Trying new Foods while Traveling

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did so. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”

Mark Twain

Everyone eats.

It’s just something we have to do. A basic survival trait. We need to feed our body’s requirement for energy. That doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy it!

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Cooked salmon and smoked salmon

Eating is one pleasure that everyone can enjoy. And we all enjoy it differently. Some people don’t like red meat (though that still boggles my mind) while others can’t abide the taste of mint, like me. Although, Thin Mint cookies are an acceptable form of mint at any time.  Some don’t like the consistency of yogurt, while others like tofu.

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Buffalo burger and seafood au grautin

With these varied tastes in mind, there will be dishes all around the world that you have never tried that may end up being your favorite meal. So why not try it?

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Roasted lamb and cheese plate

I’ve traveled to several countries, and always do my best to try the local specialties. Sometimes it’s more than a dare than a taste – like with haggis in Scotland, which is a grain-stuffed sausage made in sheep’s intestines or hakarl in Iceland, which is rotted shark. But haggis ended up being something I really like! The hakarl was meh – but not terrible. Although I suspect I was given a weak, tourist-friendly wimpy version of it!

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Roasted lamb and sliced puffin

I’ve tried whale and puffin in Iceland, and both were absolutely delicious. I’ve tried black pudding and white pudding in Ireland, and enjoyed them for breakfast every day.

Even in your own country, there are gastronomical delights to sample. I’ve tried scrapple, a dish of well, I’m not really sure what’s in it. But it has scraps and trimmings, with cornmeal and flour. It was OK, nothing I’d write home about, but the Amish love it.

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Garlic mussels and fish-n-chips, and smiley face Cappuchino

The escargot, snails, were delicious. Granted, I tried them first in a British pub in Dania, Florida, and they were cooked in garlic butter with a puff pastry on top – but still delicious!

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Whale steak and lamb

Some dishes I loved from Miami, where I grew up, include ceviche, conch fritters, and flan… which are, respectively, a salad made from raw seafood and ‘cooked’ with citrus juices, fried pieces of seafood and batter, and a custard dessert made with caramel.

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Caramel cinnamon roll, caramel jelly doughnut, and gravlax open sandwich.

At almost every pub in Ireland, for instance, they serve lamb stew – and in Iceland, meat soup (which is also a lamb stew) is endemic and delicious.

Also in Ireland, goat cheese and fruit salads are everywhere – each one is different, each one is delicious. Goat’s cheese, fruit compote, lettuce, balsamic vinegar dressing… wonderful!

And you don’t have to break the bank to try new foods. Street foods are everywhere and cheap. Grocery stores in a foreign country can turn into an hours-long exploration! One of my favorite things is checking out the cheese section at any new place.

Even something as simple as beef heart, venison, buffalo or ostrich meat can broaden your horizons. I’m always up for a good buffalo burger!

So, expand your options, try something new today. Even if you hit the same restaurant every week – try something you’ve never tried!  To quote the immortal George Carlin, “How do you know you don’t like it, if you’ve never even tried it?”

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Don’t miss information on Celtic myth and history, as well as practical travel planning tips, and hidden places, in my travel books.

– Stunning, Strange and Secret: A Guide to Hidden Scotland
– Mythical, Magical, Mystical: A Guide to Hidden Ireland
More info at Green Dragon Artist :: Home,
Christy Jackson Nicholas, Author, and
Tirgearr Publishing – Christy Nicholas

Green Dragon Artist Blog

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I am an artist, accountant and author living in western New York, transplanted from Denmark, Michigan, Florida, West Virginia, Pennsylvania (in that order!) I love the beauty of the world and sharing it with others through jewelry, photography, digital painting and writing.

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Posted in Photography, Travel

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