It can get quite depressing living in Ireland if you’re getting soaked in the rain most of the time and don’t see the sun that often. That’s why Irish food is typically designed to warm the soul – think hearty stews, and soups.
But if you don’t want to indulge in typical Irish cuisine anymore, you don’t have to get on a plane to taste the yummy flavours of a summer holiday.
Ireland is teeming with diverse culinary tastes. Chef’s Pencil, a website with content for all levels of cooks and foodies, analysed data from Google Trends to find out how the food of the world ranks on the Irish’s palate.
Cook it yourself: Beef and Guinness stew
How does it work?
According to Chef’s Pencil, Google provides data on a whole range of topics, including national cuisines, and allocates a score that indicates the level of interest in the topic.
“Google uses AI to categorise search terms for national cuisines. For example, Japanese cuisine will comprise hundreds or thousands of searches related to the topic such as Japanese restaurants, Japanese rice, sushi, sushi recipes, Japanese food, and even names of well-known Japanese restaurants.
“Google then counts how often they are used in countries, towns, and cities relative to all local searches and allocates and interest score.”
If, for example, Galway scores 100 for Indian cuisine and Dublin scores 80, it just means that more people in Galway than in Dublin searched for terms that include Indian cuisine.
Top five popular ethnic cuisines in Ireland
So what are the top five cuisine terms searched for on the Emerald Isle?
5. Mexican – Popularity score: 12
The first thing that might jump to your mind when thinking Mexican is a delicious burrito. According to Chef’s Pencil, Dublin is the only city to get a significant score in the Google data for Mexican. “That’s not to say nowhere else likes the cuisine. According to Deliveroo, people in Galway are crazy about Mexican. And while Mexican comes fifth in the Google data, Deliveroo says Mexican tops the charts for office workers at lunchtime.”
Cook it yourself: Mexican chilli potato wedges
4. Indian – Popularity score: 20
Your mouth might start watering when you think of flavourful, hearty curries. Did you know that the first Indian restaurant opened its doors in Dublin in 1908? Gradually more Indian immigrants set up restaurants all over the island — which encouraged others to make the move here because they needed proper chefs. “The capital city for Indian food in Ireland is Lucan, an old spa town, which scored 100. Dublin came second with 92 and Cork third with 71,” according to Chef’s Pencil.
Cook it yourself: Healthy chicken tikka masala
3. Thai – Popularity score: 28
In the last few years, people from all over the world have become more conscious of eating healthy food. This might be why Thai food has become so popular, as it includes lots of green veggies, seafood and white meat flavoured with herbs and spices, making this cuisine not only incredibly tasty, but also very healthy.
Swords, just north of Dublin, scored 100, making it clear that Thai is a popular option in Ireland. Dublin came in second with 58 and Galway third with 48.
Cook it yourself: Veggie Thai red curry
2. Italian – Popularity score: 35
The first thing that comes to mind is probably a cheesy pizza or creamy pasta? And you might be surprised that it’s only in second place. Well, according to the Google data it scored 100 in Dublin. Cork came in second with 80 and Lucan in third with 64.
Cook it yourself: Perfect pizza
1. Chinese – Popularity score: 62
It’s no surprise that Chinese is the nation’s favourite ethnic cuisine. “According to Deliveroo, last year’s Chinese New Year saw a rise of 208% in Chinese food orders on the same time the previous year,” according to Chef’s Pencil.
That figure was for only for Dublin. But what’s really interesting is that the capital doesn’t figure in the top three cities in the Google data!
“The area with clearly the greatest interest in Chinese food is the small town of Lucan in Co. Dublin, which scored 100, with the town of Swords in the same county, coming a very close second with 96, followed by Waterford, down south, with 84.”
Cook it yourself: Sweet and sour pork in crispy batter