's why :)
A few aisles next to the juice zone, there are a lot of beautiful and colorful exotic Peruvian fruits stacked up nicely. We were invited super aggressively to try a few fruits at one of the stalls. We tried so many as they were giving us nonstop so.. I think the price rises a bit higher when they offer us one fruit after another... Quite tricky, isn't it?
Peruvian Delicious Chicharones!!
Mercado Camilo separate all the zone quite nicely, one is the colorful all fruits and veggies, another zone are all the fresh meat cut professionally close to the chicharron shops. How handy!
Looking at that fatty piece of pork and I just couldn't resist. Look at it again! So fat, so good. We order a chicharron dish. We got choices but I was not too sure what were the options so... I say 'Si!' which means yes! #lol Anyway, I don't think it matters much. Whatever were in front of us looked all delicious so we sure get delicious food no matter what.
A few big chunks of deep-fried fatty pork, potatoes, spicy salads with onions and tomatoes. A bit of corns. All combined, not gonna lie, it's quite a heavy of a dish. Super duper good though! I love the crispy and fatty pieces of pork.
Walking around with our stomach so packed with all the heavy fat and protein from the Chicharones, we just couldn't help ourselves stopping for some Peruvian local favourites, tamales. A small stall in Mercado Camilo with a few chairs that are not for you to sit on but to place the giant baskets filled with homemade tamales with different flavors.
Have you heard of tamales? It's delicious a corn flour steamed or baked in corn husks with different filling like, cheese, beef, vegetables. Really quick and easy snack that's quite filling.
I usually eat it just by itself. I have tried a few versions of tamales, in Mexico, the US (by Mexicans) and also in Guatemala. Usually they don't serve it with anything. Here in Peru, well, Mercado Camilo here at this shop especially, they serve it with onion and tomatoes salad. Honestly, I think it's such a nice contrast to it. Make the dish a bit more refreshing and give it a little crunch. The sourness from the lime also really compliments the tamales. Love it!
Alfajores, Arequipa dessert
Oh my! I love alfajores!
I had never tried alfajores before but I realize it's everywhere here in Arequipa. Small ones, big ones and they are colorful! Corn-starch cookies that melt in your mouth with a caramel filling mmm like, seriously, people!
I'm so glad we didn't fall for the ones at Plaza de Armas. Those look yum but it's more like a brand/chain type kind of. Though, we found some good stuff here at Mercado Camilo. A local owned and homemade! Small shop in the market specializes on just Alfajores. You bet ya! they're dang smooth and yum!
Here come the secret! Yappa?
Yappa? Yeah, or some sort of that I'm not even sure. We were enjoying a cup of oj in front of Mercado Camilo, a fresh-squeezed juice by a Peruvian lady, then a local who was another customer approached us and told us some great secret!
'Yappa por favor'
Yes, it's a word to say 'Refill please...' and we're like 'What?'. It's just a normal thing to say when you drink with a street stall like this. Local do it so, don't be shy! Say it, say it! 'Yappa Yappa por favor :)'
Alrighty, Mercado Camilo is fun, colorful, and humble. Though, once in Arequipa, don't focus on just street food and affordable Peruvian food at huariques, go check out picanterias! A traditional Peruvian restaurants found in Arequipa and Cusco. A few we have been to and they became our favs: Nueva Palomino Picanteria and Picanteria Victoria. Such a dining experience. Please don't miss it!
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All copy and photos are original content by me.