3 Best Ways To Experience Cambodian Food
3 Best Ways To Experience Cambodian Food
3 Best Ways To Experience Cambodian Food April 13, 2019 By Santel Phin
One great way to explore a country is to try local food.
When you are a traveler from overseas, you may have never tried some of the more exotic dishes in Asia, and all you know might be spring rolls and Thai curry.
Cambodian cuisine isn’t well known outside the country but has to offer a lot. It is best described as a mix of Indian, Thai and Vietnamese cuisine, but has it authentic flavors as well.
There are three main ways: go to a local restaurant, grab some street food or dine with the locals .
So, what’s the best way to explore Khmer food? 1. Local restaurants
There are a lot of local restaurants – some cater only local people and some are for tourists as well.
The authentic Khmer food is usually available in local restaurants. But there is a catch: most are specialized in on or a few dishes.
You will getter best noodle soup (Kuyteav) in a traditional restaurant with plastic chairs and steel tables. Those noodles are served with or without soup, and with rice (white) or egg (yellow) noodles.
You can select beef, pork or chicken. Vegetarian options are rare, but you can just ask to leave the meat out (although the soup base is still beef stock). Another must-try is Nam Ban Chock Samlor Trey: white noodles in a mild coconut curry with herbs an fish.
While most noodle soup restaurants are open early and a popular breakfast place, the BBQ restaurants open in the evening. Some are all you can eat, some are specialized on pork or beef. Don’t expect a full steak on your plate, it’s common that the meat is cut into pieces (hence the lack of knives on a table).
Of course there also restaurants offering a broader range of Khmer food. It is common to share the food, so when you sit on a table with friends, dishes will come as they are made and then shared. Classic dishes to try are Amok with fish or chicken and beef Lok Lak.
Ko Kor is a soup with roasted rice powder (and can be made without any meat), or a bamboo shoot coconut soup with locals herbs and leaves.
Rice is often served by the waitress, who appears with a big bowl and then shovels rice on your plate. 2. Street food
While countless bloggers praise street food as authentic, in particular in Thailand, it is only half of the truth. Street food in Asia is most of all cheap food. It’s made for workers, who just want to grab a bite.
There is a lot of rice and not much on top, ingredients are cheap as well and not the most healthy one. Don’t expect any organic food here. Some markets offer street food as well, usually for those who work there or the customers.
It’s an interesting experience to have seat there, order something and then watch what’s going on around you. Best dishes are fried fish and chicken, and if you dare, grilled rats. 3. Eat with locals
The best way to experience local food in Cambodia is with local people. As a traveler, it might be a bit difficult to get in touch with the family next door let alone get invited. But there are solutions.
One is a homestay, where you basically live with a family, often in their house in a separate room. If you don’t want to spend so much time, try Dine With The Locals .
It’s a platform where you can select from hosts all over Cambodia and then join them for lunch or dinner. Booking is made online and easy to do. Most hosts are in Siem Reap , Battambang, Phnom Penh , and Banteay Meanchey.
The project was started to give local families additional income: They prepare a set menu (available on the website) for you and then share the meal.
All hosts and locations are different: from a wooden house in the forest to an organic farm and an artists apartment in Phnom Penh. Since the food is made just for you, it’s fresh and made as they cook it for generations.
It can’t get more authentic when it comes to a real food experience in Cambodia. Share this:
Sneak Preview: COOK’s May Class Schedule
It’s that time again. COOK is about to release their May class schedule and we have a sneak peek for you. So whether you’re looking for an early look at the new restaurant from Peter Woolsey, a spring vegetable dinner, or to learn about French cheeses, you’ve come to the right place.
Tickets go on sale Tuesday, April 9th at noon, so take a look and make your plans. COOK’s May Schedule
May 2: Restaurant Sneak Peek: Gabi with Peter Woolsey and Kenny Bush
May 3: Fowl Play: A Stockyard Duck Dinner with Will Lindsay and Mike Metzger
May 4: 12PM Vegetarian Indian Brunch with Rupen Rao of Rupen’s
May 5: 12PM Vegan Cinco De Mayo with Christina Martin of Cooking to Nourish
May 7: Languedoc Wine Dinner with Joncarl Lachman of Noord and Winkel and Ashley Costanzo of Vintage Imports
May 8: Wine + Swine: Rioja with Mitch Skwer of Vintage Imports and Nick Macri of La Divisa Meats
May 9: Mother’s Day Soul Food Dinner with Malik Ali of South and His Mom Adrianne Ali
May 11: 1PM Mother’s Day Vegetarian Empanada Making with Jezabel Careaga
May 15: Local Producer Dinner with Ryan Bloome of Terrain and Tim Mountz of Happy Cat Farm
May 17: Cookbook Author Event: Cuba Cooks: Recipe & Secrets From Cuban Paladares And Their Chefs with Guillermo Pernot
May 18: 3PM Cheese-101: The French Classics with Kealan O’Donnel of Whole Foods
May 19: 12PM Bites of Spring with Scott Megill
May 21: Modern North Indian Cuisine with Sanjoy Banik and Shafi Gaffar of Makhani
May 22: An Evening with Steve Ackner of Ocean Prime
May 23: 6PM Pairing Salts Happy Hour with Atsuko Boyd and Chris Allen
May 24: 12PM The Middle Eastern Spice Market with Samar Lazzari of Stoa Takeaway
May 28: Pasta Makes Perfect with Michael Vincent Ferreri of Res Ipsa
May 29: Southern Comfort with Chad Rosenthal of The Lucky Well
May 30: Spring Vegetable Soiree with Matt Gansert and Khoran Horn
Mambo International Kitchen Invites You to Savor Their World on Your Table
Mambo International Kitchen Invites You to Savor Their World on Your Table
In September 2018, the owners of Mambo International Kitchen made their dream a reality, by opening a family friendly restaurant serving high quality and cost effective gourmet food. Known for its innovative menu, Mambo International Kitchen successfully fuses classic Filipino dishes with elements of international cuisine from all over the world.
“The menu is a combination of home-style comfort food with creative and fun dishes.” Starters include empanadas, calamari, shrimp ceviche, various flavors of chicken wings (frequent flyers), and Philippine Pork Sisig. The Global Rice bowls are available in traditional Filipino Pork Adobo, Korean, Indian or Hong Kong variety. The All American Section includes: Mambo’s BBQ TriTip, Donna’s Crab Cakes, along with Alessandra’s Crispy Fish and Sebastian’s Grilled Cheese.
Mambo’s Tacos are elevated to a new level of culinary delight. Their flavors vary from Filipino, Korean, Indian, English Vegan, Vietnamese and my personal favorite, Mambo’s Shrimp.
No meal is complete without the sides. Mambo breaks from tradition by serving falafel, garlic noodles, russet, sweet potato, garlic and adobo fries. Yes please.
