Betting on local gastronomy is a win for all!

In order to organize a meal at home, in a restaurant or in any kitchen, we need to make a shopping list and usually go to a supermarket or the market to buy everything we need. As professional chefs, we are used to be on the lookout for ingredients that aren’t that common, that have the best quality we can find to surprise our diner.

Having shared some time with several local farmers, living with them as they lived their lives day by day, observing the ingredients used in dishes from their point of origin, I discovered how complex their work is, and yes, they have my full respect. They had it before, ¡but now they have it twice as much!

As a cook I have been given the task of getting to know the farmers and artisan producers, of knowing their stories, and their work. This has helped me understand gastronomy from another point of view.

If we work together as farmers, artisan producers, cooperatives, and chefs, I am sure we will all win in the kitchen.

Guatemala is a country rich in crops, and we have the privilege of having many ingredients throughout the year, so we must take care of them and encourage the consumption of these national products because these are the products that carry Guatemala’s name, flavor and soul.

The gastronomic tendencies increasingly point to the “Seasonal Creativity”, which means we as chefs cook with seasonal products. This not only helps to develop our culinary style, but also is an economic engine for the producing communities.

I have had the privilege of sharing with great chefs from around the world, who are betting on the local gastronomy, impelling the small producers, developing the gastronomy of each place and exalting the local products.
Flavio Solórzano, Peruvian chef with whom I share air space in the “Utilísima” channel, tells me that in Peru both this movement of using local products and revalorizing its traditional cuisine began 10 years ago. The impact has been so big that now Peru is not only known for its cultural legacy, Machu Picchu, but also for its flavors.

Flavio tells me that the impulse of domestic demand, as an engine for the Peruvian economy has increased significantly in the last five years, generating jobs and tourism. This reminds me that the eyes of the world are on the Latin American gastronomy and we must take advantage of this moment.

The same thing is happening in Mexico, Brazil, Chile and Colombia, who have joined this movement achieving great results, as they have managed to make their gastronomy excel at the global level, but most importantly, that it excels internally in their own country.

Cuisine is a natural extension of what fishermen, farmers and artisan producers offer us. Today I want to invite you to use your culinary creativity with local products, fresh and, above all, rich. I want to thank the producers who let me share their experiences, enriching my culinary knowledge of the ingredients from their origins.
Betting on ourselves, we all win.

 

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