Chef Gordon Ramsay follows the footsteps of potatoes in Peru

Peru - Gordon Ramsay (L), holding a cooked Guinea pig, visits with Mario, a local farmer in Peru. (National Geographic/Ernesto Benavides)

Gordon Ramsay, the chef and owner of Hell’s Kitchen, went to Peru to see award-winning chef Virgilio Martinez during his visit to the Sacred Valley in Peru on Gordon Ramsay: Uncharted, a National Geographic program.

Gordon Ramsay and a local family of farmers tasted Lawa de Chuno, a classic dish made with local ingredients in the Sacred Valley in Peru. At 11,000 feet above sea level, Ramsay pauses for relaxation, enjoying local snacks and dried Alpaca meat, with spectacular views of Michelin-starred chef Virgilio Martinez and the Sacred Valley.

For 500 years the ecosystem and biodiversity remained the same in the heart of the Inca Empire, albeit many things changed, and the farmers who lived there followed in the footsteps of the Incas. It is located in Mil Sacred Valley, a restaurant and a culinary research laboratory. Known for his use of local ingredients, Martinez focuses on the cuisine of his ancestors, providing a modern perspective to high-altitude Andean cuisine.

Martinez says that their food is pure and unadulterated: “We don’t have to say organic material because everything is organic here, Mart he says. Martinez also mentions that the indigenous people’s respect for the land and how altitude affects agricultural methods are also well-known and their commitment to promoting and sustaining centuries-old traditions to new generations.

Andeans is one of the first growers in the Andes, which has more than 4,000 varieties of local potatoes. “Mad Potato Scientist” Manuel Choqque works on high-altitude potatoes that were once used by the Incas.

Martinez tells Ramsay that when he showed Ramsay an earth oven and an outdoor kitchen, which dates back to the Inca Empire, he did not cook in a mud oven and such a stove.