Now that you’ve eaten your way through an appetizer and entree, it’s time for dessert. Four words: Banana Nutella Egg Roll. Picture this, battered bananas fried to perfection and drizzled with Nutella underneath a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Tiramisu and molten lava cake are also favorites. As for me, I died and went to Heaven after eating Mambo’s Ube S’mores. This isn’t your typical sandwich of graham crackers, chocolate and marshmallow. Mambo adds a unique Filipino flair by substituting chocolate for ube (Filipino purple yam). All I can say is WOW. I’m salivating just thinking about it.
Mambo International Kitchen is a one of a kind dining experience. The owners want to share their passion for good food with every person who enters their establishment through delicious and unique dishes, served by a friendly staff.
One day in Bruges Itinerary – What to do in Bruges in one day
Bruges One Day Itinerary – Top Things to see in Bruges in one day One day in Bruges Itinerary – What to do in Bruges in one day?
Did you know that Bruges is called Brugge? Bruges is the French name for the city and Brugge is the Dutch name. The medieval city of Bruges rose to prominence in the 14 th and 15 th centuries due to the expansive canal system. In the later centuries, it lost its sheen and was almost neglected. Which was in a way good, as it preserved much of the city’s charm from invasions and modern world wars. Bruges Itinerary Train station – Arriving from Brussels to Bruges We took an early train from Brussels and arrived in Bruges, when the city was still waking up to waffles. From the train station in Bruges, the central square is a short distance away. We reached Bruges at around 08:00 am and the market square was closed. So we explored some of the open monuments and sites that were open 24/7 and captured some of the beautiful spots in Bruges minus the crowds.
Trains are available from most stations in Brussels and connects Bruges through their SNCB rail network. We departed from Brussels Midi and arrived in Bruges in an hour. Nearest Airport to Bruges is Brussels Zaventem Airport, and it takes 1.50 hours to reach Bruges from Brussels Airport . Take a day tour to Bruges from Brussels. Book your tour here. The Lake of Love – Enjoy a stroll at Lake Minnewaterpark As you walk from the train station, you will find many green spaces and beautiful medieval sculptures. Lake Minnewaterpark or the ‘lake of love’ is a beautiful and tranquil green space in Bruges. Legend has it that there was man named Stromberg, who was in love with Minna. As with most love stories, there was a villain, Minna’s father who disapproved of their love. Minna escaped to the forest and the lake. The tragedy of the story is that the girl died here, in the arms of her lover. Since then the charming lake has been a magnet for lovers who are bonded in eternity.
A lover’s bridge is located at the central part of the park, as a testimony to undying love. You will also find beautiful swans at the lake, making a splash in the water. Swans symbolizes grace, love, devotion and partnerships. Spend an hour or so here and then continue to the heart of the city of Bruges. Swans in Bruges Canal Explore the medieval Saint John’s Hospital – Sint-Janshospitaal
The Saint John Hospital is a 800 year of medieval hospital. The interiors are filled with art collection, archives, medical items and instruments from by gone days. Visitors are allowed access to explore the medieval wards, as well as the chapel.
The hospital is open Tuesday to Sunday, from 09:30 am to 5:00 pm. Adult tickets are for 12 euros (2019) Markt Square – Experience the medieval Market Square The Markt Square is the iconic landmark of Bruges. This is the fairy tale place that you see in picture perfect postcards and yes, they are for REAL. The market place has been in operation since 958 AD. The gingerbread houses, in beautiful Flemish architecture and the gold, green decorations are truly mesmerizing – I just wanted to bring them home with me to Canada 🙂 Markt Square Bruges We so recommend arriving at the Market Square early. You will see the market square setting up in the morning, as vendors pour in with local goods and delicacies. The market square is lined with restaurants and they are empty, making way for perfect photography shots, in the morning. By 10:00 am, when the markets were set up, we tried some roasted chicken at one of the food stalls. Let me TELL you, there were s delicious that we couldn’t let it go. All the food and flowers sold here are sourced locally and the market have been operating for centuries. So definitely enjoy a piece of vintage and medieval history in the market square. Bruges Markt Square – Food Market
Salil and I had so much fun exploring the market square, sipping on some warm cappuccino and walking through the market square as it was being set up. We were also lucky to have arrived here on a Wednesday when local food and flower stalls and vendors were in.
At the centre of the square, you will find stature of Jan Breydel and Pieter de Coninck. They were two freedom fighters who fought against the French at the beginning of the 14th century. Statues at the Markt Square
We enjoyed some soup and sat by the statues to admire the gingerbread houses. Oh so pretty! For your one day in Bruges Itinerary, this is MUST visit spot. In and around the Markt, there are other popular sightseeing attractions as well, that you shouldn’t miss. The Markt is surrounded by two MOST important sights in Bruges – the Belfry tower and the Historium. Be mesmerized – Belfry Tower or the Belfort van Brugge (in Dutch) Standing tall at the market square is the Belfry tower. The Belfry of Bruges (or Belfort van Brugge) is an iconic medieval bell tower in the city. It is 83 metres tall and has a long legacy of 800 years. The belfries are structures that enclose bells for ringing as part of the tower of a civic (city) hall. The tower of Belfry was important in the middle ages as it almost served as a guardian to alert residents of fire or other calamities. It forms a part of a 13th century complex of buildings. The Belfry tower has been recognized as UNESCO World Heritage sites since 1999. The Belfry is open everyday from 09:30 am to 6:00 pm. Adult tickets are for 12 euros (2019). Belfry or Belfort Tower at the Markt Square You can climb up the Belfry Tower for panoramic views of the city of Bruges. It only has 366 steps. On the way to the top, you can visit a museum to learn about city archives from the Middle Ages. There are about 47 bells at the carillon. You will learn more about the carillon and the ‘Triumphant Bell’ when you reach the top level. It is amazing to see the bell and the clockwork so closely.
During summers, you might experience a long wait time as the tower can only hold up to 70 people at a time. So we recommend opting for a tower tour in the evening (before close). Historium – Learn history with multi-media Another sightseeing stop located by the Markt is the Historium. It is a fun and an interactive way to learn about Bruges history. I wish I had this in school, wouldn’t that be cool? Although most of the stories highlighted here are fictional, mixed with facts; it is surely an entertaining way to learn more of the medieval city. Videos refer to the 15th century period in Bruges.
The Historium is open from 10:00 am to 06:00 pm everyday. You can buy tickets online or at least 2 hours before closing on site.
There are 3 types of access tickets to choose from. You can either visit (and explore/watch/learn) the medieval Bruges discovery tour for 14 euros (adults), or add a drink at the end of the experience for 19.50 euros. The virtual reality experience of Bruges, called the time traveler , is amazing and you should include that if you are heading to the Historium and an all inclusive ticket for that, will be $17.50 euros (no drink/food). Take a Guided Rickshaw Tour Right outside the Historium and in and around the Markt Square, you will find private guided tours to explore the city. They are in a tuk tuk or a East Indian Rickshaw style. The rickshaw tour for two is a sightseeing tour for 1-2 hours, where you will be getting a glimpse of all the tourist highlights of Bruges, including access to hidden areas, without the long walk or drive. The tour starts and ends at the Historium. Book a guided tour in a Rickshaw here Waffle on a Stick After morning exploration, its time for some quick snack. We decided to go for waffles with a twist. Waffle on a stick is a delicious take on Belgian waffles. And it is SWEEET! Waffle on a Stick The confectionery store is located on Breidelstraat 11, 8000 Brugge, called Go.fre Brugge. Definitely give it a try. It is located in a lane pretty close to our next sightseeing stop. The Burg Square
Another medieval square located at the city center Bruges is the Burg Square. The Burg square dates to 9th century. It is believed that this is one of the earliest inhabited places in Bruges, dating back to second or third centuries.
