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Never mind that the origins of saltado are more Chinese than Incan, or that ceviche is actually the country’s national dish. For a lot of Americans, saltado is the representative meal of a nation most of us only know for pan flutes and Macchu Picchu. Saltado is the gateway drug. And the saltado that Inka Mama’s sears in its woks here, across from South Coast Plaza, is the kind of dish that should indoctrinate even more Peruvian-food converts. Served on a rectangular plate and next to a rectangular-molded wall of moist rice enriched with chicken broth, it’s a never-ending Andean range of food. And as with all good saltados, the fries are still crisp, the steak tender and the red onion wilted just to that point at which its harshness has been cooked out but it hasn't lost its snap. Most important, this saltado isn’t wet or overly soupy. There are just enough of its cumin-and-soy stir-fry leavings to soak up with the rice, but not too much that it dampens its resolve. Those new to the restaurant should also consider the Piqueo Andino, a gigantic sampler plate of patiently braided empanadas bursting meat juice, a dense tamal, papa a la huancaina, and ruddy piles of boneless fried chicken the Peruvians call chicharon. It’s one of the most expensive offerings, but if you’re a Peruvian-food virgin, this platter is second only to saltado as the best way to pop your cherry.