With so much to see and experience in this world, it’s just hard to stay in one place. With every culture being so different, it’s nice to know that the thing that unites us all is our love for food. Every culture has its own cuisine, with its unique twists and flavors. Thus, while vacationing abroad, one should always attempt to try as many traditional dishes as possible. However, with so many national cuisines to choose from, one might wonder — what dishes are customary in other countries? Can we apply certain meals in our households as well? We certainly can.
If we take the time to research new foods to try, we can see for ourselves just how delicious local cuisine in other countries is. With the invention of the internet, it has become easier than ever to get access to the recipes. We can try to make a local dish at home, but, let’s agree, nothing beats the real taste of truly locally made food. With food being the greatest representative of a culture and a nation, it’s only normal to want to get the real taste of it. So, if you are out vacationing, don’t stay in your room, go out, try to taste the food of the locals and see what you are missing!
Below, we’ve compiled a list of food around the world to try to get the taste of international cuisines. The list below might just be the list of exotic food you have been looking for. Either alone or with friends, the listed food can be made not only in the country of origin but also in your kitchen. Saw one that started up the saliva in your mouth? Upvote it. Tried one at home or in the country of origin? Comment below on how it turned out and how tasty it was!
#1 Georgia, Khachapuri
A runny egg is in the middle of fluffy bread that has been filled with various cheeses in the Georgian delicacy is known as khachapuri. It is widely consumed as a side dish or a snack and is popular in both Georgia and Russia. Khachapuri comes in a wide variety of types, with the boat-shaped Adjarian khachapuri and the Imeretian khachapuri being two of the more popular types.
Image credits: simplyhomecooked.com
#2 Israel, Falafel
Falafels are fried balls of chickpeas (or fava beans), a popular street snack in Israel. They are frequently served with pita bread and hummus, as well as other condiments such as tahini sauce, spicy sauce, and salad. They are also well-liked by vegetarians and vegans because the dish is entirely plant-based.
Image credits: haaretz.com
#3 Hungary, Goulash
Goulash is a paprika- and other spice-seasoned Hungarian stew made with meat and vegetables. The cuts are typically made from the shank, shin, or shoulders of beef, veal, pork, or lamb. The typical veggies that are included in the stew are potatoes, carrots, and peppers. Near the end of cooking, a small amount of white wine and wine vinegar is also added for taste. Székely gulyás, which substitutes potatoes with sauerkraut and sour cream, and paprikás krumpli, a traditional potato stew made with paprika, are two examples of the dish's variations.
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#4 Greece, The Moussaka
Similar to a unique kind of lasagna, moussaka is a traditional Greek dish that normally consists of layers of eggplant, potato, and meat (often minced lamb). After baking the entire mixture in the oven, a rich bechamel sauce is added on top. It is possible to find other versions of the dish, such as papoutsakia (a tiny baked eggplant packed with meat) and a vegan variant. No matter how it is prepared, moussaka is a flavorful and fulfilling dish that will not disappoint.
Image credits: recipetineats.com
#5 Ireland, Irish Stew
Traditional stews like Irish stew are produced with ingredients like lamb or mutton, potatoes, carrots, onions, and herbs. The ingredients are cooked until tender by simmering them in water or stock. It is filling and hearty, and making big quantities of it is simple. Irish stew is likely to satisfy, whether you're searching for a traditional Irish dish or a warm winter supper.
Image credits: simplyrecipes.com
#6 Algeria, Couscous
In the Maghreb region, which includes Algeria, couscous is a common dish. Semolina, a coarse flour made from hard durum wheat, is steamed in their version of the recipe, which is also their national meal. Lamb stew, carrots, summer squash, chickpeas, cinnamon, and buttermilk are added on top. Another option is to eat the dish as a dessert, topping the steamed semolina with almonds, cinnamon, and sugar and serving it with milk or buttermilk.
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#7 Croatia, Zagorski Strukli
The Croatian pastry dish known as zagorski štrukli is made of dough that has been filled with cottage cheese, eggs, sour cream, and salt. Both baking and boiling in salted water are viable options for preparing the pastry. Štrukli that has been boiled can be garnished with fried breadcrumbs or included in a flavorful soup. More cream is added before cooking for the baked trukli. Trukli is fantastic since there are many different ways to consume it, including as a main course, an appetizer, or even a dessert.
Image credits: chasingthedonkey.com
#8 Finland, Rye Bread
Rye bread is unquestionably one of the unavoidable staple dishes of Finnish cuisine. This sourdough bread, which only requires a few basic ingredients like rye flour, leaven, and water, has captured the hearts of people all over the world in addition to the locals. Additionally, there are many types of rye bread, including the round limppu (loaf) and the donut-shaped reikäleipä. Due to rye bread's adaptability, you can enjoy it whenever and however you like, whether it be in a sandwich, as a side with soups and other foods, or in a variety of other ways.
