The majestic Peruvian Andes stretch the length of Peru and have witnessed the rise and fall of many civilizations. By 3000 BC, highlanders were cultivating a wide range of crops in this difficult landscape—hardy, life-sustaining foods such as gourds, corn, potatoes and quinoa. Potatoes provide the foundation of the Andean diet, and varieties number in the thousands. A stroll through the Cusco market provides a glimpse of the tantalizing potato options: at some stalls, the selections extend almost as far as the eye can see.

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