Inside and in and around the Burg Square, you will find a few sightseeing gems that are worth a visit. The Bruges City Hall (The Stadhuis), an Old Civil Registry (1537 which was a Court House) and the Basilica of the Holy Blood. The Burg Square The Basilica of the Holy Blood – Of Jesus
The Basilica of the Holy Blood is the most interesting of all structures here at the Burg Square. It is a Roman Catholic minor church in Belgium. The church is adorned in glided statues. It is easy to not spot this chapel, behind a gorgeous staircase. The church is a dual basilica with a Gothic upper church and Romanesque lower level .
The Basilica of the Holy Blood is well-known for a vial (or phial), containing a small piece of cloth which is said to be stained with drops of blood of Jesus. The vial is located in the located in the upper level. In order to see the display, you will have to be at the basilica at certain times. Hours are 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m., 2:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Go and attend the mass and see the vial for your self! Bruges Old City Hall The most impressive building on the Burg is the Town Hall. This beautiful Gothic Bruges Old City Hall was built in 1376, making it is one of the oldest in the Low Countries/entire Netherlands. Perfect one day in Bruges Itinerary
The City Hall is adorned with statues. They were destroyed during the French Revolution and were later re-built. The interiors have timber ceilings and painted murals. The council chambers from the original site were replaced by one “Gothic” hall. The city of Bruges was governed from this administrative building for more than 600 years. You will find many historical details and information here at the Bruges City Hall. Bruges City Hours are from 09:30 to 5:00 pm everyday. Ticket prices 4+ euros. After exploring the Burg Fortress, time for quick lunch. There are restaurants located near the Burg Square as well. Or if you still have some more energy for a quick stroll, then head to the narrow lane linking the Burg Square with the old fish market – Vismarkt to the canals. Sea food restaurant Bruges
Vismarkt is a fishmarket, which is located in the covered arcade, set up for the purpose of selling fish and sea food. This also means if you are a sea food lover, head to De Gouden Krones Brugge for lunch or dinner. This restaurant is also a good Instagram Spot! Add Belgian Frites to your Bruges Itinerary You will have to have Belgian Frites (Loaded Poutine). Although we were still FULL, from all the food in the morning, we still decided to try out some loaded Belgian frites by the canal side. Bruges is usually very humid, but we were there in September and the weather was pleasant. Take a Canal Tour Canal Tour Bruges Although it might sound very clichéd, but a canal boat tour is a MUST do activity in Bruges. The waterways led to the prosperity of Bruges in medieval times and taking a ride over the river is sort of customary and essential. The canal tour lasts an hour and cost 14 euros for two. We did the tour in the afternoon and it was co-shared by 10-12 other people. It was not crowded, but for 14 euros, there is no privacy or romance. Just romance with the medieval sights of Bruges, you know what I mean When you are in Bruges for a day, taking the canal tour will also allow you to experience more of what the city has to offer. In the entire loop of the tour, you will view beautiful medieval buildings and most of the iconic sights of Bruges. The Skyscraper aka the Bruges Whale
While you are enjoying your canal ride, you will see a giant blue dolphin protruding from the water towards the sky (arching Jan Van Eyck Square at the city’s center). The Skyscraper is the result of 5 tonnes of waste from the oceans, collected over 4 months to shape the Bruges Whale. Bruges SkyScraper from the canal tour
The height of the Skyscraper is that of a 4 storied building. Can you imagine the waste that’s in it? Insane Learn about beer in a Local Brewery Tour in your Bruges Itinerary Bruges is known for its beer and there a few breweries in town that are worth a visit. Most tour guide books refer to the De Halve Maan (Half Moon) brewery and their Brugse Zot drink, we thought to doing things a little differently.
We opted for the Bourgogne des Flandres Brewery for tour and really enjoyed it. Although Bourgogne des Flanders is not as popular as De Halve Maan brewery in Bruges, we have 3 reasons, why this brewery should be visited instead. For 10 euros, you get the guided tour of the brewery as well as a FREE pint of famous Bourgogne des Flandres beer – red-brown beer, with a creamy finish You can try 6 different varieties of beer YAY Its location: Located at a quaint street, relaxed environment inside the bar. BONUS: You can sit and sip by the canal = awesome views Bourgogne des Flandres Bourgogne des Flandres dates back to a legacy of beer making since the 1800s. The brewery disappeared in 1930’s only to be re-discovered again.
The tour is an self guided audio tour, and at the end of the guide, a beer consultant talks to you and shows you how raw beer looks and tastes like (I didnt quite like the raw beer taste, but Salil did) You can either choose to enjoy the evening by the canal and beer here (add a cheese and meat platter to go). Or you can head back to the market square to enjoy the night. Bourgogne des Flandres by the Canal When we walked back to the Markt, we saw that all the food stalls were gone (for the day). I wonder how much work and time they have put in each day to keep the market traditions alive, really impressed. Once the stalls are gone, the stage is clear for some live music. You will also see people enjoying a stroll or eating, good opportunity to relax and slow down for the night. For dinner, head to one of the restaurants by the Markt for some comfort food and another round of Belgian beer, before calling it a day. Romantic or Cozy Dinner in the river city of Bruges
Here are some dinner options in Bruges. Food in Bruges in restaurants is not very cheap, but for the taste, ambiance and heritage, it is worth it for a night Pro Deo Bistro – One of the best places to try traditional Belgian stew – stoofvlees (traditional stew) Belgian Pigeon House – Very upscale restaurant, perfect for cocktails and romantic dining The Olive Tree Brugge – Located very close to the Markt, the Olive Tree Brugge offers fresh and artificial free Greek/Mediterranean food. Sans Cravate – San Cravate is a modern restaurant by a Michelin Chef, at a reasonable price Den Gouden Harynk – This restaurant serves French and Belgian cuisine in a very upscale ambiance. Wine at this restaurant is good. If fine dining is not for you and you wish eat something quick (we know you had a long day), then we have some options for you as well Chez Albert – For waffles, sandwiches, deli Brazi’s Café – Fast food restaurant with vegetarian food options Bocca – Budget Italian Restaurant House of Waffles – Fast food place for coffee, waffles, sandwich, wraps House of Waffles in Bruges 2 days in Bruges Itinerary
If you happen to stay in Bruges and want to explore more of the city, here are some options for you Bruges Ommeland
Bruges Ommeland – Bruges Ommeland is an adjacent region to the city of Bruges. Many bike tours are offered from Bruges, where you can explore sightseeing stops like the Loppem Castle or the Castle Wijnendale. Visiting a Museum
Normally we would place a museum or a historical site as a must visit, but what do you choose from when the entire town is laced with medieval and Gothic learnings? Hard to choose. So here are some museums worth visiting on your second day in Bruges. Gruuthusemuseum – The Gruuthusemuseum is a museum of applied arts, housed in medieval Gruuthuse (the house of Louis de Gruuthuse) The display collection ranges from the 15th- 19th century, with insights to the life to a rich family living in Bruges in those times. There are art exhibitions held here as well. Groeningemuseum – The Groeningemuseum is a municipal museum, with displays Flemish and Belgian paintings from the 18th and the 19th century (from Jan van Eyck to Marcel Broodthaers). Frietmuseum – The one and only museum of Fries in the whole world. Choco Story – The Chocolate Museum – Visit this museum to learn about chocolate history and how it was brought to Belgium. Taking a Day trip from Bruges
Day trips are possible from Bruges to Amsterdam and Great War Flounders Field. Guided tour to Amsterdam lasts 12 hours, so it will take your full day appointment. Book your day tour to Amsterdam here Great War fields of Flounders in Ypres is another day trip option from Bruges. Book your day tour to Flounders here . You can also take a day trip to Ghent in Belgium.
