In honour of our ongoing deals on your favourite international dishes and our upcoming Tastebuds Food Festival, we’ve decided to take a look at some delicious national dishes from around the world.
Scholars say that a national dish is one that is strongly associated with a particular country. It can be considered a national dish for several reasons.
It’s a staple food of the country, made from a selection of locally available ingredients that are prepared in a distinctive way.
It contains a particular ‘exotic’ ingredient that is produced locally.
It is served as a festive culinary tradition that forms part of a cultural heritage.
During the ages of European empire building, nations worked hard to develop national cuisines that served as a sense of identity and a way to distinguish themselves from rivals.
National foodie identities are just as important today with UNESCO labeling several beverages, foods, and food-making processes as intangible cultural heritages of humanity.
Lavash – the preparation, meaning, and appearance of this traditional bread
Croatia, Cyprus, Greece, Italy, Morocco, Portugal & Spain
The Mediterranean Diet
Democratic People’s Republic of Korea
(sorry, we had to…)
French Gastronomy (meaning pretty much everything the French cook)
Washoku: the culinary traditions of Japan
The traditonal Mexican cuisine
Oman, Qatar, Saudia Arabia & The United Arab Emirates
Kimjang: the art of making Kimchi
Turkish Coffee Culture
Before we get started on our list, due to their diversity, the cuisines of some countries simply cannot be represented by any single national dish. Other countries also share national dishes because the foodie culture is spread across modern borders.
Futhermore, because national dishes are such a point of pride and so interwoven into a nation’s sense of identity, strong emotions can arise when trying to choose a country’s national dish, so don’t get mad at us. Thanks!
It’s hard to choose just one dish, but since we’re fearing the onset of winter, Bisque is our pick.
This smooth, creamy, highly seasoned soup is based on the strained broth of crustaceans. It was traditionally made as a way to extract flavour from imperfect shellfish that didn’t look good enough to sell at the market.
Get a taste of France this week with La Cuisine d’Olivier. You can try their traditional French food alongside their special on English-inspired Baked Chicken & Chips.
Another hard cuisine to choose just one type of dish, but we absolutely love sushi, and so does the rest of the world! Sushi refers a special type of vinegared rice with ingredients, oftentimes raw seafood, placed on top. Don’t get it confused with sashimi, that’s just the seafood without rice!
Sample Japan as part of our international deals week! Fenghe is offering discounts on their Butterfly Roll, Iza is also serving Miso Salmon Guacamole Rolls, and Naam Thai is handing out a staple of Japanese life: a Bento Box with Sole Fillet
India is a hugely diverse country that’s all about food, making it (again) tough to select one dish, so we went with Khichdi. Embarrassingly enough, we had never heard of it before! Many variations contain rice and lentils (which orginated in India), but other kinds include bajra and mung beans. In Indian culture, it’s one of the first solid foods that babies eat.
They may not be offering this special dish, but Masala Art is discounting their popular Butter Chicken while Bollywood is slashing prices on their Afghani Chicken for our International food week!
Wait, what? It’s not vodka? Seriously? – We kid. Vodka is awesome and would go especially well with these minced meat dumplings called Pelmeni. Minus the sour cream, they look a lot like Chinese dumplings, no?
Dive into fine Russian fare this week with Pushkin. They’re cooking up specials on Beef Stroganoff.
These stir-fried dried rice noodles are loaded up with egg, shrimp, beansprouts, garlic, shallots, tamarind, and fish sauce for an amazing array of flavours. This dish came into being during World War II when the country was experiencing rice shortages. The prime minister encouraged people to eat noodles instead, and this now famous Thai dish was born!
Get your fill of curry today with Chick Rice’s deal on Green Curry + a small Chicken Fried Rice or from Vietnamese restaurant Cyclo’s Cambodian-style Amok Fish Curry.
The United States: Hawaii
Seriously, if we run into another person who asks us how many hamburgers we eat a day after finding out we’re American… C’mon, everyone knows that Americans only eat two burgers a day! Haha. Although the U.S. is known for burgers, it’s a huge country with a diverse range of food. That’s why we’re looking at the litlte island of Hawaii for the national (state) dish. Poke is a salad of raw seafood with heavily Asian-influenced seasonings like furikake, green onion, soy sauce, and sesame oil. It’s a trendy food right now and can be found in more and more places on the mainland.
Try this awesome dish for an equally awesome price at Little Catch with their Mentaiko Shrimp Poke + Miso Soup combo!
Now for life’s important question: what’s for dinner?