Sunday, February 8, 2015

Tastebud Traveling

One of the most exciting parts of traveling is eating. There are so many types of foods to try around the world. If you are an adventurous eater there will be infinite flavores to expose your oral chemical receptors too.

First it's about trying something exotic, maybe something you have never had before. Anytime a tour guide grabs something from a tree I am the first one putting it in my mouth. Anticucho (cows heart) on the streets of Cuzco or maybe some parana wrapped in banana leaves in the Amazon. Seafood arepas in Puerto Rico? Have you had fresh civiche (raw fish) in Costa Rica? Have you had someone hand you a freshly opened coconut with a straw? Have you perused the offerings at a Indian wedding? 

With adventurous eating sometimes comes adventures in the bathroom. Is it worth it? It sure is. The memory of sitting on the toilet and vomiting in the sink at the sametime will fade but that amazing curry you just had will stay in your mind forever. 

Sometimes the best food is the food cooked in someone's home. The warmth that is stirred into the meal will fill you up more than anything on the street. As you sit with the family you will learn about the traditions and customs that come with the food. There are rules about eating. Maybe it's a prayer before Shabbat dinner in Israel or eating with your hands in India. Maybe the family maid in Chile cooks the best Chilean Sea Bass. If your lucky you might even get a cooking lesson. 

As you explore different flavores you need to quench your thirst. Have you tried a terrimoto (earthquake) in Santiago, Chile? How about wine in Argentina? Non-alcoholic beer in Israel? You can't leave India without enjoying a hot cup of chai. A day on the beach in Costa Rica is not complete without a fresh fruit smoothie. Of course it's important to have a mate while hanging out with Argentinian friends at the top of Machu Picchu. Of course purifying your water while hiking through the Himalayas in Nepal is important so you don't end up with Giardiasis. 

After a filling meal their is always room for a dessert. Have you had Beaver tail in Canada? Maybe a huge cupa of ice cream in Chile? Jalebi on the street in India is the best company for a cup of chai. Does a Havanna Alfajor from Argentina make you salivate, if not then a Sufganiyah from Israel or a Baklavah from Jordan will hit the spot. 

Sometimes it's not about what your eating but who your eating with. Food always tastes better with good company. 

And as any realtor knows location, location, location. I have had the opportunity to eat with some of the most beautiful views. I remember cooking bland mashed potatoes and pasta in Torres del Paine national park, Chile. Sitting with my sad plate of food I watched the sun dip behind the glacier and tuck itself behind the snowy mountains. My dal baath didn't compare to the clear view of the Annapurna mountain range as I ate at a local tea house in Upper Pisang, Nepal. Eating lunch with a view of Machu Picchu or the epansive Uyuni Salt Flats brings tears to your eyes. Enjoying a cup of tea in front of the Monastary in Petra Jordan and eating above the crashing waves at the Cliff House, San Francisco have been some of the most memorable moments of my life. 

No matter if you are with friends, family or all alone food can bring you comfort and memories that last a lifetime. Stimulating your taste buds with a snack while hiking through Yosemite, CA or a questionable cup of corn in the busy streets of a mumbai bazaar is a memory that will last a lifetime. It's important to respect the food you eat and give thanks to the people who prepare it for you. Many people go to bed around the world with empty stomachs, as you travel and try food, remember not to waste and to give back to the community if possible. 

No comments:

Post a Comment