When it comes to food we all talk about the popular food and the countries that food belongs. The Italian or Franch or Spanish food from Western countries and Thai, Vietnamese or Indian food from Asian countries. We all have a list of must eat from these cuisines or in these countries. Recently I was having a discussion with fellow bloggers about food from the different country. While discussing I realized that while traveling people look for restaurants for popular cuisine instead of that country’s cuisine. This happens because we don’t know much about the cuisine from those countries. I have compiled a list of 5 most underrated cuisines of the Western Countries with the help of bloggers from those countries.
By Sandra Henriques Gajjar at Tripper
Everyone raves about eating fish in Portugal – and in a country where the majority of the territory is coast and islands, they should – but the local cuisine is as diverse as the Portuguese culture.
Influences range from the Ancient Romans and the North-African Moors to the newfound spices from India during the so-called Age of Discoveries. No wonder that Portugal is one of the seven countries included in the UNESCO list of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity for the Mediterranean.
In a land with (allegedly) over one thousand recipes for bacalhau (salted cod fish), how do you narrow down the list to the five must eat dishes? You aim for the best of the best of each region.
Grilled limpets and fried black swordfish
Starting off with the islands, Azores and Madeira are the undisputable top destinations in Portugal for fresh fish. To pinpoint just one dish from each one of the archipelagos – tough choice – I’d suggest the grilled limpets in the Azores and fried black swordfish in Madeira.
In the North, especially in Porto, the francesinha sandwich is mandatory and some restaurants even serve a vegetarian option because, as they say, the secret is in the sauce, not the meats in it.
In the South, the Alentejo region rules with great wines, pungent cheeses, and the finest of olive oils. There’s one particular dish that I wouldn’t mind eating at every meal for the rest of my life called migas, which is basically a bread-based mash seasoned with a lot of garlic and sometimes coriander (in Alentejo, there is no such thing as too much garlic and coriander).
Bacalhau à Brás
In the center region, the capital city Lisbon is your one-stop-spot to try all the countries must-eat dishes and bacalhau à Brás, shredded salted codfish mixed with chips and eggs, fried, garnished with black olives and parsley.
Ovos moles from Aveiro
Leave room for dessert (and a story)! You can’t leave Portugal without a taste of the traditional conventual sweets. The base to all of them is as simple as egg yolks and sugar in abundance (occasionally almonds if you go all the way down South to Algarve) and they all started as a hobby for nuns and monks in the 15th Century (hence the name conventual). Later, after the dissolution of all religious orders in the 18th century and consequent loss of financial support from high-class families, selling conventual sweets became a source of income for convents and monasteries.
Everyone is familiar with pasteis de Belém but the ovos moles in Aveiro are a better example of their entrepreneurial endeavors: leftovers of non-consecrated communion wafer filled with a thick cream made from egg yolks and sugar.
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By Janine Good at Fillmypassport
Australia is an incredible country to visit for so many reasons. And as you marvel as such unique landmarks as the Sydney Opera House, and Uluru, while cuddling a cute koala, you just may wish to indulge in something cultural and exclusive to the nation. Here are our five top Australia foods (especially for the sweet tooth) to try while Down Under.
This cute little treat is simply butter bread with colored sprinkles. This sweet variation to bread and butter is a popular dish served at children’s parties and on Australia Day.
These delightful desserts are the epitome of sweetness. Raspberry jam, chocolate ganache and brown and white icing fill a delightfully flaky pastry shell baked to a golden brown. Enjoy these delights with a pot of tea or your favorite espresso beverage.
These coconut covered chocolate squares are the perfect light treat for an afternoon snack, dessert course, and even wedding sweet tables.
A traditional baked meringue dish served with mixed fruit and cream is the perfect light dessert for a special occasion. Australians frequently enjoy this dessert for such celebrations as Christmas, Australia Day, and New Year’s.
No trip to Australia would be complete without sampling this popular spread. A concoction made mainly of beer yeast, Australians enjoy it on their breakfast toast, sandwiches, and within various recipes. Although it doesn’t sound too appetizing, it is said to have nutritional value and many vitamins required for daily health.
So there you have our foodie bucket list whenever visiting Australia. Being married to an Aussie, it is indeed a treat to have all of the above on a regular basis while over on that side of the planet. (Well, except Vegemite for me! Still trying to get used to it haha!)
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By Bryony Clapperton at Travels and MoreNow, I understand the UK and England, in particular, doesn’t have the best reputation for food but we have some gems and our mix of fusion cuisines inspired by our countries once powerful empire mean there are some traditional English gems that you may not have considered.
Fish and Chips
Traditional fish and chips usually consist of white fish Cod or Haddock battered and deep friend, whichever you prefer expect it to be served with chunky cut chips and a side of your choice. Whether you prefer mushy peas, garden peas or beans no trip to the coastal towns of England is complete without a deep-fried battered fish and chips with plenty of salt and vinegar of course. Some opt for tomato ketchup others prefer a tartar/tartare sauce. Don’t be shocked if your meal is severed to you and wrapped up in the paper, its a chip shop classic.
