DUBAI: LIMA Dubai, a casual dining outpost of Peruvian cuisine in Dubai, is offering up a four-course iftar menu throughout the Holy Month featuring gems from the Latin American country.
To begin, we were offered a hearty Peruvian Aguadito Soup, with a chicken breast and potatoes steeped in a creamy blend of coriander and corn. Although the potatoes were rather underdone, the soup was flavorful, yet gentle — the perfect opener.
Next up was a pair of refreshing appetizers — a Salmon Tiradito and a Solterito Salad. The ceviche-style salmon with tiger’s milk was a tad bland, with the usually tangy Peruvian dressing failing to hit the right note. The salad, however, was a different story. Crunchy, deep-fried strips of beetroot were sprinkled over a springy, fresh mix of rocket leaves and olives, all dressed in a tantalizingly tangy Japanese mayonnaise dressing. Tiny pops of sweetcorn and soft chips of halloumi cheese offered up a mixture of textures in one of my favorite dishes of the night.
And on that note, the mains were served up and I discovered another gem — the Lamb Seco.
Unbelievably tender, the lamb slices were served atop a thick coriander-based sauce, with a pumpkin puree on the side, and were topped with crunchy swirls of slivered, fried pumpkin.
The Baby Chicken was served grilled after being marinated in a glaze of panka chili, which was also offered on the side as a pouring sauce. The fragrant chicken, which was slightly salty for my taste, was dished up on a bed of herbs in a clay case alongside a slightly-too-gloopy cassava puree with hunks of chorizo buried within.
Our colorful table was completed with a side dish of Tacu Tacu Lentils, a puree of pulses, rice and chilies topped with sharp, pickled red onions.
Textures played a big role in the carefully thought out menu and the dessert carried on with that theme.
A rich dark chocolate mousse with white chocolate ice cream and gritty, delicious chocolate soil was one of the stars of the meal. For a quirky edge, discs of dark chocolate jelly adorned the plate to provide yet another textural element. The decision to pare down the competing flavors offered us the chance to feel the food and appreciate the crunch of the dark crumbs against a creamy, cold lick of ice cream.
LIMA Dubai is offering set iftar menus at $54 per person during Ramadan.