We Bellhops have a tendency to travel with our stomachs, and often go to destinations solely for their good food, unique ingredients, and wild recipes. Today, we are sharing with our fellow travelers some of the best traditional dishes from around the world. Prepare your stomach for growling…
Curry Mee — Malaysia
Made with thin “mee-hoon” noodles made of rice, the spicy broth includes coconut milk and chili or Sambol. Optional ingredients can include tofu, prawns, cuttlefish, mint leaves, and whatever fresh vegetables you like on top. Our favorite is mushrooms and chives.
Pastitsio — Greece
This dish is by-far our favorite on the list, because it is just a good comfort food that has endured over the ages. A bottom layer of tube pasta (like rigatoni) with ground beef or lamb on top of that makes the bottom. On top of that, goes tomatoes, cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice. Pour Bechamel (Creamy White Cheese Sauce) over the top and then cover with grated cheese. When baked, the top layer of cheese is browned to perfection and every layer is a savory joy.
Manti – Turkey
This dish originated in Turkey, but it was too delicious for the Ottoman Empire to keep to themselves. The dish spread all over the world and is now considered a traditional food of Russia, India, and many Southeast Asian Countries and cultures. The dish is simple: heavily spice ground beef or ground lamb, stuff it into a pastry pocket, and fry it. Spices differ depending on the locale where it is being cooked, but it is perfection in all forms.
Rouladen – Germany
Smoked pork belly, finely chopped onions and chopped pickles make the stuffing for rouladens, which gets rolled up in very thin strips of beef. These rolls are seared on both sides and shallow-simmered in beef stock, carrots and spices until tender. While the pickles might sound like a strange ingredient, it only takes one bite of your first rouladen to completely fall in love with this traditional German dish.
Chairo Paceño – Bolivia
A mixture of lamb and beef meat cooked slowly — bones and all — until tender, and served with what look like mashed potatoes, but are really mashed Lima beans, green peas, white corn and potatoes. A lot of flavor goes into both the meat and veggie mash with hefty amounts of chili, cayenne pepper, cumin, oregano, and mint. This is such a great dish, but is hard to find outside of Bolivia. If you want to try it yourself, you can find the recipe HERE. But be advised. You are going to need a whole lot of meat and a butcher.
Soljanka – Russia
Containing pickled cucumbers with brine, and often cabbage, salted mushrooms, olives, smetana (sour cream), and dill, this traditional Russian soup is heart for a vegetarian soup, but has a bit of a tart taste to it, due to the use of pickled cucumbers and their brine. Basically it is like adding pickles and pickle juice to your vegetable soup. It might sound a bit strange, but remember that the pickles were tasty in the German Rouladen dish.
Beef Tagine – Morocco
Paprika, cinnamon, ginger, lots of pepper, turmeric, and various other Morrocan spices are rubbed onto a large diced beef shoulder and are simmered until tender. Chickpeas are added and cooked until soft. The dish is finished off with saffron threads, which gives the dish its appealing reddish-orange color.
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