Pro Tip : If you are traveling from Brussels, a trip to Bruges and Ghent is possible in the same day. Book your day tour here Travel Tips for Bruges One Day Itinerary
Here are some of the essential travel tips for Bruges Itinerary. Travel Visa/Travel Documents Bruges is located in Belgium. Belgium belongs to the Schengen Zone. If you have a non-visa exempt passport for Schengen countries, you will require a visa to travel. The most important thng to keep in mind here is that is not a visa on arrival, but the same visa that you take for France or Netherlands applies here (Schengen Agreement) Learn about the Schengen Visa process here .
If you posses an European Union passport, you are visa exempt.
From 2021 onwards, countries like USA and Canada will have to apply for travel authorization (ETIAS) online prior to arriving in Bruges. It can be applied online and received via email within 24 -48 hours, before travel. Where to stay in Bruges? Where to stay in Bruges? Looking to extending your stay in Bruges? Here are some hotel options for you. Hotel NH Bruges – Of NH Hotel chains, this is a 4 star accommodation, located very close to most of the sightseeing spots in Bruges. Offers free breakfast. Check out the hotel and book your stay Hotel De Orangerie – This stunning hotel overlooks the canal in Bruges. It is a luxury hotel with a grand setting. The hotel building dates back to a 15th century covenant. Check out the hotel reviews and book your stay Hotel Novotel Centrum – Located close to the city centre, this 3 star hotel in Bruges is a budget option with a convenient address. Check out the hotel reviews and book your stay
We recommend using HotelsCombined.com to find accommodation. It is our favorite hotels website for quickly comparing the prices of multiple hotel booking sites at once. Best Time to visit Bruges Belgium
Best time to visit Bruges is during late spring or summer months. The weather is warm and nice, less damp or rain. You will also see tons of greenery around as well.
We visited Bruges in September which is considered a shoulder season (off season). The weather was mild, with some overcasts during the day, but it didn’t rain the day we were in Bruges. Most tourist areas were not crowded. Bruges in Shoulder Season Top things to do in Winter Time in Bruges During winter and Christmas time, Bruges is a real treat. There are Christmas markets set up at the Markt Square. There are seasonal fix/events that you can partake and select Belgian Chocolates and holiday decorations to take it back home.
Festivals such as the Ice Sculpture and Christmas Lightning all happen in grandeur here in Bruges. Learn more about winter guide in Bruges here . What to eat in Bruges Belgian? Belgium is popular for so many foods and Bruges is no exception. We found that experiencing food by the canal, at the market square or at a brewery adds a whole new meaning in Bruges and definitely makes for great memories. Definitely try food at the market square. Your options range from meat to wine and cheese, fruits, chocolates, soup, waffles and crepes, Belgian frites and more Belgian Beer – You can try it at a brewery or bar/restaurant. Try Belgian beer at this popular restaurant – 2be Waffles of all kinds – On a stick, Belgian waffles (squared and Liege Waffles) Hot Chocolate – Try Hot Chocolate at House of Waffles. You will be given a cup/glass of hot milk and a chocolate on a stick. Stir the chocolate into the hot milk and viola – HOT CHOCOLATE is ready for you. Markt Square Souvenirs to buy in Bruges
Don’t forget to pack these goodies from Bruges Belgian Chocolates Lace work for home decorations Buy gingerbread shaped Bruges magnets and key-chains Safety in Bruges We found Bruges to be very safe and welcoming. At the early morning hours, you will not find a lot of people on the streets, but it is safe to walk and admire the buildings and stores. The market square gets busy during the day, so watch out for your wallets and don’t leave anything out in the open. We personally have not experienced any theft or tourist ‘troubles’ in Bruges, so we can say it was safe. But follow general safety and precautionary measures at crowded locations like the canal tour or the market square. Evenings are quiet, but safe to take a stroll enjoy.
Bruges have remained a popular destination for solo backpackers and couples for years. The cobblestone lanes, the medieval vibes and my favorite real-life gingerbread houses, didn’t disappoint us. It is definitely a MUST visit when you are in Belgium.
Additional Belgium Resources Day trip ideas from Brussels to other cities and countries
Last Update: April 12 2019
Disclaimer : This post contains affiliate links. If you click one of them, I may receive a small commission (for which I am very grateful for) at no extra cost to you. Bruges One Day Itinerary – Top Things to see in Bruges in one day
The complete guide to eating out in Clifton – home to some of the city’s best restaurants
Steak at the Nettle & Rye Get the biggest Daily
There’s a very good reason Clifton is one of the most popular areas of Bristol when it comes to eating out.
It might not be able to boast the very best of the city ( BS6 probably holds that honour ) but it very much holds its own in terms of both quality and quantity.
From the best Indian restaurants to some brilliant breakfasts, right through some thoroughly enjoyable pubs, we detail the best places to eat (with a little help from our food expert Mark Taylor, who has reviewed many of these restaurants).
Think we’ve missed off somewhere obvious? Feel free to let us know in the comments and we may head down to see if it should be included. Read More Bar 44
Bar 44 is brought to us by the family behind the award-winning restaurant in South Wales. Tom, Owen and Natalie Morgan were all educated in in Bristol and have established themselves as some of the most prominent names in Spanish cooking in the UK.
Okay, so as far as teams of three with the same surname cooking Spanish food go, they’re not yet the Roca brothers. Bar 44 has just opened in Clifton Village (Image: Bar 44)
However, their opening in Bristol quickly grabbed strong reviews . Expect high-quality ingredients, a social atmosphere and plenty of sherry (if you fancy it).
