Bucket list for foodies: 20 best things to eat around the world

Welcome to a culinary journey around the world! Food is not just about nourishment, but it also has the power to transport us to different cultures and countries. Each dish tells a story and reflects the history, geography, and traditions of its origin. From spicy curries in India to delicate sushi in Japan, every corner of the world has its unique flavours and techniques that are waiting to be explored.

As foodies, we are always in search of new culinary experiences, and what better way to broaden our horizons than to embark on a journey through some of the most exciting cuisines on the planet.

So, fasten your seatbelts and get ready to indulge in a world of tastes, smells, and textures that will tantalise your taste buds and leave you craving for more. Here are 20 of the must-try foods from around the world that will take you on a culinary adventure of a lifetime.

1. Peking duck from a traditional Chinese restaurant

bucketlist - peking duck

Peking duck is a dish that originated in Beijing, China, over 600 years ago during the Ming dynasty. It was originally reserved for the imperial court, and the dish became popular during the Qing dynasty. Today, it is a well-known and widely enjoyed dish both in China and around the world.

2. Pho from Vietnam

bucketlist - bowl of pho

Pho is a Vietnamese soup that originated in the early 20th century in northern Vietnam. It is believed to have been created as a variation of French onion soup using Vietnamese ingredients, such as rice noodles, herbs, and spices. Pho gained popularity throughout Vietnam and eventually became a staple dish in Vietnamese cuisine.

3. Freshly caught and grilled fish from Greece

Freshly caught and grilled fish is a staple of Greek cuisine. It is often served with lemon and olive oil, and sometimes accompanied by herbs and vegetables. Fish such as sea bream, sea bass, and octopus are commonly found on menus at seaside tavernas throughout Greece. Enjoying grilled fish with friends and family is a popular summer pastime in Greece.

4. Escargot in garlic butter from France

This is a classic French dish that features snails cooked in a buttery garlic sauce. The snails are usually removed from their shells, cooked, and then returned to the shells with the garlic butter sauce. This dish is often served as an appetiser and is a popular delicacy in French cuisine.

5. Belgian waffles with chocolate sauce from Belgium

foodie - waffles

Belgian waffles, also known as Brussels waffles, are a beloved treat in Belgium. They are often enjoyed as a snack or dessert, and can be found in cafes, street food vendors, and restaurants throughout the country. Belgian waffles are typically light and crispy, and are often served with toppings such as whipped cream, fruit, and chocolate.

6. Borscht from Russia

Borscht is a traditional soup that originated in Eastern Europe, specifically in Ukraine. It is made with beets as the primary ingredient, along with other vegetables such as cabbage, carrots, and potatoes. Borscht can be served hot or cold, and is often garnished with sour cream and fresh dill. It is a popular dish in many countries, including Russia, Poland, and Lithuania.

7. Empanadas from Argentina

Empanadas are a traditional pastry from Argentina that is usually filled with meat, vegetables, or cheese. The pastry can be baked or fried, and the filling can vary from region to region. Empanadas are a popular street food in Argentina and are often served as an appetiser or snack.

8. Croissants from France

foodie - croissants

Croissants are a quintessential French pastry that are known for their flaky, buttery texture and crescent shape. They were originally created in Vienna, Austria, but gained popularity in France in the 19th century. Today, croissants can be found in bakeries and cafes throughout the world, but are still most closely associated with French cuisine.

La Levain: Artisanal bakery with pistachio burnt cheese croissants by ex-Keong Saik Bakery head baker

9. Beef Wellington from England

Beef Wellington is a classic English dish that features a beef filet wrapped in puff pastry with a layer of pâté and a mushroom mixture. It is typically baked until the pastry is golden and crispy. Beef Wellington is often served at special occasions and is a popular dish in British cuisine.

10. Pad Thai from a street vendor in Thailand

bucketlist - pad thai
Credit – Sawadee Thai Cuisine

Pad Thai is a popular Thai dish that is made with stir-fried rice noodles, eggs, vegetables, and a sauce that includes tamarind paste, fish sauce, and palm sugar. It is often garnished with crushed peanuts and fresh lime. Pad Thai is a staple in Thai cuisine and can be found in restaurants worldwide.

11. Paella from Valencia, Spain

foodie - paella

Paella is a rice dish that originated in the Valencia region of Spain. It is traditionally made with saffron-infused rice, vegetables, and a variety of seafood, meats, or beans. Paella is cooked in a large, shallow pan called a paellera and is often served with a side of aioli. It is a popular dish in Spanish cuisine.

12. Texas-style barbecue brisket from the United States

foodie - brisket

Texas-style barbecue brisket is a dish that originated in the southern United States. It involves smoking a beef brisket for hours over wood, typically oak, until it is tender and flavourful. The brisket is then sliced and served with barbecue sauce, pickles, and white bread. Texas-style barbecue brisket is a staple in American cuisine.

13. Tacos al pastor from Mexico

Tacos al pastor is a popular Mexican dish that features spit-roasted pork that has been marinated in a combination of spices, including achiote, chilli pepper, and pineapple. The pork is typically served on small tortillas with onions, cilantro, and salsa. Tacos al pastor is a staple in Mexican cuisine and can be found in taquerias throughout the country.

14. Shakshouka from Israel

foodie - shakshuka

Shakshouka is a popular Israeli dish that features eggs cooked in a spicy tomato-based sauce with onions and peppers. It is often served with bread for dipping in the flavourful sauce. Shakshouka is a staple of Middle Eastern cuisine and is enjoyed throughout Israel and beyond.

15. Authentic Neapolitan pizza from Italy

Neapolitan pizza is a traditional style of pizza that originated in Naples, Italy. It features a soft and chewy crust, made with simple ingredients such as flour, water, yeast, and salt. The pizza is typically topped with fresh San Marzano tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, and fresh basil. Neapolitan pizza is a staple in Italian cuisine and has gained worldwide popularity.

16. Chicken tikka masala from India

Chicken tikka masala is a popular Indian dish that features marinated and grilled chicken that is simmered in a spiced tomato-based sauce. The sauce typically includes ingredients such as cumin, coriander, ginger, garlic, and cream. Chicken tikka masala is a staple in Indian cuisine and is enjoyed worldwide.

17. Ramen from Japan

bucketlist - ramen

Ramen is a Japanese dish that features thin wheat noodles in a flavorful broth, typically made with miso, soy sauce, or pork bones. The broth is often topped with sliced pork, boiled egg, bamboo shoots, and green onions. Ramen is a staple in Japanese cuisine and is enjoyed worldwide.

18. Lobster roll from Maine, United States

bucketlist -- lobster roll

The lobster roll is a traditional dish that originated in the state of Maine, United States. It features a toasted split-top bun filled with chilled lobster meat, mayonnaise, and a sprinkle of paprika. The lobster roll is a staple of New England cuisine and can be found in restaurants and food trucks throughout the region.

19. Moussaka from Greece

Moussaka is a traditional Greek dish that features layers of eggplant, ground meat (usually beef or lamb), and tomato sauce, topped with a creamy bechamel sauce. It is typically baked in the oven until the top is golden and crispy. Moussaka is a staple in Greek cuisine and is often served as a main dish.

20. Dim sum from Hong Kong

bucketlist - dim sum

Dim sum is a traditional Chinese meal that features small bite-sized portions of food served in steamer baskets or on small plates. It originated in Hong Kong and is typically served during breakfast or brunch. Dim sum dishes can include steamed buns, dumplings, rice noodle rolls, and other savoury and sweet snacks. It is a popular cuisine enjoyed worldwide.

What’s your favourite dish from around the world? Share with us!

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