Airag is a traditional drink in Mongolia. All photos courtesy of Kari Kozak Dahlstrom.
Say Mongolian food and the first thing that comes to mind is probably a modern chain restaurant. I mean, who doesn’t love a 20-foot, all-you-can-eat buffet filled with raw meat, fresh veggies, and concoct-your-own sauce? Add the excitement of a wannabe-ninja chef cooking on a 500-degree flat top grill, and you’ve got a fun and tasty dining experience. Toss in a raw egg and marvel as the chef expertly cracks and fries it with shiny three-foot tongs.
However, not only is “Mongolian barbecue” not really BBQ; it’s not actually Mongolian either. It was invented by a Taiwanese man in Beijing and...
Traveling to Cambodia as a vegetarian? Here's your (updated) guide to eating well.
Banana vendor in Kampong Chhnang province, Cambodia. Photos by Glynn Pogue
As I slurped up the last bit of spicy broth from my lunch of ramen noodle and bok choy, I felt full and satisfied. That is, until I took a final look at my bowl: Hiding at the bottom, alongside a few stray bean sprouts, was an indiscernible hunk of fatty flesh on bone. Chicken? Beef? Pork? My contentment quickly dissipated. What on Earth did I just eat?
Does this sound familiar, fellow traveling vegetarians? I'd recently gotten to Cambodia (as part of the Peace Corps), and I was still figuring out how to navigate being a...Read More
Larb tofu, pomelo salad, corn fritters and more: Here’s how (and where) to eat vegetarian and vegan—and hold the fish sauce—in Bangkok, Thailand.
Pad see ew. All photos courtesy of Kelly Iverson.
Calling all adventurous, meat-free diners: This guide is for you. Thailand may be best known for its dreamy beaches and abundance of temples, but it's also, of course, every food-lover’s dream for its inherent knack with spice and gorgeous nuanced flavors. And, happily enough, this does not exclude vegans and vegetarians!
However, as with any foreign place, it is not always easy or immediately apparent what is truly veg-friendly. If you are eating vegetarian in Thailand, there are...
A potato and pea curry from Pakistan. All photos courtesy of Clara Wiggins.
It was the summer of 2008, and we had just moved to Islamabad, caught in an intense heat that trapped us indoors, where the air-conditioning made life bearable. I had a toddler and a baby, my husband was at work all day, and most of the other families on the compound of the British High Commission where we lived were away for the holidays. Until our container of goods turned up, we didn’t even have more than a handful of toys.
Into this miserable situation came Ansa—like a savior in her beautiful flowing shalwar kameeze, helping me with child care, taking on the cleaning, being someone for me to talk to,...Read More
What to eat in Colombo, Sri Lanka? Start these 10 local dishes.
All photos courtesy of Zinara Rathnayake.
Although there are a few similarities to neighboring India, Sri Lanka’s cuisine is all its own: diverse, very spicy, and flavor-packed. Thanks to a growing expat community, the food scene in the capital, Colombo, is thriving more than ever, with tons of restaurants and cafes serving many international and fusion cuisines. But thankfully, from upscale restaurants to hole-in-the-wall eateries, Colombo still caters to those who are looking for real-deal Sri Lankan food. Here are some of the delicious dishes you just gotta try in Sri Lanka, and where to find them in Colombo.
For people who love food, one of the main reasons for choosing a Tibet tour is the culinary culture there. We’ve covered the basics of Tibetan cuisine already; now we’ll go into the dishes you can expect to eat at restaurants in Tibet. Thanks to the close geographical proximity, Tibetan food reflects influences of Indian, Chinese, and Nepalese cookery in its main dishes. However, partly due to the high altitude of the region, rice is not easily cultivated in Tibet, and therefore is not,...Read More
Part two of a three-part series brought to you by Tibet Vista, a tour agency specializing in Tibet travel since 1984 (see part one here): Meet a Tibetan tour guide.
