Underrated Cuisines Around the World
Today's post is all about underrated cuisines around the world. You may know them by name but what do you really know about each cuisine? Each cuisine has their own spices, techniques and ways of eating them that makes them well worth trying. I have compiled a list of 28 different cuisines that I had no idea what they were all about. Think about this if you ask a person if they want Italian food, they will know exactly what you're talking about and might even know regional dishes to eat. However if you ask a person if they want to eat Laotian and you'll probably get "what is that?" as a response. No judgement. I didn't know a lot about these dishes until I decided to do this post. I have included one special dish from each cuisine along with the picture of said dish. Enjoy!!
Burmese cuisine is mainly an amalgam of cuisines from various regions of Myanmar. It has also been influenced by various cuisines of neighbouring countries, in particular, China, India and Thailand.
Modern Burmese cuisine comes in two general varieties: coastal and inland. The cuisine in the coastal areas, such as that in the main city Yangon, makes extensive use of fish and seafood-based products like fish sauce and ngapi (fermented seafood). The cuisine in inland regions, such as Upper Myanmar and hill regions, tends to use more meat and poultry although modern inland cooking too has incorporated freshwater fish and shrimp as a source of protein in several ways: fresh, salted whole or filleted, salted and dried, made into a salty paste, or fermented sour and pressed.
Burmese cuisine also includes a variety of salads (a thoke), centred on one major ingredient, ranging from starches like rice, wheat and rice noodles, glass noodles and vermicelli, to potato, ginger, tomato, kaffir lime, long bean, lahpet (pickled tea leaves), and ngapi (fish paste). These salads have always been popular as fast foods in Burmese cities.
Mohinga is the traditional breakfast dish and is Burma's national dish.
Lao cuisine or Laotian cuisine is the cuisine of Laos, which is distinct from other Southeast Asian cuisines.
The staple food of the Lao is steamed sticky rice, which is eaten by hand. In fact, the Lao eat more sticky rice than any other people in the world. Sticky rice is considered the essence of what it means to be Lao. It has been said that no matter where they are in the world, sticky rice will always be the glue that holds the Lao communities together, connecting them to their culture and to Laos. Often the Lao will refer to themselves as "luk khao niaow", which can be translated as "children or descendants of sticky rice".
The most famous Lao dish is larb, a spicy mixture of marinated meat or fish that is sometimes raw (prepared like ceviche) with a variable combination of herbs, greens, and spices. Another Lao invention is a spicy green papaya salad dish known as tam mak hoong, more famously known to the West as som tam.
Lao cuisine has many regional variations, corresponding in part to the fresh foods local to each region. A French legacy is still evident in the capital city, Vientiane, where baguettes are sold on the street and French restaurants are common and popular, which were first introduced when Laos was a part of French Indochina.
Afghan cuisine is largely based upon the nation's chief crops, such as wheat, maize, barley and rice. Accompanying these staples are native fruits and vegetables as well as dairy products such as milk, yogurt doogh and whey. Kabuli palaw is the national dish of Afghanistan. The nation's culinary specialties reflect its ethnic and geographic diversity. Afghanistan is known for its high-quality pomegranates, grapes, and sweet, rugby-football shaped melons.