Image credits: true-north-kitchen.com
#9 Italy, Ragu Alla Bolognese
A meat-based sauce from the Italian city of Bologna is known as ragu alla Bolognese. It is traditionally prepared with ground meat (beef, veal, or pork), tomato paste, wine (usually white), milk, and soffritto (celery, carrot, onion). After being slow-cooked for a number of hours, the sauce produces a rich and savory dish that may be served with various types of pasta. Although there are numerous variations of this timeless sauce, Italians and aspiring chefs all over the world still adore the traditional recipe.
Image credits: greatitalianchefs.com
#10 Indonesia, Nasi Goreng
A popular Indonesian dish called nasi goreng is prepared with (leftover) rice, veggies, chunks of meat, and other seasonings such as sweet soy sauce. In addition to a range of side dishes including pickled vegetables, fresh cucumber slices, or fried shallots, it is frequently served with a fried egg on top. Although nasi goreng is typically associated with breakfast, it can be consumed at any time of the day.
Image credits: recipetineats.com
#11 Canada, Poutine
Poutine is a delicious alternative to traditional French fries that you must try if you want something different. It is a straightforward but delicious dish comprised of French fries, cheese curds, and a thin layer of beef or chicken gravy. It is believed to have originated in Quebec. There is always something fresh for your taste buds to discover as the flavor differs from poutinerie to poutinerie (Canadian eateries specializing in the dish).
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#12 China, Peking Duck
Peking duck is a well-known Chinese dish that originated in Beijing and is renowned for its thin, crispy skin and deliciously soft flesh. Whole ducks are used to make it, which are first marinated in a unique sauce before being roasted in a wood-fired oven. In restaurants, a chef carves the Peking duck in front of the customers and serves it in three stages, beginning with the skin. The dish is typically served with cucumber, hoisin sauce, and spring onions, along with Mandarin pancakes.
Image credits: redhousespice.com
#13 Bosnia, Cevapi
Bosnia is the country of origin for the dish called cevapi. It is formed into little sausage-like fingers from two different varieties of beef mince. After grilling, they are served with ajvar (can also be sour cream), somun (Bosnian flatbread), and raw chopped onions. The dish is typically consumed by hand, and any extra grease is absorbed by the bread. Along with Croatia and Serbia, other Balkan nations have begun to embrace cevapi. It is available from street sellers and restaurants in Bosnia and frequently consumed as a quick meal or snack.
Image credits: cardamommagazine.com
#14 Guatemala, Chicken Pepian
Chicken pepian, as the name suggests, is a classic Guatemalan dish that includes chicken stew. The dish's distinctive flavor comes from the recado (sauce), which is a mixture of ground sesame and pumpkin seeds, corn tortillas, tomatoes, onions, and chilis. The recipe can be either moderate or flaming spicy, depending on the cook's preference, and is best served with rice and tortillas.
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#15 Balkan, Pljeskavica
A common grilled meal in the Balkan region is called pljeskavica. The verb "pljesak," which means "to clap hands," is where it gets its name. A spiced patty made of two or more meats, including as beef, lamb, and hog, is one of the key components of the dish. These are then "slapped" back and forth between hands until they are of a consistency suitable for grilling. Onions, ajvar (roasted red pepper sauce), and kajmak (a type of cheese in the Balkan region) are frequently served with it. Using lepinja (flatbread), you can even eat it as a burger.
Image credits: cookingtheglobe.com
#16 Bulgaria, Shopska Salad
The most well-known cold meal in Bulgaria is called shopska salad, which is made of tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, and peppers. Then a thick layer of sirene cheese (Bulgarian white brine cheese) is placed on top of it. Its hues are reminiscent of the colors of the Bulgarian flag, and it is also the nation's national dish. Typically, the salad receives a mild dressing of sunflower oil and, occasionally, vinegar. Although you can eat the meal by itself, it also works well as a side dish, particularly for grilled meats.
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#17 India, Chaat
Indian street vendors or food carts typically sell the savory snack known as chaat. Chaat comes in a variety of forms, but they all share the same combination of crispy, acidic, and sweet flavors. Alu chaat, which consists of little chunks of crispy fried potato, and cheela-besan pancakes are two examples of chaat varieties. Fried flatbread, dahi (yogurt), sev (thin dried yellow salty noodles), and chaat masala (a type of powder spice mix) are typical ingredients in chaat.
Image credits: indianhealthyrecipes.com
#18 Belarus, Draniki
Grating potatoes and onions, then frying them in oil, is how Belarusians traditionally prepare draniki (potato pancakes). Usually served with sour cream or applesauce, or with bacon or sausage on occasion. The dish is frequently consumed for breakfast or dinner and can be served as a side dish or a main meal. Draniki is a tasty alternative that is sure to please, whether you're seeking for something new to try or you just want comfort food.
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#19 Lithuania, Cepelinai
Cepelinai, also known as zeppelins, are a traditional Lithuanian potato-meat dumpling. They are created from grated potatoes that have been packed with dried cottage cheese, ground meat (often pork), or mushrooms. After that, the dish is formed into a sizable oval that, hence the name, resembles a zeppelin, and cooked in boiling water. Typically, cepelinai are served with a sour cream dollop and bacon crumbs. They are a typical Lithuanian meal that is frequently consumed at special occasions or as comfort food.
