This page named ‘South American food recipes’ is but a brief introduction to the cuisine of the continent. Further down on the page there are links to the specific countries and there you would find more detailed information as well as family recipes submitted by my visitors.
The vast differences in latitude and altitude together with closeness to sea or access to fresh water are obvious factors when discussing regional premises. The enormous multitude of fruits, vegetables and animals in the Amazon is very different from what you find naturally on high altitudes in the Andes or on the great plains in Argentina. Obviously these regional differences has had great influence in how the local cuisines has developed.
Before the continent had contact with the Old World the greater parts of South America is believed to have been dominated by simple farming and fishing – much living off what the land had to offer. That created a sea mammal and seafood intense diet in the extreme South while you had plenty of fruits, vegetables and fresh water fish in the Amazon. Among the Andean civilizations more advanced farming had developed and also a more advanced cuisine. If you analyze South American food recipes of today all these factors has had great influence and are clearly visible in different areas.
Colonization And Forward
When the continent was discovered by the Old World great changes came to be. A great exchange of traditions and ingredients started. Examples of new crops and livestock are: Onions, garlic, citric fruits, cows, chicken and rice – in the other direction went crops like potatoes, tomatoes, chilies and tropical fruits. All these new ingredients mixed with the traditions of the cultures that met gave rise to whole new cuisines. Spanish tried to find ways to substitute ingredients in their traditional dishes, Indians learned to enjoy chicken, garlic and onions. The great influx of African slaves also had a big influence. Like everywhere else in the world, industrialization and commercialization has had a great impact during the last few hundred years. One of the more popular national foods of Brazil is Norwegian dried cod cooked in a Portuguese manner.
A more specific discussion about different ingredients and cuisines is more fruitful on a national level. Just follow the links below to the different countries to learn more about it – here you will also find submitted family recipes from each country listed!