All photos courtesy of Tibet Vista
“This job can help others learn about Tibet and make my life significant.” —Sonam Tenphel, Tibet tour guide
A group tour is only as great as the person leading it, so you want an experienced guide with both the knowledge and the passion to see it through. Enter Sonam Tenphel of Tibet Travel agency, a Tibetan native with a background in art history and a penchant for vegetable momos who considers Lhasa “the most beautiful, intriguing city in the world”—and shows it off to his...
Tibetan food is dear to our hearts—we’ve made our home in a NYC neighborhood with a large Tibetan population—so we’re pleased to work with Tibet Vista, a tour agency specializing in Tibet travel since 1984, to bring you a series of three articles on Tibetan food and travel. (See also parts two and three.)
All photos courtesy of Tibet Vista
The high-altitude environment of Tibet has shaped not only Tibetans’ lifestyle and culture, but also the food and drinks they consume. With an average altitude of more than 4,000 meters, food and drink must be high in energy content, and be able to sustain the rigorous lifestyle of the Tibetan people. Not only does this high altitude...
Roti canai + chicken leg for breakfast. All photos courtesy of Food and Footprints.
In this guest post, the duo behind Food and Footprints—fellow Queens-based eaters and travelers—share some favorite local finds from a spontaneous trip to Penang, Malaysia (never mind that they thought they were going to Cuba!).
In Malaysia, Pulau Pinang, or Penang Island, is acclaimed for its diversity and high quality of food—a fact apparent when you’re strolling through the UNESCO World Heritage city of George Town, the island’s capital (and the country’s second-largest city, behind Kuala Lumpur). Within a short stretch, there are beautiful Buddhist, Hindu, Muslim and Catholic places of...
Our writer details how to make healthy, delicious congee two ways: one traditional, one modern.
"American Girl Porridge," courtesy of Kimberly Nichols
My obsession with Asian porridges started years ago, when I found the cheaply made and nutritious bowl of ancient Chinese food called congee listed as one of the most nutritious foods in the world, according to my global herbalism textbook. It was noted that many a spry monk in the Himalayas considered three plain bowls of soupy rice a day the key to vibrant health and longevity. To that end, my herbal course suggested mixing up the plain, lovingly long-cooked rice and water recipe with a myriad of fun additions like herbs,...Read More
Photo by GusbellSStudio
Breakfast in Tokyo isn’t like your usual breakfast: Most of what you’ll find on your plate in the morning is savory enough to make an excellent lunch or dinner dish. And the meals aren’t only delicious, but they’re also healthier than something like cereal or pancakes.
Break your fast the way locals do with these seven breakfast staples:
1. Steamed Rice (Gohan)
Gohan means “meal.” And how appropriate—steamed white rice (hakumai) or brown rice (genmai) are staples for almost every meal in Japan, so you’re guaranteed to have this for breakfast at least once. The rice comes out a bit stickier than you might be used to, making it easier to pick up with...Read More
All photos by Coen Wubbels
One thing was certain: Had we searched for dinner on our own upon arriving in Seoul, we never would have eaten fish cakes, rice cakes in gochujang, fried tofu, and anchovies with peanuts for our first meal. We don’t speak Korean, and we hadn’t yet done much research about what to eat here. Where would we have found these dishes? How would we even have known they exist?
My partner, Coen, and I were in luck. A Korean couple had followed our travel adventures on our website for a while, and when they learned we were coming to their country, Jin and Suna offered us accommodation in their home. Local people inviting you to their homes is always a gift, but...Read More
Black sheng jian bao, a modern twist on a Shanghai classic
Shanghai is the biggest, and some would say most incredible, city in China. It’s such a vibrant and fast-paced place, it’s no wonder Shanghai cuisine emphasizes snack foods and street eats: Here, you can grab a bite at almost any time of the day. To celebrate that, here are 10 of our favorite street eats and snacks in Shanghai.
All photos by Eating Adventures.
