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Mar 18, 2009 01:59 PM

Have you ever lived overseas?

Many of you, I assume are US born and raised, like me. But I got a chance to live in the UK for about 5 years and travel a lot in Europe. It gave me (and my young children) an appreciation for lots of different foods and recipes. I have also travelled the world a lot for business and sampled things, But living in a place opens all sorts of new experiences.

My son now lives in Barbados and when we visited, he took us to some off the beaten track places to sample some Caribbean/Bajan food that is not easliy found. And of course, in our own family, British Bacon is now a must, and various French and Swiss and German dishes regularly appear on the supper table.

So.the question is..have you ever had a chance to live overseas and what new dishes did you come away with? Travelling there for business or a short tourist-type stay doesn't count (unless the food thingy was spectacular!!!!!!!!!!...LOL)

Oh, and I already know, Sam will outshine us all in his collection!

Since I have to stick to the "live-there" rule, I must confine my goody to the UK - it was bacon butty. Not very fancy, but the bacon there is so much leaner and tastier. It's served on a roll with some Brown Sauce. Yummy! Sort of like a BLT without the garden stuff (nor mayo)!

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  1. And for those of you who were born and brought up elsewhere..........have you ever lived in the US or elsewhere and found some tasty morsels to bring back?

    1. Hi there. I am originally from Argentina and have been living in the UK for the past 7 years (with a few interruptions). When I was 20, I decided to move to Mexico on my own and it was such an eye-opener on so many levels. I discovered a whole new world of colours, textures, sounds and flavours that truly blew me away and took me out of the boring, samey stuff I was used to. At first, I couldn't stomach half of the food, having to request for everything 'without chilli' (how pathetic is that!) and opting for bland quesadillas or tacos.
      Thankfully, I met some wonderful friends who introduced me to proper Mexican home cooking and, although I wouldn't dare claim I can rustle up anything remotely as good as them, I have certainly incorporated Mexican rice, tacos, sopes, pollo con mole and frijoles refritos to my usual staples.

      My true passion for food developed whilst in the UK, fascinated by the contrast between the wonderful foreign influences and food you find here and the lack of local food culture. Most Brits I know eat roast dinners, pies, chips and spag bol and very few cook from scratch. Things are changing but very slowly...What I'll always be grateful to the UK for is fr introducing me to Indian food...I don't know how I lived without it before! I cook simple curries at home, make my own naan bread and mango chutney and I am still incorporating new things, slowly but surely. Ah! And Yorkshire puddings! They rock...

      1 Reply
      1. re: Paula76

        Interesting! I had forgotten about Indian Food in the UK, since I had had it here in the US so often, but you're is very good and very different there!

        Same is true of your Mexican experience. Having a few business associates in Mexico and having been able to dine at their houses, it opens a whole new world of tastes and textures!

        Thanks for the insights!

      2. I live in Bhutan right now. I've acquired a taste for dried beef that is surprising, as I don't normally care for beef. Also, food without a little chili now seems bland, and I've really come to enjoy szechuan pepper and fiddlehead ferns. Don't know how much of that will carry over when I move back home. But I am ruined for chai. I had it twice when I was home last summer and it was way too sweet and not spicy enough. Sometimes they put an awful lot of sugar in the tea here, but still not as much as American coffeeshops with their packaged chai mixes.

        3 Replies
        1. re: babette feasts

          Babette: I totally envy you where you live. I've only visited Bhutan aeons ago when I was a pre-teen. If you don't mind sharing, what's the nature of your work there? Thanks ...

          1. re: Rasam

            Rasam, I'm the pastry chef for a luxury resort. Sounds cushy, and sometimes it is. Other times....not so much.

            I've also become a big fan of roti and puri, and wish the chefs would put spicy aloo paratha on the breakfast menu so I could have it every morning with yogurt. I had that when I visited the south and thought it was a perfect breakfast.

          2. re: babette feasts

            what a great place to be, Babette! I envy you. I suspect you will kick up the spices a bit on your return since they have all those lovely spicey dishes there.

          3. I was born in Norway but grew up in Trinidad and l came away from the Caribbean with an love for highly spiced foods, thus my moniker.Like Barbados, Trinidad has a mingling of many ethnic groups and the cuisine reflects it. From the Rotis, Shark and bake,Crab and Callaoo, to the more recognizable Black Pudding, Ox tail Stew and Fruit cake.Now after having spent half of my life in America, my wife and I think nothing of driving 2 hours to dine at a Thai Restaurant just to experience the burn. Life is good.

            1 Reply
            1. re: currymouth

              Across the street from where my son lives in Barbados is a combination Indian and Thai restaurant. Very upscale and a bit pricey, but oh, so, delicious! You can order from either menu or both.

              And a roti from the little street vendor on the South Coast road is superb!

            2. I lived one year in Bequia in St. Vincent and the Grenadines and 2 years in northern India, and each really expanded my tastes. I will hunt down roti and anything with conch, and almost always find fault with it anyway. In India, a local specialty was a dish that cooked kidney-type beans in a fruited yogurt sauce until the yogurt separated...very interesting (does anyone know what this is called? i can't for the life of me remember right now). Anyhow, it was frequently served in homes (I was in a remote location without many restaurants), and it took a while to grow on me, but now I find myself having cravings for it, even though I haven't the slightest idea how to make it.