Even if you aren’t someone who has fallen into the “foodie” trend, there is something to be said for trying new and exotic cuisines when you travel. Certain countries are known for their iconic, signature dishes. Don’t miss out on a chance to try them if you ever travel to these location:
Seafood Paella – Spain
Authentic Spanish seafood paella originated in Valencia. It is cooked on a base of rice, and usually has beans to accompany the variety of seafood – you often have fish, shellfish, and shrimp. While there are other variations of paella, seafood remains the most popular.
Elote (Street Corn) – Mexico
Mexican street corn is grilled corn on the cob which is then covered with fresh cilantro, chili powder, cotija cheese, and Mexican crema. This delicious dish is a great snack, and gets its name “street corn” because it is commonly sold out of carts on the streets of Mexico.
Fish ‘n Chips – United Kingdom
Traditional fish ‘n chips is made by battering some sort of white-meat fish like cod or haddock and serving this with a side of fried potatoes (the “chips”). This dish originated in England, but quickly spread throughout the UK and has become popularized throughout Europe and the US.
Piri Piri Chicken – Mozambique
Piri-piri chicken originated in Portugal and arrived in Mozambique during the colonial period. The dish became popular in Africa, and consists of chicken rubbed with spices such as piri piri (hot pepper) sauces, lemon juice, salt, pepper, cilantro, etc. The chicken is marinated and is then grilled until the outside blackens.
Tres Leches – Latin America
This delicate Latin dessert has become widely popular throughout the world. It is an egg-based cake which gets soaked in three milks – evaporated milk, condensed milk, and heavy cream (hence “Tres Leches”), overnight. Many other cultures have adopted this method of soaking a cake, but tres leches is particularly popular.
Ohmi-gyu Beef Steak – Japan
Ohmi-gyu Beef Steak is famed for being one of the best steaks in the world. This premiere stock of beef from the Takara Ranch in Japan is traditionally cooked sashimi style, with light garnishings of kaffir lime and green tea sea salt.
Pho – Vietnam
Pho is a traditional Vietnamese dish consisting of rice noodles (bánh phở), herbs, and a protein (usually beef or chicken). All of these ingredients rest inside a savory broth and is typically eaten with chopsticks. This dish has traveled far – now a popular food in the US and Europe.
Poke – Hawaii
Native to Hawaii, poke is diced (typically raw) fish, and can be customized by adding a base of rice along with seasonings, veggies, and sauces. This Pacific food is now trending in the US, and is a fun alternative to dishes like sushi.
Arepas – Colombia
An arepa is typically made from maize dough or cooked flour, and made into a bread-type dish. It can be eaten as a side, with veggies or cheese, or broken and used to make a sandwich. Arepas can be dressed up, or dressed down – in Latin American countries such as Colombia or Venezuela, arepas are part of a daily diet.
Chocolate – Switzerland
Switzerland is known for crafting luxury chocolates that are exported throughout the world – you’ve most likely heard of Toblerone, or Lindt chocolates. To be considered “Swiss chocolate” the actual chocolate production has to take place in Switzerland, even if the cocoa and other ingredients are imported from other countries.