Exploring Peru’s Culinary Heritage through a VISIONS favorite: Lomo Saltado

 Have you ever wondered about the traditional foods in South America? Here’s a local favorite – and how to make it in your own kitchen.

¡Hola, amigos! Welcome, fellow adventurers, to VISIONS Service Adventures! Our mission is to provide transformative experiences that celebrate the culture, history, and traditions of the incredible destinations we visit. Today, we invite you to embark on a culinary journey through the heart of Peru, where we’ll introduce you to the mouthwatering wonders of Lomo Saltado, a dish that embodies the fusion of cultures and flavors unique to this captivating country, and the favorite of our local cook, Neyda Rivera.

Culture Shock

The History of Lomo Saltado

Lomo Saltado’s roots can be traced back to the late 19th and early 20th centuries when Chinese immigrants arrived in Peru. These immigrants brought with them their unique culinary techniques, including stir-frying. As they settled into their new home, they combined their cooking methods with the bountiful ingredients found in Peru.

The result? A harmonious blend of Chinese stir-fry techniques and Peruvian ingredients, such as succulent beef, aji amarillo (Peruvian yellow chili pepper), and potatoes, which come together to form the beloved Lomo Saltado.

Neyda Rivera: Our Culinary Maestro

Before we dive into the savory details of Lomo Saltado, let us introduce you to Neyda Rivera, a key member of our VISIONS Service Adventures team. Neyda, a proud Peruvian with a passion for her country’s cuisine, has been helping immerse VISIONS teen volunteers in Peru culture through food and community for fifteen years.

Lasting Impact on Generations of Young Adults

With a deep knowledge of Peruvian culinary traditions, Neyda is more than just a cook; she’s a storyteller who uses food to connect participants to Peru. Her enthusiasm and culinary expertise add an extra layer of authenticity to our programs, making them unforgettable experiences for all involved.

So, grab your apron and let’s make some Lomo Saltado!

VISIONS teenage volunteers and students


For the Marinade:
1 lb (450g) beef sirloin, thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon soy sauce
Salt and pepper to taste

For the Stir-Fry:
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 red onion, thinly sliced
1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
1 yellow bell pepper, thinly sliced
2 tomatoes, cut into wedges
2 tablespoons aji amarillo paste (adjust to taste)
3 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1/2 cup beef broth
2 cups cooked French fries
Fresh cilantro leaves for garnish


1. In a bowl, combine the beef slices with minced garlic, ground cumin, soy sauce, salt, and pepper. Allow the beef to marinate for at least 30 minutes, or refrigerate it for an even more flavorful result.

2. Heat the vegetable oil in a large skillet or wok over high heat. Once the oil is hot, add the marinated beef and stir-fry until it’s browned on all sides. Remove the beef from the skillet and set it aside.

3. In the same skillet, add a bit more oil if needed, then toss in the sliced red onion and bell peppers. Stir-fry them until they begin to soften, which should take a couple of minutes.

4. Introduce the tomato wedges and aji amarillo paste to the skillet. Continue stir-frying for a few more minutes until the tomatoes become slightly tender.

5. Reintroduce the seared beef to the skillet and pour in the soy sauce, red wine vinegar, and beef broth. Stir everything together and cook for a few more minutes to allow the flavors to meld.

6. Just before serving, add the cooked French fries to the skillet and toss them with the beef and vegetable mixture. The fries will absorb the delectable flavors and add a delightful texture to the dish.

7. Serve your homemade Lomo Saltado piping hot, garnished with fresh cilantro leaves to add a burst of freshness and color with rice, noodles, or as-is.

Congratulations! You’ve now prepared your very own authentic Peruvian dish, and Neyda’s favorite.

Cross-cultural understanding

If you’re seeking a transformative experience that combines cultural immersion, community engagement, and the joys of discovering new flavors, VISIONS Service Adventures is your perfect partner on this extraordinary adventure.

    • Learn from the Community: Our programs offer you the opportunity to learn from passionate locals like Neyda Rivera, who are eager to share their culture, language, and traditions.
    • Make a Difference: Our volunteer projects in Peru allow you to actively contribute to the communities you visit, whether by supporting local schools, aiding in sustainable agriculture, or engaging in other meaningful initiatives.
    • Explore Peru’s Beauty: Our programs take you to breathtaking locations, from the picturesque landscapes of Machu Picchu in the Sacred Valley to the historical wonders of Cusco, ensuring a diverse and enriching experience.
    • Build Lifelong Connections: VISIONS programs create tight-knit communities where participants form deep friendships with fellow travelers and forge lasting bonds with locals.

Visit our website to learn more and start planning your next Spanish immersion adventure with us!

VISIONS in The New York Times