Thursday, March 24, 2011

My Top Ten Cuisines

There is no disputing that I like to eat and that I like to eat almost everything.
Not much escapes my palate and if something is new or foreign or slightly weird, my curiouser and baser foodie self takes over and I open my mouth and say "aaaahhhh".
There are some things that I like more than most.
The other night, as I was flipping through Flipboard (my new favorite iPad app), I came upon an article titled "My Top Ten Cuisines".
This post is inspired by that.
So, to the followers of this blog (yes, my son and my husband) here is my Top Ten list of the food that I crave / lust / long for.
Filipino cuisine exempted because that would naturally be on the top of the list.
10. Middle Eastern - as exemplified by hummus, falafel (my "burger" substitute when I was a vegetarian many years ago), kofta, tahini, shawarma, olive oil, pita bread!
9. Moroccan - couscous, more olive oil, lamb, tajine, kefta, merguez (moroccan longganisa)
8. Spanish - chorizo, jamon, calamari (the real small, baby kind), tortilla de patatas, fabada!
7. Italian - pasta vongole, salami, gelato, gnocchi, pizza, cannoli (funny, I have only tried cannoli in New York can only imagine what the original one would taste like), LAMBRUSCO!
6. Mexican - enchiladas, tamales, burritos, tacos and I suppose nachos are Mexican in origin?
5. Indian - again, a very vegetarian friendly cuisine. Malai kofta, dosas, wonderful Indian breads all freshly baked in tandoor ovens, chicken tikka, mutton roghan josh, curries galore, cucumber raita to cool down your tongue.
4. Korean - hot hot hot! I love gochugang and will put it on anything, yes even just plain hot rice. Pajeon is a wonderful way to eat vegetables and barbecued ribs wrapped in lettuce with gochugang sends me into raptures.
3. Malay - by way of Singapore. Carrot cake (the turnip kind), bah kut teh, chicken rice, nasi lemak, rojak, chili crab, yong tau foo and the list goes on and on.
2. Chinese - I would kill for Peking Duck, char siew pork, crispy roast pork ... and one of these days, they will be the death of me.
1. And the number one top cuisine on my list, which I could eat any time and all the time, Pinoy food excluded, is (drum roll please ....) Japanese food!
Tonkatsu, chashu men, kushi age, unagi, uni, sushi and sashimi, nabe, soba, tempura, yakitori, pickles, yes even the dreaded natto -- I eat and love them all!
I have had many mediocre and some bad meals everywhere I have been
BUT I have never had a bad meal in Tokyo -- from the fanciest, Michelin starred establishment to the smallest, humblest izakaya to the vending machine at the train station -- Japanese food has never failed me! For that alone, for consistency above all else, it is at the very top of my list.

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