Take, for instance, the potato. Peru is home to over 3,000 varieties, of which Martínez has tasted around 400. On this warm afternoon in New York, Martínez has giant containers of fresh tubers in orange, red, and yellow. Absent are the tocosh variety, a potato that readily ferments into something that, to the uninitiated, smells so funky you wouldn't feed it to your pet. But Martínez speaks of it the way Spanish chefs revere fine Iberico ham: "It takes years and years to develop, since it depends on the harvest and the way [farmers] were preserving potatoes. So I think it has a lot of meaning, a lot of symbolism, because you're keeping your identity and your ingredients using a potato."