Jana Escudero: what happened to the TV chef and what is his return to gastronomy all about?
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I’m talking to Jana while she’s in Madrid (she must be back in Lima by now and will be reading this from home) and she feels the same as usual. the Chief with the constant smile and the precise words; the same one who became famous serving fettuccini a la huancaína with chunks of juicy loin – one of the great successes of the fair mixed– and a superb Toblerone cheesecake that will live forever in the memory and palate of many. Jana, 47, blonde, petite, doll-faced, agile mind. A cookbook brought her back.
His starting point was the restaurant he kept for years in a tap, owned by his grandfather, located on Colonial Avenue (the name was enough and stuck: El Grifo), where he began to sell simple snacks and ended up orchestrating one of the most representative spaces of what was the culinary boom of the first decade of 2000. Fusion cuisine, cozy, with technical, Peruvian and signature touches. That hasn’t changed.
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At that time, there were few women in the field who were dedicated to professional cooking, beyond confectionery; least even those who ran restaurants. Escudero and Marilú Madueño (Huaca Pucllana) stand out from this generation, but it will take several years for there to be more representative female faces.
For Jana, the last half was a break; a sort of silence that left many wondering what had become of her. “I recorded a show for two years,” she confirms to me from Spain, about her facet as a cook on television. “What happens is they’ve done it over and over again, and people always associate me with that. I would love to come back to TV, but things have changed a lot now,” he said. her on her foray into a cable channel, a window that brought her closer to many audiences.
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The pandemic ended up changing the fates of Jana and El Grifo (the Jockey’s original location and headquarters closed), but it paved the way for fresher new things. “I started sharing recipes on my social networks, with videos that I record myself, with my mobile phone”, admits the chef who has just launched her first recipe book. Histoires de cuisine is a collection classified according to your desires (the dessert part is called “Broken Hearts”, to name just one of the headings) where the best of their repertoire, from yesterday and today, are brought together.
At the same time, Jana cooks a small brand of food, with one or two homemade snacks that will soon be on the market. The best remains to be served.
The book: “Cooking Stories”
“Cooking Stories” It is on sale in the Tottus supermarket chain. It has nearly a hundred recipes classified according to the occasion. all sprinkled with comments, memories and advice from Jana herself. the book includes basic slides and photos from his family album. Price: S/49.90.