Most travellers would agree that the best part of travelling is trying the new array of food available that you can’t get at home. I love sinking my chompers in a new dish, and I’ll use any excuse to travel and eat! I’ll even have a go at the more weird foods that are out there.
Indonesia has a lot of food that sounds strange, but tastes great; for example, tea with egg and fish cooked in durian and chili sauce. I wasn’t game to try balut in the Philippines, which is a partially formed duck foetus dipped in vinegar that would literally be a bit hard to swallow!
I have a real attraction to all things different to what I’m used to. Just because something is different, doesn’t mean that it’s bad! I can’t exactly remember the first weird dish I tried and where, but I’m always willing to try something at least once, because I find that for most of the time, it’s worth it. Regardless, you’ll always have a great story to tell after the experience!
I’ll try anything new as long as it doesn’t leave me sitting on the toilet for a week!
Here are some examples:
Mopani Worms – South Africa
When I first laid eyes on the plate of Mopani worms that I ordered, I was fairly sure I’d be eating something a bit tastier than what Bear Grylls ingests on Man vs Wild. The worms themselves are fairly bland so adding a sauce of some sort (e.g. tomato) does help add more dimension to the flavor. When I started chewing on them, I noticed that Mopani worms do have a rubbery texture that is an acquired taste, but it’s not the worst thing I’ve ever placed in my mouth! Worth trying at least once.
Rujak Cingur – Cow’s Nose in Satay Sauce
Think meaty and crunchy at the same time, smothered in a spicy peanut sauce, and you’ll get the picture!
Assorted Spam Dishes – Manila, Philippines
This was probably the funniest restaurant I’ve ever come across in my life. It feels like you’re in the Monty Python Sketch, but have a go at spam with spaghetti, or spam with anything else really!
Currywurst, Berlin, Germany
Sounds terrible – deep fried bratwurst in a bun covered by salsa and curry powder, but it tastes awesome! A great dish to have with a beer. This is my second favorite dish to eat after a big night out, after the kebab!
Tea and Coffee mixed together – Singapore
If you go to the Tiong Bahru area, try the Yin and Yang drink – which means it’s a half/half mix of tea and coffee in the same cup! What happens to the taste buds on your tongue, is that you first receive a tea hit, which is followed by a hit of coffee just afterwards. While I had never tasted something like this before, it was actually pretty good.
Bunny Chow – South Africa
An ingenious idea, stuff your curry inside a quarter or half loaf of bread. I’ve tried the half loaf option – and it almost sent me into hibernation!
There you go! The next time you go travelling overseas, avoid that multinational food chain like the plague and try something different!
About the author: Anthony Bianco is a travel blogger based in Brisbane, Australia, who began TheTravelTart.com in January 2009 and writes about budget, luxury, offbeat, and adventure travel. Follow Anthony’s adventures through his website and on social.