What Mark said
With its authentic cooking and formidable sherry list, Bar 44 brings a genuine taste of Spain’s bustling bodegas to Bristol. More Cadiz than Clifton, it’s one of the most significant new openings of the year. Nutmeg
The Mall Nutmeg serves some of the finest curry you’ll find anywhere in Bristol. Another string to the high-end Indian restaurant’s bow is its decor, with striking brightly-painted walls which look as impressive as the food tastes. Nutmeg in Clifton
It boasts a cracking early and lunchtime menu including the traditional South Indian breakfast of masala dosa with vegetable sambar and traditional street snacks such as aloo chaat papadi. Read More Eat a Pitta
Can you even call yourself a Bristolian if you haven’t eaten one of Eat a Pitta’s hummus boxes or wraps? Because what’s even the point in eating other falafel once you’ve been to Eat a Pitta?
The queues are always massive but the staff there get through it with unnerving speed and accuracy. It’s the cheapest of fuel, and a somewhat guilt-free way of getting your comfort food fix. Eat a Pitta in Bristol (Image: Bristol Live)
The falafels are made to a recipe used by the owner’s grandmother in Algiers 70 years ago.
What Mark said
Healthy, generous and affordable, Eat a Pitta’s falafels and salad in a box are still one of the best-value lunches in Bristol even if you do spend half of your lunch break queuing for them. Woky Ko
Larkin Cen made his name at Celtic Manor before turning his hand towards the Woky Ko project. This was first done in a smaller restaurant down at Cargo before it hiked up Park Street, decided the walk had knackered it out and settled in the perfect spot opposite the Wills Memorial Building. Ox cheek noodles at Woky Ko
What we’ve got here is a grown-up restaurant that demonstrates more finesse than the street-food offering down at Cargo. It’s addictive, healthy and the sort of food that I have to physically restrain myself from each time I walk home.
What Mark said
With so many Asian students at the university opposite looking for a taste of home, the authentic cooking at Woky Ko: Kauto is destined to make it a surefire success. Read More Coconut Tree
A lot of faces fell when it was announced that Illusions on Clifton Triangle would be closing. The blow was softened somewhat when we realised that The Coconut Tree would be arriving instead.
Bristol (and, to be fair, most of the UK) is not renowned for its Sri Lankan offering. This place, which is one of two in Bristol and further eateries in Oxford and Cheltenham, changes that. Hot battered spicy cuttlefish (£7)
The idea is that the food is inexpensive (it is) and that it can be shared (if you’re me, it can’t). We’re told it’s authentic but my knowledge of the cuisine isn’t anywhere near strong enough to confirm. It’s tasty and comes with plenty of heat if you so desire.
What Mark said
The music might be loud and the vibe more club-like than refined restaurant, but The Coconut Tree’s buzzy, urban British take on Sri Lankan street food at affordable prices is as heady as the cocktails and spicy dishes on offer. Read More The Clifton Sausage
Clifton Sausage is different to many of the restaurants above in that it serves primarily British food.
One of my colleagues was confident it deserved a place on this list purely on the strength of the brunch.
The first Saturday of every month is their bottomless brunch. Here you get a meal (full, eggs chorizo, eggs benedict, veggie hash etc) and as much Prosecco and Bloody Marys as you can handle on a Saturday morning. Beef and ale sausage and mash from the Clifton Sausage.
Elsewhere, the menu is traditional and built around the strength of their sausages. Toad in the hole is an option and they even do a sausage tasting plate. Despite their success, prices remain as unpretentious as the sausages themselves. Read More Urban Kohinoor
Urban Tandoor expanding into new territory was something of an inevitability. Their success and reputation (they’ve won so many awards at this point that it makes Lionel Messi look a failure) no doubt made it a no-brainer.
The menu mimics that of the city centre restaurant, with a mix of old favourites, signature dishes and, most pertinently, the meat offerings from the grill. Goan Chicken Vindaloo at Urban Kohi Noor
These restaurants excel because they combine the vibe of old school curry houses with a touch of the sophistication required in 2018. It’s a different beast to what you’ll get at Nutmeg, and it’s great to have two different, brilliant places for Indian food up this way.
What Mark said
Urban Kohinoor replicates the excellent food and service of the Small Street original , which may now watch its back when it comes to future awards for Bristol’s best curry house. Who said sibling rivalry couldn’t be a healthy thing? 99 Queens
99 Queens is the go-to place for a breakfast at the weekend for many people in Clifton.
Fresh orange juice, bloody Marys, veggie and vegan options that would give the meat dishes a black eye, and a signature poached egg offering are things you must try. Instagram
There are also sandwiches if you’re not feeling up to a breakfast.
It’s incredibly friendly, even when busy, and the sort of place you feel both comfortable and at home. Nettle & Rye
Mark does not like the Sunday roasts here, or waiting for them. He made that clear in his last review.
However the steak and fish dishes here are exemplary. The daily specials are always worth investigating too.
On top of that, the beer offering is some of the finest in the city, making it a must-visit if you’re heading away from the city centre rather than towards it. Like us on Facebook
As delightful as it gets: Bhojpuri cuisine
Hello, Health As delightful as it gets: Bhojpuri cuisine The cuisine that transverses from the northern agricultural lands of Bihar, Jharkhand, Orissa, and Uttar Pradesh, to your kitchens — delighting your palate and health on the way. 4093 Total Shares
Indian cuisine and the traditional way of eating is sort of having a comeback.
Thanks to a better understanding of all that is good with it, it is again being considered being cool — even by those thoroughly enchanted with everything exotic and alien.
One cuisine though that still needs to be brought more into the spotlight is the Bhojpuri style of cooking, from the northern agricultural lands of Bihar, Jharkhand, Orissa, and Uttar Pradesh.
Chicken, lamb, seasonal vegetables, wheat, rice, and sattu are the main pillars of this flavourful cuisine that is high energy, rich in calories and carbohydrates.
There’s much more to this cuisine than just the litti choka (rustic fried wheat ball, stuffed with roasted gram flour, usually accompanied by a tangy dip made of charred eggplants, tomatoes or mashed potatoes mixed with spices and herbs called chokha).
When heavens descend on a leaf plate: The litti smeared with ghee and topped with chokha, tempered with green chilli and chutneys. The litti chokha platter’s journey starts from the kitchen and travels straight to the heart of heartland. (Source: Wikimedia Commons)
I realised this when I met Pallavi Nigam Sahay — the author of The Bhojpuri Kitchen — and went through her book that details the nuances of little-known food culture. Sahay, a former insurance professional who trained as a chef in Italy, has painstakingly curated she known and some lesser known Bihari recipes like the baingan badi ki sabzi (aubergine curry with black gram fritters), dhuska (rice and Bengal gram pancakes), sattu ki kachodi, Bihari halwai style mutton, and laukiwali geeli khichdi (my personal favourite) in the book.
