Every place I travel, I bring flavors back with me and try to recreate those dishes in my kitchen.
Food and travel are kind of inseparable. When you go somewhere, you take communion with that place through what you eat there. When people emigrate, they carry their food with them, and over time that becomes part of the new landscape. In both these ways travelling expands our individual and collective palates – and minds! Could you imagine living in this city without the foods that come from elsewhere?
For this dinner, traveller, blogger and cook Ruchika Bhatia compiles a culinary travelogue, sharing with you a selection of favourite flavours and dishes inspired by her travels.
A cheese board is always a great place to start a meal; a few kinds of Italian cheese — something soft and creamy, something firm and savoury, and definitely a sheep’s cheese — with some classic Italian salamis, alongside fruits & crackers. Perfect with a glass of Ripasso or Moscato.
Grits & Bacon Bites (Louisiana & Jamaica)
A southern soul food staple, corn grits, gets a Caribbean twist with a hit of spicy Jerk seasoning, topped with crispy bacon lardons
Bourbon Chicken (Louisiana)
This dish gets its name from both its birthplace on Bourbon Street in New Orleans, as well as the bourbon whiskey generously used in the sauce, along with mushrooms, pearl onions and green peppers.
Mushroom Risotto (Italy)
A simple, classic dish; mushrooms cooked in wine with basil and garlic, over a creamy saffron & sage risotto.
Greek “Poutine” (Greece)
Oven-roasted Greek-style potatoes & eggplants with lemon, oregano and black pepper, served over a chopped Greek salad of tomatoes, cucumbers, olives and feta cheese, drizzled with olive oil.
Beef & Jackfruit Barbacoa (Mexico)
Traditional Mexican BBQ flavours: cumin, chilies, onions & garlic, along with a secret herb blend brought back from Mexico, slow-cooked overnight and served with soft, fresh corn tortillas, topped with chopped onions and a creamy habanero sauce.
This delightful dessert of coffee-soaked lady fingers, sweetened mascarpone cheese and whipped cream dusted with cocoa has become one of the best known Italian desserts worldwide, yet it only appeared in Italy in the 1960s. Doesn’t make it any less delicious though!
Cantuccini con Vin Santo (Italy)
Almond cookies dipped in sweet dessert wine: a Tuscan classic
Ruchika has cooked since she was little, in a family of great cooks, so her desire for cooking comes from her roots. And as she travels and explores the world, she adds those experiences to her cooking. You can follow along on Instagram @chikabh for cooking, and @destination.nomade for traveling.
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