10 Round-the-World Recipes to Feed Your Wanderlust

10 Round-the-World Recipes to Feed Your Wanderlust

Bring the wonderful flavors of the world into your kitchen for stay-home vacation vibes

Sorely missing the feeling of discovering new sights, cultures and traditions in a foreign country? You’re not alone. While world travel grinds to a halt, bring the taste of vacation into your home by whipping up some famous culinary delights from abroad.

1. Korean Pancake (Pajeon)

Brave the throngs at Seoul’s Myeongdong Street Food Alley, and you’ll be spoilt for choice in terms of the crunchy, soft, spicy or sweet snacks to choose from. You’ll definitely find hungry patrons digging into the well-loved Pajeon within a few steps, as there’s no better way to warm up a cold day by tearing up a steaming hot, freshly fried Korean pancake! The best part about making this at home is that you can have unlimited portions without queuing (and drooling over somebody else’s food while at it), and you can add extra shrimps for a super seafood extravaganza on your crispy pancake. 

2. Japanese Smelts Nanbanzuke

Japanese food carries so well all over the world for good reason – it’s delicate, subtle but yummy and often uses high-quality fresh ingredients in its making, which translates into beautiful flavors on your dinner plate. Hand rolls and sushi is easy to find, but how about some light and crispy Japanese Smelts Nanbanzuke that’s brimming with umami goodness? Adam takes you through the simple steps to recreating this unique dish while you ogle at the gorgeous snow-covered Hokkaido landscape behind.

3. Mafroukeh Festou (Lebanese Semolina Pistachio Truffle)

Settle on top of a soft cushion as you sit cross-legged on the floor to enjoy a traditional Ramadan feast in Lebanon. Pistachio-based sweets like Mafroukeh Festou (Lebanese Semolina Pistachio Truffle) are incredibly popular during the festive season, and they don’t require any baking. Blend the ingredients, fill the little balls with clotted cream and they are ready to be enjoyed!

4. Gingery Chicken Rice: Singapore

This simple but extremely craveable Chicken Rice dish is Singapore's pride and joy. And around the world? It's celebrated. BBC once said that this dish is worth a 15-hour flight. The late chef Anthony Bourdain described it as “a light and beautiful thing” and more recently, Gordon Ramsay commented that one cannot underestimate the simplicity of this dish. Well, chicken rice, ordered with either roasted or white chicken on a bed of fragrant ginger infused rice and highly piquant chilli and dark soy sauce (some say the sauces make or break the dish) - will remind you of the city's hot and noisy hawker centres that sell that and a lot more good food. Make a pot of it and check out all the city's great restaurants and trendiest eats, for your next dining out plan. 

5. May's Tom Yam Soup: Thailand

Missed out on the Bangkok shopping trip this year or the relaxing vacation to Koh Samui? Bring some Thai spice into your home with May's Tom Yam Soup to get over the pandemic blues. This incredible broth is choke-full of herby seafood goodness, which is the backbone of any good Tom Yam soup. You’ll never tire of this classic dish that is sweet, spicy, savory, bitter and sour all at once and pairing it with freshly steamed Jasmine white rice will transport you to the warm, cozy restaurants of Thailand instantly.

6. Mala Beef Noodles Soup

If there’s anything the region of Szechuan is most famous for, it must be their tongue-numbing Mala dishes. Pop into any modest street side restaurant or posh downtown establishment in Chengdu or Chongqing and you’ll notice that almost every single dish is a fiery hot red in color (except for the tongue-saving creamy peanut milk)! While this Mala Beef Noodles Soup will fit right into the menu of any Szechuan restaurant, you can tweak the spiciness level so you won’t be popping ice cubes or chugging milk within your first bite.

7. Flavorsome Corned Beef Tortang Talong: Philippines

This Flavorsome Corned Beef Tortang Talong may look beautifully complex, but it’s not that difficult and makes for a pretty breakfast or brunch item that will put a smile on your face first thing in the morning. Eggplants and eggs are the main star of this Filipino omelet, and this variation is stuffed with beef for that extra earth flavors and protein boost. What better way to start a jam-packed active day?

8. Hong Kong Style Egg Tarts

Fabulous golden Hong Kong Style Egg Tarts and snaking queues often go hand in hand in Hong Kong or Macau, but it’s way more rewarding to make your own at home and learn about what goes into creating a perfect egg tart. Hong Kong egg tarts are thinner and less heavy than their Portuguese cousins, and are great for home-bakers who don’t want an overly dense afternoon treat (that will surely lead to a mid-afternoon slump). Lots of tips and tricks are included in this recipe to guide you along, so there’s no reason to not roll up your sleeves and get rolling!

9. Fried Vietnamese Spring Rolls

Light, flavorful and often topped off with copious amounts of fish sauce and lime, Vietnamese cuisine doesn’t have that many deep-fried dishes, but who needs them when there’s already the ultra addictive Fried Vietnamese Spring Rolls?  Unlike many other deep-friend Asian snacks, these spring rolls are light and crispy on the outside, while bursting with juicy sweetness from the shrimps, carrots, chicken, spring onion and other herbs on the inside. Pair this appetizer with a steaming hot bowl of Pho and a strong cup of Vietnamese drip coffee and savor the best of Vietnam wherever you are.

10. Indonesian Cendol (Es Dawet)

Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia – all these countries have their own variation of Cendol and locals love cooling off any hot and sticky days with this cold dessert. This Indonesian Cendol (Es Dawet) recipe emulates the Javanese version of the sweet treat, which includes the classic Cendol jelly and a good dose of gula jawa syrup for sweetness. Try out all the regional versions of Cendol across multiple weekends and learn about the minute differences in food and tradition across Indonesia (and Asia) without having to step out of the house!

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