A Celebration of International Cuisines
This August 206 nations from around the world will gather together and compete in Brazil, making this the perfect time to celebrate our world of eclectic flavors. Let’s take a trip around the globe so that you can have a taste of international cuisine right in your home kitchen. First stop: Brazil!
What fresh local ingredients can athletes look forward while visiting Brazil? Root vegetables like cassava (what tapioca is made from) and yams, and fruit such as açaí, mango, papaya, guava, passion fruit and pineapple are found in dishes nationwide. Among the popular national dishes are vatapá, a shrimp stew made with finely ground peanuts; moqueca, a fish stew prepared with tomatoes, onions, garlic; and acarajé, a fritter made from black-eyed pea flour.
Chile: Thanks to diverse climate and geography, Chile produces a wide variety of fruits and vegetables, and the long coastline provides an abundance of local seafood. Traditional ingredients include choclo (corn), potatoes, quinoa, olives, avocado and native fruits such as lúcuma and cherimoya. Quinoa salads and vegetable and fish stews are popular main dishes, while fruit is used in many desserts.
The main meal in Morocco is eaten midday, and lunches can last for several hours. Meals typically start with hot and cold salads such as taktouka, which is made with tomatoes and peppers. Next comes a tagine, a slow-cooked stew, and main dishes often include couscous, vegetables and poultry. Wheat bread is eaten at every meal and is used to pick up the food. At the end of the meal, mint tea is served with dessert such as seffa, a sweet couscous made with cinnamon and raisins.
We often discuss the health benefits of the Mediterranean diet, and traditional Greek cooking incorporates plenty of nutritious foods. Spices such as oregano, mint, garlic, onion and dill bring flavorful life to fresh local ingredients including tomato, eggplant, potato, green beans, okra, green peppers, and onions. Heart-healthy olive oil is the primary fat in the diet, and fish is one of the main sources of protein. Popular vegetarian dishes include spanakorizo, made with spinach and rice; briám, stewed vegetables in tomato sauce; and aginares a la polita, an artichoke stew. Desserts typically include nuts, honey, and fruit.
Though cuisine varies by region in India, vegetarianism is widespread throughout the country. Whole-wheat flour, rice and pulses such as lentils and chickpeas provide the backbone of the diet, while spices like cumin, turmeric, ginger and garam masala bring bold flavor. Available fruits and vegetables depend on the season, but popular choices are banana, mango, squash, eggplant and cauliflower.
Thai cuisine is complex and flavorful. Ingredients like fish sauce, curry paste, chilies, garlic, limes and herbs are used to balance sweet, salty, and bitter flavors in dishes. Recipes such as braised plantains with spices, vegetable curry, green papaya salad, broccoli salad and stir-fried greens are examples of plant-based Thai delicacies.
Back in the United States, celebrate with our patriotic Red, White and Berry Salad made with bananas, berries and the DOLE® Spinach Cherry Almond Bleu Salad Kit.
Published August 1, 2016