Xiao Long Bao (Soup Dumplings)
Xiao long bao was first made in a dim sum shop in Shanghai in 1871. It is one of the few Shanghainese specialties that have become well known around the world (particularly in New York City, where locals have adopted the dish as...Read More
These egg waffles are one of Hong Kong's iconic street foods.
It’s no secret that Hong Kong is a foodie’s mecca. Local Hong Kongers take their food so seriously that people greet each other with the phrase nei sek faan meia: “Have you eaten yet?”
With one of the highest densities of restaurants in the world, visitors are spoiled for choice. Which creates a problem we’d all like to have: Where to start? Here are our tips for 10 must-try foods in Hong Kong:
All photos by Eating Adventures except where indicated.
Once you’ve had great roast goose there is no turning back—you’ll forever be haunted by the search for more. Goose has succulent red meat, and when...Read More
Photo: Pavel L Photo and Video/Shutterstock
When you first travel to a new place, the sights, smells, and sounds are often so new that there’s no question you are somewhere you’ve never been before. Traffic and language sound different. The lights, colors, architecture, cars, and clothing are all worthy of increased attention. The smell of the air itself can even indicate that you’ve arrived somewhere foreign and different.
These senses all combine to highlight the new wonders that await you, but it’s often, of course, when you sit down to a meal in a brand-new place that you truly discover the unnameable heart and soul of wherever you are. Nowhere is this truer than in...Read More
It was our first night in Chiang Mai. After a 24-hour journey of buses, overnight trains, and general mishap, all my friend Noele and I wanted were long showers and a great meal. Before this trip, we’d had dreams of Thailand’s notorious midnight raves, but even then, our real draw to the “country of smiles” was the food. We wanted authentic pad Thai, exotic fruits, robust coffee—all of it.
We found our addiction early on. We were seated at the night market, surrounded by one of everything—heaping plates of fried rice, stir-fried seafood with sprigs of leafy basil—but our forks couldn’t stop dipping into the som tam. The spicy green-papaya salad has long been a favorite in many...Read More
Contrary to what you might gather from your neighborhood Chinese eatery, there isn’t really a fixed recipe for fried rice. It evolved from throwing leftovers in the wok to stir-fry—one of the sustainable ways the older generation ensured every scrape of food was eaten, not wasted—and voilà, you get a really tasty variety of dishes.
Fried rice tastes best, therefore, with leftover, day-old rice: The grains lose moisture overnight, giving them a harder, crunchier texture—perfect for this dish—and they’re less likely to clump when you stir-fry them with everything else. Cook the rice the night (or at least several hours) before, leave it out to cool for an hour or so, then put it in...Read More
This destination spotlight crosses the globe to Cebu, in the central Philippines, an appealing destination for business travelers, beachgoers—and people who like to eat. Our writer, a Cebu resident, demonstrates why in our 20-dish-strong Cebu guide. Here’s a taste.
Camotes Islands, Cebu, two hours by boat off the mainland. Photos by Mona Polo
Located in the center of the 7,107 islands that make up the Philippines, Cebu (“se-boo”) is a tropical playground disguised as a business hub…or is it the other way around? Cebu the island—the province and cosmopolitan capital city share the same name as well—is 156 miles and just 28.8 miles at its widest, so travelers for pleasure or...Read More
Thank you to all who participated in our recent Taiwan contest! We had asked for Facebook likes on users' photo uploads—it was a close race, but we’re ready to announce our winners.
The grand prize winner, who will receive a free night in Taipei at Bigfoot Hostel plus NTD 1,000/US$35, is user evyyang, with 121 Facebook likes on her upload of a frosty Taiwanese dessert. May we suggest you spend your winnings on more of these sweets, Evy?
Grilled king oyster mushrooms, by user mintmaple
I woke up to a loud pitter-patter on my tin roof—another cold, gray morning in central Cambodia. The rainy season had stretched on for weeks and left me with a perpetual sniffle and a cough I couldn’t shake. I needed to eat something to warm my belly.
