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A South American Food Journal Part 5, Belen Market in Iquitos, Peru

Iquitos, in case you haven't heard of it, is the largest city in the Peruvian Amazon. As such, it absorbs anything into its bloodstream which that vast region can produce and be exchanged for hard currency.

Visceral metaphors like those utilized above come to mind when thinking of Belen Market. That's because so much that's conspicuous about the place is the range of animal products to be had there, both bizarre and quotidian. They are displayed proudly along the market's many arterials with complete disregard for Western squeamishness. Hoof-on shanks of wildebeast are piled like firewood next to still-twitching black fish with bright yellow egg sacs hung protruding from small slits in their bellies, a mercilessly effective...


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