Food is a powerful thing. Whether you love or dread it, most of us eat on a daily basis. Food is a source of enjoyment and comfort while also providing the energy to live our busy lives. But have you ever thought about where that food comes from? Even if you buy all organic produce, there’s still a good chance that a lot of the food you eat has been irradiated or cooked at high temperatures to ensure it doesn’t spoil.
Take A Look at These Meals from Around the World:
- China: Jiaozi. Dumplings.
Jiaozi, literally translated as dumplings, is a fantastic dish to try when traveling to China. Dumplings are a popular dish in many cultures and are known for being easy to make, healthy, and filling. Chinese dumplings are typically boiled, fried, steamed, or served in broth and are most often made from wheat flour, with a filling of meat, vegetables, or seafood. The dumpling is often steamed alone and eaten as a light snack or can be eaten with a variety of sauces.
- Germany: Jägerbraten mit Spätzle.
Germany is the country that brought us bratwurst and strudel, so it makes sense that they have some great foods to offer up. German food—specifical food from Bavaria, the region in central Germany where Munich is located—is known for being hearty, filling, and delicious. Try a traditional German meal like Jägerbraten mit Spätzle (roast beef with spaetzle), or a thick meat and potatoes soup called Kartoffelsalat, which is a great soup for cold weather.
- Switzerland: Cheese Fondue
Cheese fondue is the Swiss version of fondue; only this version uses cheese instead of chocolate! The warm melted cheese is always served with bread or breadsticks, and guests dip the bread into the cheese for dipping. Most Swiss restaurants will have a selection of different cheeses, from mild to salty, so that you can choose your favorite. Fondue makes an appearance here in the land of cheese fondue due to the Swiss penchant for eating cheese. Swiss cheese fondue is a party favorite.
- India: Masala Dosa.
Indians are truly masters of cooking up delectable meals that are as tasty as they are healthy. The Masala Dosa is one of the most loved dishes of the north Indian states. The name comes from “Masala,” a mixture of meat, spices, and gravy that is spread over a crepe or pancake called “Dosa,” stuffed with vegetables, potatoes, or lentils. This great dish is served with chutney, made from mango, green chili, and tamarind.
- Costa Rica: Gallo Pinto. Rice and beans.
The Costa Ricans love their rice and beans, so much so that they have their own version: Gallo Pinto. Translated from the Spanish “grandpa cooking,” this dish was first used by the Spanish settlers in the 16th century as basic peasant food. It was later adopted by people from all social classes, and today it is a Costa Rican national dish—with variations that include seafood, chicken, and beef. For this meal, Costa Ricans typically use white rice, black beans, cilantro, and limes to give it its distinctly Costa Rican flavor.
- Czech Republic: Goulash and Bread Dumplings.
The Czech Republic is a country that’s big on sausages. And, as you might expect, the goulash, which is the national dish, is no exception. Goulash is a hearty stew made with beef, pork, or chicken and served with dumplings or knedliky. Goulash originates from Hungary and, as you might expect, varies from region to region. In Prague, where this dish originated, you’ll find that goulash is served with dumplings, and dumplings are eaten with bread. Goulash and Bread Dumplings. They (the dumplings) are healthy, hearty, and filling. Goulash is a stew made of beef, beef broth, onions, carrots, potatoes, paprika, and seasoning. Goulash normally contains beef and dumplings (boiled dough), but you can use any kind of meat- or fish-based stew.
- Vietnam: Pho.
Pho is a noodle soup with Vietnamese beef broth, rice noodles, and vegetables. It originated in Vietnam, but it has become popular around the world. Pho is different than many soups because of its broth, which is made from beef bones, not water. Pho includes both meat and noodles and a number of herbs and is served in large bowls. Pho originated in Vietnam and is made with beef, but chicken pho is served in the United States.
Cuisines and flavors from around the world are all over the menu these days. From poke bowls to taco toast, a new food trend seems to pop up every day. But while you may be tempted to add some foreign fare to your diet, it’s important to remember which foods you need to avoid.
Tasty and culturally diverse dishes from around the world only scratch the surface of the culinary diversity that can be found in and around us. When we think of traditional meals, we most often imagine dishes of our own country, but feast our eyes on a few of these dishes from around the world that could possibly be your next meal selection.