To Eat Guinea Pig or Not To Eat Guinea Pig?

When I travel I like to get brave and try customary food/drinks.  I started out my trip in Peru with something easy…a Pisco Sour.  Pisco is a local spirit made from grapes.  I didn’t try a shot of it, so I’m not sure what’s it’s individual taste is, but a Pisco Sour includes Pisco, Bitters, Lemon or Lime Juice, Sweetener (like Triple Sec) and wait for it…beaten egg whites to make it frothy.  I wasn’t quite sure about the egg whites, but I was assured by other travelers that they had drank quite a few so I shouldn’t be concerned.  The taste was good (sweet/sour), but it was strong for me.  Mostly I didn’t like the frothy part…I wonder if I hadn’t been told prior that it was the egg whites whether I would have felt differently.

Alpaca for DinnerThen I got a bit braver and tried an Alpaca steak for dinner.  Luckily a fellow traveler wanted to try it too, so we shared.  It doesn’t taste like beef, but it also doesn’t taste like wild game.  It was very different and I haven’t ever tasted anything similar.  I enjoyed it until I got towards the middle.  It’s cooked a bit rare for tenderness, but the middle was almost blue.  I don’t usually enjoy rare meat and I certainly wasn’t going to chance it in a foreign country, so I just ate around the edges.  I can’t say I’d order it again, but it wasn’t bad at all.

Back to the question at hand…

Guinea Pig is another customary dish in Peru.  While we were eating empanadas, we started discussing whether to try it or not.  Our guide laughed and said you can pick your Guinea Pig over there…pointing in the general direction of the kitchen.  I seriously thought he was kidding until we paid our bill and there right next to the clay oven was a cage of Guinea Pigs.  I was close to convincing myself to give it a try, but after seeing the playful little guys just waiting to get eaten I’m reconsidering.  To make matters “worse” in the crafts market they were actually selling stuffed Guinea Pigs…it just doesn’t seem right.

Guinea Pigs

Clay OvenStuffed Guinea Pigs

So what do you think?…

Should I try Guinea Pig?  I’m only here a few more days so I need to decide quickly.

5 thoughts on “To Eat Guinea Pig or Not To Eat Guinea Pig?

  1. Pingback: Sacred Valley Tour | Travel, Photography, and Other Fun Adventures

  2. I would try the guinea pig. HOWEVER. There would have to be no live guinea pigs on site. If I picked mine out I would just die. Probably literally die. The kids had guinea pigs as pets and, well, I’m too American-ized to pick out my own little ball of fur to eat.

    • I hear you Cheri. I was ready to do it until there was a pin of them next to the oven. That stopped me cold in my tracks. We’ll see if I work my courage back up. I got a bit of an upset stomach after lunch today, so I’m leaning towards not doing it right now, but that could change by tomorrow…or, dinner.

  3. Well, there is no way I would try it but then I probably wouldn’t have eaten Alpaca either. But I’m betting that you are going to give it a try! Think of it this way…it may be your only chance!

    • Thanks for the encouragement Sandy. I’m still a bit unsure. With a touch of an upset stomach today, it’s not looking good but you never know.

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