As I researched, I realised that while on the face of it this is a cuisine heavy on calories and carbs, there is a lot of good in this way of eating. For starters, they use mustard oil extensively and this heart-healthy oil helps to raise the good HDL cholesterol, and being a natural stimulant it also enhances digestion and improves the appetite. Not many know that the oil’s high selenium content also helps reduce inflammation in the body.
Then there is the fragrant “tadka” they use in this cuisine (it is well-known for its unique combinations of spices), and the characteristic “panchphoran“— a mix of cumin, fenugreek, mustard, caraway and nigella seeds. All the spices up the health benefits of the food.
Panch Phoran: The heady spice mix that ups the gastronomic quotient. (Source: Wikimedia Commons)
They also use garlic (raw and cooked) and mustard (as a paste and to drizzle raw) in leafy greens and chutneys generously. This too bodes well for our health. While garlic is high in antioxidants, a brilliant detoxifier and helps keep our blood pressure in check, mustard helps improve our heart’s health, the high selenium content boosts bone health and the magnesium content helps one sleep better.
The comfort food: Dal Pithi. (Source: Wikimedia Commons)
The health conscious can also do well to discover the delights of makhana and sattu — both staples of this cuisine. Sattu ka sherbet (a drink made from roasted gram powder flavored with cumin powder and black salt) is the perfect way to boost your protein intake and stay cool from inside. This home-grown sattu sherbet can keep you going the entire morning. Sattu ka paratha, roti made of sattu again is a great way to cut down wheat from the diet and have a higher protein grain instead. And makhana — a low glycemic index, gluten-free seed — is a good source of protein and fibre, besides controlling the BP owing to their low-sodium, high-potassium composition. They also deliver the rare-to-find vitamin B1 (thiamine) — that plays a key role in nerve, muscle and heart function, and is the key to converting the carbohydrates we eat to energy in the body.
The Dal Pithi — a comforting dish made of wheat dumplings drowned in tangy lentil soup, is a great combination of fibre and proteins and makes for a filling lunch or dinner.
The desserts in this cuisine are also very interesting and healthy.
Tilkut — the staple Bhojpuri dessert that is a nutty, crunchy snack bar of wholesome goodness. (Source: Wikimedia Commons)
Be it tilkut — the nutty sweetness that is a crunchy snack bar made of sesame seeds and sugar — often eaten for breakfast, or the dahi chura — the sweet yoghurt fare with rice flakes. These desserts are nutritious beyond doubt and are effortless owing to minimal cooking involved.
Then there are the chana dal laddoo and parwal ki mithai (sweetened and stuffed pointed gourd) which according to Sahay, are jaw-dropping and mind-blowing delicacies.
I am absolutely certain that we include more of this cuisine in our dietary regimen. With convincing spokespersons like Sahay, it is only a matter of time before it enters more kitchens and woos more palates. #Traditional foods , #Indian Cuisine , #Healthy food , #Bhojpuri cuisine The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of DailyO.in or the India Today Group. The writers are solely responsible for any claims arising out of the contents of this article. Writer The writer is a nutritionist, weight management consultant and health writer based in Delhi. She is the author of Don’t Diet! 50 Habits of Thin People (Jaico) and Ultimate Grandmother Hacks: 50 Kickass Traditional Habits for a Fitter You (Rupa). Like DailyO Facebook page to know what’s trending.
Gander tasting the world — and raising money to feed hungry kids
Reem Saliba Al Baquen doesn’t think of herself as much of a chef, but she hopes that by sharing her favourite foods, she’ll teach others about her culture.
Born in Jordan, Al Baquen is one the organizers of the Gander Rotary Club’s International Food and Tasting Fundraiser event.
Reem Saliba Al Baquen is one of the organizers of the Gander Rotary Club’s International Food and Tasting Fundraiser. She gives CBC’s Melissa Tobin a taste of Jordan before the event. 5:19 “It’s nice to see different cultures together. And that’s why we’re doing the food event, to have people learn about our different food and culture,” she said. “And at the same time we’re doing it for a good cause.”
Al Baquen makes a great cup of Arabic coffee, served with Jordanian biscuits and fresh fruit. (Melissa Tobin/CBC) Al Baquen will be cooking a fusion of Middle Eastern dishes. With the help of other volunteers, there will be cuisines from more than 15 different cultures represented in Gander — like Indian, Jamaican, Polish and Syrian — taking part in the event.
The money raised will support a lunch program for Gander’s four schools.
The lunch program was started in November of last year by the Salvation Army after they learned some kids were missing school because they had no food at lunchtime.
When word got out about the program, donations to the Salvation Army’s food bank from business and other community members began to happen, and the Gander Rotary Club got involved.
Kibbeh mousel is an Iranian dish, made from cracked wheat and meat, stuffed with beef, onions and spices. The Jordanian rice vermicelli is made with toasted almonds and raisins. (David Newell/CBC) There are 150 tickets for the tasting. Al Baquen hopes it’s something they can continue to do annually.
She moved to Newfoundland almost eight years ago with her Armenian husband. She says she never started to cook until she moved to Canada and missed the taste of home. It’s often hard to find the ingredients to the foods she loves, she said.
Manaeesh zataar is made with a flatbread, coated in olive oil and zataar – a spice blend including thyme, oregano, marjoram, and sumac. (David Newll/CBC) “Some stuff I find at Co-op or Dominion. But other stuff … certain spices, I have to buy it from Toronto or Jordan when I go there.”
Things like rice vermicelli, the spice-blend zaatar and Arabic coffee.
But she leaves her favourites dishes for her visits home.
“There’s some Arabic food that’s Jordanian — you’d be preparing it for two days, especially the vine leaves and mansaf. But the taste is worth it.”
This Arabic salad is made with cucumber, tomatoes, chick peas, wish a dash of spices and lemon juice. (David Newell/CBC) And healthier than some of the foods she’s used to here.
“We don’t use lots of fats. And it’s usually based on vegetables.”
The Gander Rotary Club’s International Food and Tasting Fundraiser is Saturday from 3 to 6 p.m.
Read more from
Cultural appropriation: Why is food such a sensitive subject? – Go Current
Image copyright Getty Images Earlier this week, a restaurant in New York made headlines for rather unfortunate reasons.
Lucky Lee’s, a new Chinese restaurant run by a Jewish-American couple, advertised itself as providing “clean” Chinese food with healthy ingredients that wouldn’t make people feel “bloated and icky the next day”.
It told Eater website : “There are very few American-Chinese places as mindful about the quality of ingredients as we are.”
It prompted a fierce backlash on social media from people who accused the restaurant of racist language, cultural appropriation, and a lack of understanding of Chinese food.
The restaurant’s Instagram account was besieged with thousands of angry comments, including some which questioned the credentials of a white couple running a Chinese restaurant – as well as comments from defenders who accused the “online slacktivists” of being easily offended, and targeting the restaurateurs simply because of their race.
The whole debate became so polarised that ratings site Yelp placed an “unusual activity” alert on the restaurant’s page after it was flooded with both positive and negative reviews, many seemingly from people who hadn’t actually been to the restaurant.
