Exploring other countries and cultures around the world is a multisensory experience. Your memories are a collection of the things that you see, smell, touch, taste and hear along the journey.
For many of us, foreign travel is not currently an option as we cope with the effects of a global pandemic. But you can still take a trip to an exotic land by way of your tastebuds. Here’s 4 foods from around the world to satisfy at least one of your senses until you can start trotting the globe again.
Maafé (West African Peanut Stew)
Peanuts are a staple in West African cuisine and are a major crop in Senegal. This stew is popular throughout the region, and many areas put their own twists on it. Here’s a version made with meat, but vegetarian recipes are also available.
This sauce is a traditional part of Mexican cultural foodways, and there are more than a hundred variations that differ from region to region across the country. Though some molés are simple, many are complex and require more than 30 ingredients and days of cooking. But the complexity adds a beautiful depth of flavor to the sauce. Try these versions from traditional molé poblano, to smoky peanut molé, and another version of molé encacahuatado.
A bright, fresh and colorful salad dish from Indonesia, gado gado is traditionally prepared with plant-based ingredients and is spicy yet refreshing. The best part is that it is perfectly adaptable so you can use whatever fresh produce you have on hand. The peanut sauce will tie it all together. Try this version for a traditional take on the dish, or this one for a simple and straightforward approach.
A savory snack from India, chaat is served as an appetizer and at roadside stands, food carts and stalls throughout the South Asian region. There are multiple versions of this popular snack, but all include fresh produce and various spices. Here’s a version using boiled peanuts, and another one using salted, roasted peanuts.