Thursday, 21 August 2014

The unforgettable millenium bean feast

The Paracas peninsula in the region of Ica is one of my favourite places on earth. 

Situated on the coastal plain just a few hours south of Lima,  it´s a haunting place of rare beauty, where the light plays off desert cliffs reaching down to beaches whose only inhabitants are seals and sea birds. 

The peninsula sands are also littered with archaeological sites, witness to the ancient peoples who depended on the area´s rich marine resources.

Tello began explorations there in 1925 and was eventually to unearth hundreds of tombs containing 
funeral bundles fardos yielding up a wealth of artefacts and the exquisite, finely woven textiles for which the area is now famous. 

Ica is also the birth place of  Peru´s beloved national beverage, the infamous Pisco; a drink that my friends have christened the happy drink and which indeed has brought me many a happy moment. 

Hernan's story from Ica  tells of a time when the team were treated to a very memorable meal. 

The unforgettable millennium bean feast
In which a lazy cook unexpectedly tickles our boys’ taste buds – and in doing so proves an interesting theory

During one of our excavations in Ica, the work schedule and the budget was so tight that there was no allowance for a cook, all the cooking was left up to us, the expedition members. We took it in turns to prepare the food, but our meals were truly horrible. Conscious that his team was wasting precious time in the kitchen and eager to improve our awful diet, Tello halted work one day and asked around amongst the peons we had hired if there was anyone who knew how to cook.