Image credits: thespruceeats.com
#20 Costa Rica, Gallo Pinto
Spanish for "spotted rooster," gallo pinto is a typical rice and bean dish from Costa Rica. Typically, bell peppers, coriander, finely chopped onions, and garlic are used to cook the rice and beans. Salsa Lizano, a condiment created with several vegetables and spices, is then used to season it, giving the food its distinctive flavor. Breakfast dishes like gallo pinto are frequently served with natilla (Costa Rican sour cream), fried or scrambled eggs, tortillas, and avocado.
Image credits: evolvingtable.com
#21 El Salvador, Pupusas
In El Salvador, pupusas are a well-liked street snack. A thick flatbread made of cornmeal (or rice flour) is what it is made of, and it is typically loaded with various foods including cheese, chicharron, squash, and refried beans. It is generally served with a side of tomato salsa and pickled cabbage (curtido). In accordance with a long-standing tradition, pupusa is likewise consumed with one hand.
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#22 Cuba, Ropa Vieja
Shredded beef, tomato sauce, onions, and peppers are the main ingredients of the classic Cuban dish known as ropa vieja. The dish's name, which translates as "old clothes," comes from a local myth in which a poor man prayed for a miracle, which resulted in a pot of boiled, shredded clothing turning into a savory stew. Typically eaten with rice, the dish pairs well with cold beer, maduros (fried sweet plantains), and black beans prepared in the Cuban style.
Image credits: daringgourmet.com
#23 Ecuador, Bolon De Verde
A well-known Ecuadorian morning meal composed of cheese and fried green plantain fritters. In order to make bolon de verde, green plantains are mashed, then formed into balls, stuffed with cheese, chicharrón, and ground peanuts, and then deep-fried until crispy and golden brown. When visiting Ecuador, you should absolutely try this delicacy, which is also one of the best street foods served there.
Image credits: laylita.com
#24 Bolivia, Salteña
Bolivian salteñas are a delightful type of savory pastry. Although it resembles the empanada, its soupy interior consisting of meat (either pork, beef, or chicken) and a spicy sauce mixture (olives, raisins, and potatoes) makes it unique. This luscious pastry is prepared differently in different parts of the nation, such as Cochabamba, Sucre, and Potosi.
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#25 Chile, Pastel De Choclo
The classic Chilean dish known as pastel de choclo is cooked with beef (or chicken) and choclo, a type of corn. It resembles shepherd's pie, but corn is used in place of potatoes. The choclo kernels are crushed and fried into a paste while the beef and chicken simmer in various flavors. Then, these are put together in a round clay pot with the choclo paste on the bottom, the beef or chicken filling on top, more choclo paste on top, and cooked.
Image credits: chileanfoodandgarden.com
#26 Benin, Kuli-Kuli
Benin, a country in West Africa, is known for its traditional snack known as kuli-kuli. It is created by forming ground peanuts into tiny balls or long sticks and deep frying them in their own oils. Other nations, including Ghana and Nigeria, are also fans of the snack. Kuli-kuli can be crushed and added to salads as a pleasant and nutritious snack. Additionally, you can have it with garri soakings, a sweet dish comprised of garri, sugar, and water.
Image credits: kuli-kuli.com
#27 Australia, Roast Lamb
Roast lamb is the best way to bring people together at the dinner table, especially in Australia. It is made from lamb that has been marinated in oil, rosemary, and garlic. It is then roasted to perfection along with potatoes. The meat that is produced is tasty and soft, and it pairs well with some gravy. Although roast lamb is frequently linked with Australia, it is also well-liked in New Zealand and the United Kingdom. Roast lamb is always a favorite among the diners, regardless of where it is prepared.
Image credits: bestrecipes.com
#28 Afghanistan, Kabuli Pulao
Afghanistan's national dish is called Kabuli Pulao, also known as Qabeli Palaw or Kabuli Palaw. In addition to steamed basmati rice, raisins, and carrots, the dish is created with beef or lamb that has been cooked with various spices. With a touch of sweetness and a distinctive texture, these components give it a distinct and savory flavor that tantalizes the palate. In other varieties, apricots and roasted almonds are among the dried fruits and nuts that are used.
Image credits: foreignfork.com
#29 Basque, Bacalao Al Pil Pil
Salted cod, garlic, chili peppers, and olive oil are the main ingredients of the traditional Basque dish known as bacalao al pil pil. Cooking the ingredients slowly in a small amount of oil causes the cod to produce gelatin, which combines with the oil to create the dish's signature rich, creamy sauce. Usually, the dish is served with rice, boiled potatoes, or crusty bread.
Image credits: bascofinefoods.com
#30 Guyana, Pepperpot
A Guyanese stew known as pepperpot is created with meat (often beef) and spices including cinnamon, hot peppers, and cassareep (cassava root sauce). It is customary to offer this dish only at special occasions like Christmas because it takes so long to prepare. This hearty and warming stew pairs best with some rice, roti, and other Guyanese-style home bread. You may also serve it with boiled veggies like cassava, sweet potatoes, and plantains for more taste.
Image credits: travelfoodatlas.com