I ventured into my village’s winding market for breakfast, the dirt ground muddy and wet. Older ladies and schoolchildren grabbing a meal before class hunched below the market’s makeshift sheet-metal rooftops, slurping up porridge from mismatched sets of porcelain bowls. I settled in at my favorite vendor’s stall, a little stand with nothing more than a rice cooker, a portable burner, a sagging wooden bench, and a young girl with a...Read More
Tsua bing, or shaved ice, in Taiwan. Photo by user hungryel
One look at the images in our Taiwan section, and it’s no surprise the island is such a beloved food destination. The Eat Your World team dreams of one day feasting in the streets and night markets of Taipei, but before we get there, we’re going to help some travelers with their own visit: We’re giving away a free night at a popular downtown hostel to a few lucky travelers—and a cash prize to one (may we suggest spending it on food?). To enter, all you have to do is upload a photo or story about local food to EYW…and then tell all your friends: The three users whose entries receive the most Facebook LIKES win!
HOW TO...Read More
The spread at Seng Cheong [All photos by Juliana Loh].
In this guest post, Juliana Loh relays her itinerary for taking “heavyweight food friends from Hong Kong” out to eat in Macau for exactly 12 hours. Because it was during the Chinese New Year holidays, some of her favorite spots were closed, but she came up with great alternatives as needed—all listed here, should you ever have a 12-hour layover in Macau.
Pork chop buns at Tai Lei Loi Kei (called “Da Li Lai” in Mandarin)
In Taipa—the smaller of Macau’s two islands—this place is an institution. It used to have an outdoor eating area where people sit to eat pork chop buns, slurp noodles, and nibble on their curry fishball...
It’s so simple, yet so easy to screw up: Making rice is at the heart of Japanese cuisine, and our friend Megumi recently shared with us exactly how it should be done, as well as instructions for making vinegared sushi rice and temaki, or hand-rolled sushi. All photos by Trix Rosen, copyright 2012.
A basic salmon temaki
The Japanese are rice eaters. Traditionally we eat cooked, short-grain rice almost every day. So we are very fussy about rice: its freshness, texture, firmness, softness, flavor, moisture, size, and shininess. Good rice is grown in the areas where the water is fresh and clean. Of course, the fresher, the better! The new crop that arrives in the market every fall...Read More
In this guest post, Sukanya of the food and travel blog Saffronstreaks shares with us the recipe for a favorite Bengali milk-based sweet from Kolkata (Calcutta): aam sandesh, or Indian fudge infused with mango. Of course, this “fudge” is not made with chocolate but with cottage-cheese-like chhana (also spelled chenna); the translation stems more from the dish’s texture. For more on milk-based treats from India, check out our Delhi sweets section.
Bengalis’ love for sweets is a well-known affair, and sandesh (“fudge”) is one they particularly adore. The great Bengali luncheon always ends on a sweet note,
and it doesn’t stop there; it continues with late-afternoon tea and dinner as...
We recently had the pleasure of cooking one evening with our friend Megumi, who shared with us these favorite warm-weather recipes from Japan. Both are very simple and fresh-tasting, perfect for the dog days of summer. Below she describes each in her own words.
Hiyayakko (Cold Tofu)
Tofu was one of the foods we ate almost every day when I was a child. Back then it was not mass-produced, and there were many local tofu makers. My mother bought fresh tofu every morning from a neighborhood grocery store, often using it for miso soup. But on a hot summer day, we had hiyayakko as a side dish for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. This remains one of the most popular tofu side dishes enjoyed...Read More
We often feel like we’re on a scavenger hunt when we travel for EYW. Sometimes we have just three days in a city to find all the foods we’ve researched, come up with good alternatives, entertain new ideas suggested by locals we meet, identify suitable “burn it off” locations. Despite the inevitable last-day dash around said city to tie up loose ends, we’ve become super efficient at these tasks. But doing it in, say, Boston and doing it in Agra, a garbage-strewn Indian city congested with all manner of human and animal traffic, are two very different things.Read More