A Sunday Roast Dinner
Some eat theirs at lunchtime some wait until 6.00 pm in the evening but on a Sunday you’ll find one thing on the menu of England’s traditional pubs. That’s a roast dinner often referred to as a Sunday Dinner. Think of a traditional meat and plenty of veg including mashed potatoes, oven roasted potatoes, carrots, and broccoli. All of this is then topped off with delicious meaty or onion gravy with Yorkshire puddings which isn’t actually a pudding at all. This also constitutes a traditional English Christmas Dinner with all the trimmings.
Pies and Pasties
Is any trip to England complete without grabbing yourself a pie or pasty? Picture shortcrust or puff pastry filled with delicious meat filling or veggie filling. My favorite as a vegetarian is a cheese and onion pasty. Pies and pasties are always found on a traditional English pub menu and can be purchased in supermarkets, sandwich shops, and bakeries throughout the countries. For meat lovers try a steak and ale pie or a famous Cornish pasty for veggies stick to the cheese and onion or vegetable bakes. If you’re feeling really adventurous you can also find Balti pies and Tandoori Chicken pasties in The Midlands.
Cheese, chips, and gravy
Now, this is a regional favorite, the north of England loves their cheesy chips covered in gravy. Its a similar concept to the Canadian Poutine but the Brits did it first. A meal often associated with heavy drinking and fast food restaurants at 2.00 am. Cheese, chips, and gravy is the ultimate comfort food to rival no other, most of the time it doesn’t look appertaining but believe me you’ll never look back once you’ve tried it. A classic from the North of England that’s slowly winning the hearts of The South.
Full English Breakfast
Love it or hate it The Full English Breakfast was always going to make this list. Now, its as notorious dish commonly associated with Brits abroad especially in mainland Spain and the Spanish Isle. Brits love their Full English Breakfast and regardless of your feelings about the behavior of Brits on holiday it is an English staple and must be tried during any trip to England. The Full English Breakfast comes in many shapes and sizes often with a veggie or vegan option included in some of England’s better breakfast restaurants. Heinz baked beans with bacon, sausage, egg, tomato and more. No list of English cuisine would be missing a Full English Breakfast.
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By Rosalie Ryan Campau at Rosalie Goes
The neighbor of England has it’s own cuisine though it is not much talked about and underrated cuisines. Here are some of the must-eat dishes from Scotland.
This National Dish of Scotland is made from a mixture of oatmeal and the typically discarded organs of a sheep. The description alone usually scares people off, which is a great shame because there are few things in life as filling and downright tasty. A better description of haggis is that it is a mildly spicy ground meat. Have it alongside neeps and tatties (that’s turnips and potatoes, for the rest of you) for a traditional Scottish feast.
Scotch Eggs consist of a hard-boiled egg that is covered with a layer of meat, which is then covered with a layer of breadcrumbs and baked to cook. It’s a filling, hearty dish that was originally invented for laborers and workmen due to its portable nature. Nowadays, they make great additions to picnic baskets and come in a variety of flavors like chorizo and black pudding.
Similar to fudge, Scottish tablet is a sweet treat made simply by boiling sugar and butter. It starts out nearly hard as a rock but melts in your mouth with buttery goodness. It’s usually served in small quantities alongside coffee and is particularly good after a quick dunk.
Scottish shortbread is king of the cookies. You probably have tried it before as shortbread been exported around the world in boxes and tins, but there really is nothing like dunking a fresh slice of shortbread into a hot cuppa on a rainy day. In Scotland, you can a unique variety of specialty flavors to try, such as lavender, rosemary, and orange zest. Millionaire’s Shortbread, layered with dark chocolate and caramel, is a particularly divine treat.
While you can find imported salmon in nearly every corner of the world, eating a fresh filet reeled in from the Atlantic coast is like nothing you’ve had before. Whether baked on an oak plank or hot smoked and served with cream cheese and a squeeze of lemon juice, you’re guaranteed a treat.
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By Deni at The Full-Time Tourist
Canada has a lot of influence on its cuisine from all over the world but still, it has maintained a unique identity for itself though it is not popular around the world. Here are some of the dishes one should not miss when in Canada.
If there’s any food that Canada is most known for, it’s for our infamous poutine. While many countries have thought to put gravy on fries, one customer asked a small town Quebec restaurant to top off his gravy on fries with cheese curds. The owner responded, “Ça va faire une maudite poutine,” which loosely translates to “That’s going to make a damn mess.” But since then, Quebec has been known for its poutine!
Quebec is also known for its maple industry. In fact, 90 percent of Canada’s maple goodness comes from the province. I recommend trying la tire, or maple taffy, which is boiled maple syrup, dumped onto a fresh patch of snow and rolled up with a stick. Doesn’t get more Canadian than that!
Mac and Cheese
Mac ‘n cheese, although an American invention, has been sweeping its way around Canada. Stop by Toronto in late July for its Mac ‘N Cheese Festival, which attracts thousands of people every year!
While you’re in Toronto, stop by Nish Dish for some Indigenous food! With options from bannock, which is very similar to a tea biscuit, to buffalo sausage, there’s plenty of ways to try some authentic Canadian cuisine by the people who lived on the land for centuries.
Finally, one of my personal favorites is a no-bake dessert known as Nanaimo Bars. Named after a small town in British Columbia, these delicious squares are a great way to satisfy your sweet tooth the Canadian way! The bar has three layers: a chocolatey crushed wafer base, a custard middle and topped with a thick layer of melted chocolate. Deelish!
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Read about Must Eat Asian Cuisines