Jun 9, 2020

Adobo arequipeño (marinated pork stew)

Adobo is a way of cooking that originated in the Iberian Peninsula in which meat is marinated in some kind of stock or sauce and then slowly cooked. Virtually all former Spanish and Portuguese colonies have some kind of Adobo that was adapted to local ingredients and products. The Adobo arequipeño is the traditional version of Arequipa which is located in Southern Peru.


  • 1 Kg of pork in big chunks
  • 3 cups (0.75 l) of dark lager beer
  • 3 cups (0.75 l) of water
  • 1 tablespoon of cornmeal
  • 1 tablespoon of red vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon of aji panca paste
  • 6 garlic cloves
  • 0.5 tablespoon of ground cummin
  • 2 medium size onions
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 teaspoon of dried oregano
  • 6 allspice berries
  • 1 tablespoon of salt
  • 1 fresh rocoto (optional)


This adobo is traditionally prepared with chicha de guiñapo (corn beer made of black germinated corn). This chicha is hard to get outside Arequipa so we are replacing it with a mix of dark lager beer, water, vinegar and cornmeal.

Cut the pork in 4 big chunks and put them in a large bowl. Blend 1 onion and the garlic with a little of water and add to the pork. Add the aji panca, cummin, cornmeal, vinegar, bay leaf, cinnamon, salt and dark beer to the bowl and mix well trying to cover all the pork. Let it marinate overnight.
Put the pork with all the sauce in a pot. Add the water, allspice berries and oregano. Cook on medium heat for an hour and a half. Add the other onion cut in thick wedges and cook for 15 to 20 until translucent. If you happen to get the fresh rocoto, add it together with the onion and let it cook for 10 minutes and then take it out before it breaks apart.

Serve with bread to dip in the adobo.