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Seco de Carne

This is a delicious Peruvian recipe whose roots are very old, a product of the Arab influence that the Spanish brought with them during colonial times. Seco was originally prepared in the northern part of the country, but it is now eaten all along the coast. You can substitute any meat for the beef, and feel free to be liberal with the wine and aji amarillo.


1 1/2 lb beef steak, cut in pieces

1 red onion, chopped

1 large carrot, sliced thinly in circles

1 cup red wine, or chicha fuerte de jora

3 small potatoes, cut in chunks

1 teaspoon cumin

1 teaspoon pepper

1 teaspoon ground garlic, or minced

1 teaspoon turmeric

3 teaspoons aji amarillo

3/4 cup frozen peas

1 bunch cilantro, blended with water

olive oil

In a ziplock bag or bowl marinate the beef in 1/2 cup wine, 1 teaspoon of each salt and pepper for at least one hour. Remove meat with tongs and brown in a hot pan with a 2 Tablespoons of olive oil. Remove meat, and add 1 more Tablespoon of olive oil along with the onions. Sauté for about 5 minutes, then add the red wine marinade, cumin, pepper, garlic, turmeric, cilantro mixture and aji amarillo. Stir well, add 1/2 cup more wine, then enough water to cover the meat. Simmer covered for 30-60 minutes until meat is tender (depends on which cut of beef you use.) Add potatoes and carrots and simmer 5 minutes. Stir in peas and simmer one more minute. Serve with rice.


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