Vietnam: Bun ChayThe first time I ate this was in Hue, Vietnam when my friend and wandered off the proverbial beaten path and into a broken down bar along ‘The Perfume River.’ We sat in plastic chairs in the shade, drank frighteningly strong coffee and nibbled on this: a fantastic salad of cold rice noodles, bean sprouts, pickled jicama and carrots, peanut sauce and fried tofu.
My mouth is filling with saliva as I write that. Yuuummmmmmdroooollll. Here’s a recipe for bun chay if you’re keen to play along at home. Or, if you live in the Twin Cities, hit up Trieu Chau for the best Vietnamese this side of the Mekong.
Taiwan: Stinky TofuWhen I first smelled the Stinky Tofu vendor outside of my apartment in Chung Li, I was fairly sure that a sewer had overflowed. Or that a dead body was about to be discovered. Or a dead body was about to be discovered in an overflowing sewer.
However! As bad as it smells, that’s as good as it tastes. Fact. Don’t let that wimpy Andrew Zimmerman tell you otherwise. I used to buy a carton of these fried tofu cubes topped with sri racha and pickled vegetables from a street vendor every day for dinner. That is, until my students started pointedly asking me what I’d been eating. Awkward.
If you’re feeling adventurous, here’s a recipe for stinky tofu that you can make yourself!
I’m still not sure how I was able to leave Greece under my own leg power. I rather expected that someone would have to roll me over the border. So much amazing food around every corner. Moussaka! Various tapenades! Ouzo! 8 million different cheeses! My travel journal from my month in Greece mostly consists of detailed analysis of my meals. Well, that and my increasingly awesome tan.Greek Yogurt makes an amazing breakfast – and obviously no recipe required (Greek yogurt + fruit + honey + walnuts). For a long time I felt like it was too decedent for weekday breakfasting, but lately? I’ve been feeling decadent.
I am not exaggerating when I tell you that I have had four pieces of avocado toast already today. It’s 3:22 pm as I’m typing this. Maybe this gives you an insight into the depth of my obsession with avo toast. Again, no recipe – just really good toast, plus mashed avocado (usually one fourth of an avocado per slice of bread) and a bit of salt.Of course, avocado is most perfectly paired with The Best Bread In The World, NZ’s own Vogel’s. But, if you’re stateside, English Muffin Toasting Bread is a semi-decent stand in. So. good.
What treats have you discovered while traveling?