July 28th commemorates the 189th anniversary of Peru’s independence from Spanish rule, won by the Argentine liberator, General Jose de San Martin, in 1821.
Although Peruvian Independence Day is officially on the 28th, the festivities traditionally begin on the night of the 27th and go on until the 29th. On the 27th, Peruvians often play folk and Creole music in plazas and public parks. At dawn on July 28, a salute of 21 canons heralds the raising of the national flag followed by a presidential speech. On this day throughout the country there are military parades, fireworks, bullfighting, livestock exhibitions and fairs, where traditional crafts and foods are sold. On the 29th, families and friends get together for parties and general merriment. Tourism tends to increase during these holidays with visitors coming from all over to join in the celebrations.
Want to celebrate Peruvian Independence Day from the comfort of your own home? Try a Pisco Sour, the traditional Peruvian cocktail made from pisco (Peruvian grape brandy), egg whites, lime juice and sugar. Or try Chicha, a popular Andean drink made from fermented maize and different aromatic herbs.
Pisco Sour (makes 2 servings)
4 oz. pisco brandy
2 T simple syrup (or sugar)
2 T fresh lime juice
2 tsp. pasteurized egg whites
Lime wedges, for garnish
In a blender, add pisco, sugar, fresh lime juice, egg whites and a handful of ice cubes. Blend until smooth and serve straight up in a chilled martini glass or champagne flute. For an aromatic garnish, top with a dash of angostura bitters and a wedge of lime. If you prefer not to blend it, add all of the ingredients into a cocktail shaker. Shake well, then serve.