Lucky Lee’s has since issued a statement saying that it was not “commenting negatively on all Chinese food… Chinese cuisine is incredibly diverse and comes in many different flavours (usually delicious in our opinion) and health benefits”.
It added that it would “always listen and reflect accordingly” to take “cultural sensitivities” into account.
The owner, Arielle Haspel, told the New York Times : “We are so sorry. We were never trying to do something against the Chinese community. We thought we were complementing an incredibly important cuisine, in a way that would cater to people that had certain dietary requirements.” Image copyright Lucky Lee’s
The uproar is the latest in a series of rows over food and cultural appropriation.
US celebrity chef Andrew Zimmern came under fire for saying that his restaurant Lucky Cricket would save people from the low-standard “restaurants masquerading as Chinese food that are in the Midwest”. Critics accused him of being patronising towards smaller restaurants run by immigrant families, and he later issued an apology .
Meanwhile, in the UK, supermarket chain Marks and Spencer was accused of cultural appropriation after it produced a new vegan biriyani wrap, despite the Indian dish normally being served with rice and meat.
And Gordon Ramsay’s new London restaurant , Lucky Cat, was criticised for selling itself as an “authentic Asian Eating House”– despite not having an Asian chef.
When did food become such a sensitive topic – and why does it provoke such strong reactions from both sides of the debate? Food can be closely linked to identity
For many people – particularly those from ethnic minority backgrounds – food can be both personal, and political.
Second and third generation immigrants often have “a sense of loss of their own culture – their attire is western, their language is western, and food is almost the last of the cultural domain that they retain a vivid memory of”, Krishnendu Ray, a sociologist and professor of food studies at New York University, tells the BBC.
Many Chinese Americans have talked about their experiences growing up – for example when classmates would make fun of the food in their lunch boxes.
Luke Tsai, a food writer in the San Francisco Bay Area, says: “We grew up in the US with a sort of in-between status of our identity. Were we American? Were we Chinese? It was hard to find acceptance in a lot of mainstream culture.
He remembers being “slightly ashamed” of Chinese food when he was younger –“I didn’t want to bring Chinese food for my lunch at school – I wanted a sandwich or pizza to fit in.” Image copyright Alamy
“People would say: ‘Why are you eating that smelly thing? That’s gross!’”
“But for many of us as we got older, we remembered the food our parents cooked us, and it became a great source of nostalgia for us – in a way, embracing that was embracing the Asian, immigrant side of our identity.”
Many Chinese restaurants deliberately adapted their menus to serve more fried foods or thickened sauces because those were items a “mainstream white audience” were more familiar with, he adds.
“The reason that they opened those restaurants was not because they couldn’t cook their ‘true’ Chinese food, it was because that was what they did to survive and cater to their audience.
“So to see that flipped around nowadays, and have a white restaurateur open a restaurant and say ‘we’re not like those Chinese American restaurants you know about, we’re serving clean Chinese food… is particularly hurtful and offensive for a lot of people.”
There’s also a historical context to this. In the 1880s, the US passed legislation barring Chinese workers from immigrating to the US. Only a few categories were exempt – including restaurateurs – and historians say this contributed to a boom in Chinese restaurants in the US.
Yet “American exposure to Chinese food has mostly been cheap Chinese food”, and the cuisine has been associated with “a kind of disdain” due to the presumption that it is associated with “cheap ingredients and mostly untrained labour”, says Prof Ray.
“Very few Americans realise or know that China probably had the most sophisticated food culture in the world at least 500 years before the French did.” Whose food is it anyway?
Some of the sharpest criticism on both sides has been around ownership.
Some negative social media comments about Lucky Lee’s have focused on the fact that the owners are white – while critics have responded that it would be ridiculous to suggest that only Chinese people are allowed to cook Chinese food.
Francis Lam, host of The Splendid Table radio programme, believes that a lot of the furore around cultural appropriation and food is due to a “disconnect in the conversation”.
“I think if you’re a chef or restaurant owner, it’s fair to say you probably put a lot of yourself into your business, and don’t want to hear it when you think people are saying ‘you’re not allowed to do that’.”
However, he thinks that for those opposed to cultural appropriation, the issue is “not about who’s allowed or not allowed to do things”, but rather about the manner in which things are done.
“If you are going to promote yourself as someone who cooks or sells food from a culture you didn’t grow up in, I would say it’s also your responsibility to make sure you’re doing it in a way that truly respects the people who grew up in the culture – and the people who frankly invented some of the things you’re doing.” Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Andy Ricker says chefs need to be respectful – but also need a thick skin
Andy Ricker, an award-winning chef and bestselling cookbook author, spent 13 years learning about Thai cuisine, familiarising himself with ingredients and the language, before starting the restaurant chain Pok Pok.
He is recognised as an expert in northern Thai cuisine – and his approach has been praised by Asian chefs and food critics. However, others have also questioned why a white chef is being seen as the authority on Thai food, rather than a Thai one.
He suggests chefs should “be aware that language is important”, and try “to be as accurate and faithful as you can”.
“I can’t say that I’m making authentic food because I don’t have any claim to that.”
The most important thing for chefs like him, he says, is to “be respectful and not claim anything is yours. Don’t apply labels to food – don’t just add chillies, basil and peanuts to something and call it Thai, or put something in a sandwich and call it Banh Mi… you’re playing to clichés which is not a good look”.
He also says it’s crucial for chefs to “grow a thick skin – it doesn’t matter what’s in your heart or how careful you are about what you say, there’s going to be people who just aren’t having it.”
Meanwhile, Chris Shepherd cooks a range of cuisines at UB Preserv in Houston, Texas, but says highlighting and cherishing the cultures that inspired him is important to him. Image copyright Julie Soefer Image caption Chris’s dishes include “boudin siu mai”– a take on a type of Chinese dumpling
His restaurant’s bills come with a listing of his favourite local restaurants, and the message “we’d love to have you back at UB Preserv, but we politely request that you visit at least one of these folks first”.
He acknowledges that his restaurant attracts more funding and publicity than many small businesses, but says his goal is to “get people who wouldn’t normally go” to those places, or try different cuisines, to “visit these restaurants and become part of this community”. Why is it hard to separate food and politics?
These days, there seems to be constant debate about identity politics, and an endless stream of incidents provoking outrage. It can certainly feel tempting to keep politics out of food.
But commentators argue that the food business, like any other business, is linked to power structures and privilege – and it’s not a level playing field for everyone.
“If you’re opening a business you’re already engaging with the public, making decisions about who you’re going to hire, who can afford to eat at your restaurant, what your staff is going to look like – there’s hundreds of decisions you’re making that will have an impact on society,” Mr Tsai says.
Meanwhile, Prof Ray says that his research suggests some ethnic minority chefs may face specific barriers.
“There is a tendency to ‘ghettoise’ Chinese, Mexican and Indian American chefs into cooking ‘their own food’, whereas white chefs tend to find it easier to cross boundaries”, and are seen as “artistic” when they do. Image copyright REY LOPEZ Image caption Kwame Onwuachi, 29, has been nominated for awards for his cooking
Kwame Onwuachi says in his memoir that, during a casting session, a television producer told him that US audiences would not be prepared to see a black chef like him doing fine dining.
