Around the world in… street foods

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    Words by Jocelyn Doyle

    We don’t have much of a street food culture here in Ireland (maybe because it’s not particularly pleasant to munch on a snack while standing in drizzle.) Street food can be one of the best experiences to have while travelling, though, and we’ve rounded up ten of the tastiest snacks made around the world to inspire your next holiday or culinary experiment!

     

    1. Empanadas, Latin America
    These are little pastries, stuffed with meat, cheese, veggies or fruits, and deep-fried. Empanadas trace their origins to Spain and Portugal, first appearing in Iberia during medieval times.

     

    2. Dolmades, Middle East
    Dolmades are delicate parcels made from vine leaves stuffed with long-grain rice, toasted pine nuts, onion, fresh herbs and spices. Meat dolmades are usually served warm, often with an egg-lemon sauce or garlic yoghurt, while meatless ones are served cold.

     

    3. Tamales, Mexico
    These trace their roots back to the Ancient Mayans, and today they’re a favourite comfort food in Mexico, eaten as both breakfast and dinner. Made of masa, a corn-based dough, tamales are stuffed with meats, cheese, fruits, vegetables or chillies and then steamed in a corn husk wrapper which is discarded before eating.

    Tamales

     

    4. Coxinhas, Brazil
    The name is Portuguese for “little thighs.” Coxinhas are made from shredded chicken mixed with onions, herbs, spring onions and sometimes cheese, wrapped in dough and deep-fried. They’re shaped to resemble little chicken drumsticks, which they were originally made from.

     

    5. Baozi, China
    These light, fluffy and soft dough buns are stuffed with a variety of fillings like pork, beef or vegetables and then gently steamed. They’re usually served with a soy-based dipping sauce for extra flavour.

     

    6. Arancini, Sicily
    Arancini are one of the most intensely delicious foods in the world. FACT. Leftover risotto is stuffed with cheese, ragu (meat sauce) or vegetables, then rolled in breadcrumbs and deep-fried to create the unctuous little street snacks ubiquitous to Sicily.

    Arancini

     

    7. Koba akondro, Madagascar
    Hailing from Madagascar, koba akondro is sold in marketplaces and gas stations. These little cakes are made by mixing ground peanuts, mashed banana, honey and cornflour into a batter. This batter is then wrapped in banana leaves, and then steamed or boiled until the batter has set.

     

    8. Samosas, India
    Oh, samosas. It’s physically impossible to order an Indian takeaway without succumbing to their spiced vegetable goodness. For anyone who isn’t already in love with them, samosas are tasty little pastry triangles stuffed with spiced potatoes, onions, peas and lentils.

     

    9. Pork satay, Thailand
    Thailand is renowned for its street food, and satay is a classic example (although it actually originated in Indonesia.) Sliced chicken, pork, goat, beef or fish is threaded onto skewers and barbecued over a fire, then served with spicy seasonings or sauces; the most popular option is chicken in a peanut sauce.

    Satay

     

    10. Currywurst, Germany
    Currywurst is a fast food dish consisting of a fried pork sausage topped with curry ketchup; pair it with chips and mayo for the real deal. Rather entertainingly, the currywurst has become a much-loved symbol of German culture; every candidate for Bürgermeister (mayor) of Berlin is photographed at a currywurst stand, and Berlin even has a dedicated currywurst museum!

     

    [Images featured via Shutterstock.]