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Recipes Around the World International Vegetarian Union
Vegan Latin American/Caribbean Recipes
Contributed by Vegetarians and Vegans from around the world
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Causa Limena (Peruvian Potato Salad)
from: Duckalucky, via vegweb.com

  • 2 pounds potatoes, peeled and steamed or boiled till floury
  • 3 teaspoons yellow chili powder (aji), or enough cayenne to make potatoes taste well-seasoned and mildly spicy
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons oil
  • 1 avocado, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cucumber, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup mild red onion, cut into thinnest slices
  • 1 ripe tomato, cut into thin slices
  • 1/4 cup vegan mayonnaise
  • Note: can use tempeh or garbanzo "chicken" salad in place of veggies olives, strips of hot or sweet peppers, mayonnaise, etc. for garnish
  • optional: 1-2 limes

Mash potatoes with chili powder or cayenne pepper, turmeric, salt, and oil.  You may also add the juice of a lime, but don't make the potatoes too wet.  They should be stiff, relatively smooth, and very well seasoned.  Allow to cool to room temperature, if not already cold.

Oil a loaf pan or other deep-walled dish (I use a casserole).  Press half of potato mixture into loaf pan, creating a flat surface.  Arrange vegetables and mayonnaise, or "chicken" salad (I like to keep the avocadoes in this case), atop potatoes in a more-or-less even set of layers, and then top with the remaining potatoes, smoothing the top flat.  The effect should be something like a layer cake.  Chill.  You may decorate the top (or turn out the whole shebang onto a platter when cold and decorate the bottom!) with piped on mayonnaise, ketchup, arranged peppers and olives, or what have you.

I do not like ketchup on this, but Peruvian cooks often use it for contrast; they almost always use copious amounts of mayonnaise to decorate, either piped on in a lattice or spread on (too much!!)

This will be very firm when cold: do chill it, but don't let it sit in the fridge for ages-- it's best on the day it's made.  Serve in slices.  It will be very rich and is an unusual appetizer--very tasty and also festive to the eye, if your guests can stand the idea of cold potatoes!

This dish is made in Peru with a few different fillings: either a salad of chicken, chopped celery, and mayonnaise (with infinite variations), a mayonnaisey tuna salad, or vegetables, as above.  Sometimes peas are included in any variation.  Do include the avocado-- it's really special.

A squeeze of lime juice on the veggies makes it tastier and keeps the avocado from going brown, although with a good layer of taters on top it's anaerobic and doesn't usually brown.