Do you yearn to drink wine on a Venetian gondola? Have you daydreamed about eating curry in Goa? Well, while travel can sometimes be hindered by lack of time or an empty bank account, it’s not impossible to experience faraway cuisines at home. As you fill your piggy bank for your next exotic getaway, why not whet your appetite for global travel by whipping up some international dishes as an appetizer to your getaway?
Check out easy ways to bring the world to you with signature ingredients from around the world that add flare to any meal.
Africa — A large, beautiful, and sometimes wild continent, Africa has a distinctive culinary history, one that is very much the same now as it was thousands of years ago. While American soul food was born from African-Americans, African food itself is entirely different due to the continent's resources, geography, economy, and its people.
Ingredients: cornmeal, sweet potato, couscous, cinnamon, collard greens
The Caribbean — With such a melting pot of cultures in the island nations, it was tough to not adapt flavorful dishes. Tropical fruit and citrus, global spices, and grilling over open fires makes for some divine creations — not to mention, fun is a major ingredient!
Ingredients: lime, plantains, scotch bonnet peppers, seafood, citrus
Latin America — The customs and dishes are as diverse as the lands that they come from. Spanning North, Central and South America as well as the Caribbean and Europe, the Latin culture is a colorful one with a rich history.
Ingredients: avocado, cilantro, quinoa, scallions, cumin
Click here for the Mushroom Ceviche recipe pictured left.
Greece — Like their Italian neighbors, the Greeks love to mix food and company, and each meal is planned with guests in mind. A fun and festive country, Greece's food is fresh, light and very close to its roots. Greek cuisine is exactly what it has been for centuries, as it hasn't changed much since ancient times — the flavors, ingredients, and traditions have stood the test of time.
Ingredients: olives, olive oil, pita bread, garbanzo beans, lemon
Click here to see the Spanikopita Triangle recipe pictured left.
Italy — Hands down, one of the most popular cuisines in the world! Pizza, pasta, tomato sauce — Italian food definitely holds a top spot on the "what are you in the mood to eat?" list. Full of flavor, history, and even romance (aren’t most dinner dates at Italian restaurants?), it’s no wonder that Italian food is loved worldwide.
Ingredients: tomatoes, pasta, basil, oregano, garlic
France — I bet you’re thinking creamy, cheesy, and rich right about now. Or Julia Child, perhaps? Either way, you’d be right! The most lavish and famed of all the food in the world, French dishes and techniques have influenced multitudes of worldwide chefs and home cooks alike.
Ingredients: mushrooms, cream, crusty bread, spinach, eggplant
India — Indian cuisine and culture have evolved significantly over time due to the variety of influences brought in by rulers and global visitors. However, despite the revolving door of travelers and reigns, Indian food never lost its original identity; rather it has become richer, having assimilated the myriad influences over time.
Ingredients: garam masala, fenugreek, tamarind, turmeric, coriander
Japan — Japanese dishes are fresh, healthy, and low in fat, in addition to being very lightly seasoned so as to enhance the natural flavors of the ingredients in a particular dish. In Japan, healthy eating is a way of life.
Ingredients: matcha, nori, miso, wasabi, daikon
Click here for the Matcha Green Tea Ice Cream recipe pictured left.
China — Whisk together 1/4 cup soy milk and arrowroot until well incorporated. Then add the matcha until you have no clumps. Set aside.
Ingredients: tofu, bean sprouts, soy sauce, ginger, rice vinegar
Thailand — What was once known as Siam, Thailand became came to be more than 4,000 years ago. Its cuisine, because its people migrated from southern China, is heavily influenced by Chinese as well as Indian foods. Although, Thai food is unique all on its own.
Ingredients: peanuts, coconut, mango, kaffir lime, lemongrass