Similarly, chef Edourdo Jordan has previously told GQ that some people found it hard to believe he was the owner of a restaurant serving French and Italian food.
Mr Ricker agrees that white chefs face some advantages when cooking in the West.
“Of course in white dominant culture, white people always get away with more than other people. But I would say this too – if you’re a westerner trying to cook in Thailand you’re faced with a massive amount of scepticism and sometimes downright derision…. I think it’s human nature for the dominant culture to pigeon hole people who’re not of their culture.” It all comes down to money
These perceptions also have financial implications that affect restaurants’ bottom lines.
In one study, Prof Ray found that dishes from certain cuisines were seen as more prestigious, enabling restaurants to charge more.
For example, an average meal at a Zagat-listed French or Japanese restaurant cost about $30 more than an average meal at a Zagat-listed Chinese or Southern restaurant in 2015, his research found.
Chef Jonathan Wu encountered this when he opened a high-end Chinese restaurant, Fung Tu, in New York.
The restaurant received excellent reviews, with Bloomberg calling the food “genius” , and the New York Times giving it a two-star, “very good” review . Image copyright Paul Wagtouicz Image caption One of the dishes at Fung Tu – egg whites poached in a broth with Toona sinesis leaves
But Mr Wu says he received a lot of “blowback” for its prices, with complaints that the restaurant was “too expensive for what it is”.
Fung Tu closed down in 2017, and was reopened as Nom Wah Tu, a dim sum restaurant with lower prices.
Mr Wu says there is still an “expectation that Chinese food is cheap”.
He compares how hand-made Chinese dumplings are sometimes sold for “five for a dollar”, whereas a high-end plate of ravioli can sell for “$45 a plate”.
“If you tried that for a plate of dumplings, people would freak out.” Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Which would you pay more for? Are things changing?
In a way, the whole cultural appropriation debate is also “a symptom of a very visible, assertive, middle and professional class” of people from ethnic minorities in the US, says Prof Ray.
And US perceptions of Chinese food could be radically different in 20 years’ time, due to China’s economic rise, and a growing Chinese middle class presence in US cities.
Prof Ray says a similar process happened from the 1980s with Japanese food, as the culture became associated with affluent immigrant groups or businessmen.
In the meantime, the cultural appropriation debate is likely to continue – but not everyone thinks that’s a bad thing.
“We’re experiencing growing pains in this whole conversation, but the bigger picture is that it’s amazing to see how the American palate has widened, and there is a greater market acceptance of different stories and backgrounds,” says Mr Lam.
“These conversations can seem frustrating and tiresome, but you have to have them.”
Mr Ricker agrees. “There’s a lot of angst, anger and defensiveness out there, [but] it’s important that people understand the sensitivity around food and culture, because they’re very powerful things. I don’t think it’s comfortable for anybody, but it’s certainly necessary.”
Satisfy those midnight cravings
With a booming growth of corporate companies in Hyderabad and a prevalence of graveyard shifts, it is not an uncommon sight these days to find a chain of eateries lined up outside swanky office buildings. But, what it is gradually bringing is an emerging street eats culture in the city with which the night is remaining young and lively till the dawn.
Just make a casual visit to a place where a number of corporate offices are housed in a huge building and you will find employees sipping a hot tea, having a bite of crunchy dosas or satisfying their taste buds with lip-smacking shawarmas, in lanes and by-lanes near those buildings. These food joints are not just offering a variety of options to serve different appetites of techies but they have become places to satisfy midnight food cravings of Hyderabadis who are not hesitating to travel an extra mile during odd hours.
Photos: Surya Sridhar Be it the eat street near DLF Cybercity in Gachibowli or eateries near Avasa Hotel in Madhapur or food joints opposite to Western Pearl building in Madhapur, to name a few, they have become hotspots for foodies. Gone are the days when Ram ki Bandi in Kachiguda which offers a variety of Dosas was the go-to option for late-night hunger cravings. Now, food streets like the ones near the DLF are ruling the roost, courtesy the diverse cuisines that are being offered.
Eateries in the lanes opposite to DLF building are open for public till 4 am which are making a big business mainly due to the presence of various corporate offices housed inside the DLF building. These stalls offer all kinds of food from north Indian to south Indian to Chinese and northeast; just name the food, you will have it here.
They have also become spots to introduce a newer variety of tastes which the city never heard of. One such offbeat beverage is Tandoori Chai which gives a natural taste of soil in every sip you have. Tandoori Chai was popular in other cities like Mumbai but was first introduced in Hyderabad at the DLF eat street. Sanjay Yadav, owner of the Tandoori Chai stall, says, “People from across the city are coming to have Tandoori Chai and we chose this place to start our business as the place is attracting more customers and there are chances of making good money.”
Such huge is the scale of business here, even small size food vendors are earning decent bucks. “We sell more than 300 plates of Maggie every day and we also get online orders from surrounding areas of Kondapur and Madhapur,” says Surender, owner of Hunger Adda Maggie point, one of the crowded eateries at the DLF.
Boon for techies Photos: Surya Sridhar Wherever you look around this place, there is a chance that you might end up finding some eatery which will serve something new, unique, and differently delicious. This very presence of a chain of eateries at the place literally made it the biggest eat street in the city and has turned out to be a boon for the techies working inside DLF building.
“We have limited food options inside our cafeteria; there are hundreds of options here and we can find every variety at the same place. I like Irani Chai and Bobbatlu ,” said Kavya Beerval, an employee of Cognizant.
Shravan Kumar, a techie, says, “One biggest advantage is there is a guarantee that we get food at any time of the day and also every day, we can try different food as we have a lot of options. I like Butter Dosa , Tawa Idli and Momos served here.”
Hangout place for students Unlike other eatery chains in the city, DLF eat street has the distinction of getting crowded by students because two universities – University of Hyderabad and IIIT, are located near this food junction.
“The place offers tasty food at a reasonable price and also food is available even during odd hours. The presence of this huge chain of food stalls near our campus is also a kind of relaxation to go and hangout out with friends during midnight,” said M Vishnu Priya, a student of the University of Hyderabad.
“Living away from home, late night food cravings are always a part of my life for a hosteller like me. DLF food junction offers a variety of food and beverages to satisfy those cravings. Going there with a small group of friends and sharing the food with them makes it even better,” said another student, V Sravan.
Whether it is DLF eat street or any other eatery chain in the city, the reason they are attaining popularity is owing to the diverse range of food items they offer for night owls and insomniacs. And, what best way than making the tummy happy to reach out to a person’s heart.
@SueSueDio thank you! Great post! I def crave my Italian food and my naan for my Indian cuisine! I will try to stop consuming carbs when I have the right mindset and test the waters to see if this diet works for me. Thanks again friend! April 14, 2019 5:57AM