The Elusive Chocolate Chip Cookie in Peru

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Chocolate chip cookies are truly a novelty here in Peru. That’s because the vast majority of Peruvians do not even own an oven, so of course they do not bake. Even if they could bake, they would not be baking chocolate chip cookies. For one thing, chocolate chip cookies are distinctly American (I dare say most Peruvians have never heard of or tasted a chocolate chip cookie). If Peruvians are going to make a cookie, they make their delicious alfajores, which is a shortbread cookie filled with dulce de leche.

Sadly (for expats anyway), true chocolate chips are not made here in Peru, nor are they currently imported. Brown sugar is not made or sold here, either. Peruvians have what they call, “brown sugar”, but it is only a brown colored sugar. You can find small jars of molasses here, however, to make your own brown sugar.

The only reason I have a few bags of chocolate chips in my Peruvian cupboard is because I brought them in my suitcase.

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Americans here are funny because we all covet our limited supply of chocolate chips. We even bargain for them once in a while and we make chocolate chip cookies only on special occasions. So it truly is a treat to have a chocolate chip cookie here in Peru.

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