The Tree House Restaurant is one of the best restaurants in Aguas Calientes and it’s always one of our first stops when we visit Machu Picchu. We tried out a great cooking class when we were there last, so we were delighted when we discovered that the Tree House restaurant is now also offering their ‘Bite of Cusco’ cooking classes in Cusco itself.
Cooking classes Cusco start with a tour of the San Pedro market where you buy some of the ingredients you will use during the class and learn about local Peruvian products. Then we headed up to their custom built cookery school which is reminiscent of the Tree House restaurant – a welcoming rustic wood and glass structure with an outdoor, cozy dining area where you get to taste your culinary creations.
These cooking classes are an opportunity to learn about Peruvian cuisine in an intimate setting. Classes are always held by the owners themselves so it feels more like an intimate lunch with friends where you get an insider’s look into local culture and gastronomy. Owner Francisco and Executive Chef Juan Carlos shared their love for Peruvian food in what was a really enjoyable, laid-back experience.
The purpose built cooking space is ideal for groups of up to 8 people and classes start with a Pisco sour making lesson – the perfect start to any meal. (It was then fun to bring home a bottle of pisco and make pisco sours for friends in Europe later!) We then learnt how to make a delicious causa (mashed potato seasoned with aji Amarillo or Peruvian yellow pepper) and a ceviche so tasty and fresh I thought I was right next to the ocean!
For mains they steer away from the more traditional dishes that are often taught in cooking classes and opt for alpaca tenderloin wrapped in bacon and fresh rosemary and served with a vegetarian quinotto (risotto made with the Andean super food quinoa). The classes are very well organised and they select dishes that are easy to re-create at home yourself with suggestions for alternative ingredients for produce that might be difficult to find.
Lunch was followed by tasting platters of local fruits including lucuma, star fruit, chirimoya and goldenberry that we had bought earlier at the market and which we enjoyed under the afternoon sun as we lazily chatted about food and the Andean culture – the perfect end to a great culinary experience!
Best of Peru Travel Recommends:
- Different class options are available including Peruvian fusion, Andean cuisine and vegetarian cuisine so specify your preference when you book.