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Favorite Street Food Worldwide

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I love street food. Hot dog cart, taco trucks, fry shacks; you name it, I love it. What are your favorites and where?
Some of mine: Taco trucks in Austin, in search of the holy pastor; fry shacks here in Maine for the perfect full-bellied fried clam; hot dog wagons in the east; hot dogs in Norway w/ a heaping mound of shrimp salad, shrimp stands for a cone full of sweet North Atlantic shrimp; sausage wagons in Helsinki for a liha piraka w/ 2 nakki ( a meat filled deep fried dough cut open on the end and stuffed w/ 2 hot dogs); road side pork sandwiches, anticuchos (bbq chicken hearts), grilled iguana and chicha in Bolivia; fish and chips in the old newspaper cone in the UK; blatidos, cerviche and chicharone in Costa Rica; and gyros anywhere. And more I can't remember. I can't wait for Korea this summer!

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  1. you're a well traveled chowhound, passa! didn't know street food was big in norway. thought it'd be too cold for street vendors to stay outside, for much of the year.

    a few of mine:

    -- xiamen spring rolls (non fried rice crepes filled with julienned cucumber, herbs, pork, sometimes oysters) in xiamen, china
    -- jiang bing (millet flour crepes with a lightly scrambled egg, cilantro, chives, brown sauce, rolled around a crispy cracker) in shanghai
    -- takoyaki in osaka
    -- curry wurst in berlin
    -- hainanese chicken rice in singapore
    -- halal chicken rice in nyc
    -- bhel poori from a chaatwallah in delhi
    -- aloo tikki, fresh fried, at a stand set off from a deserted stretch of beach in goa
    -- farinata in rome (it's actually a northern italian specialty, but the first time I tried it was in rome)

    ... and finally, two food items that are common around the world: french fries and grilled corn. i've had them everywhere from baja california to chennai and they were almost always wonderful.

    1 Reply
    1. re: cimui

      BBQ chicken on a stick & sticky rice in Laos
      Sausage or dried beef & sticky rice, Laos
      Breakfast tamales in Mexico & Guatemala
      Tacos at night in Mexico
      Chicken piri piri on a stick in Mozambique
      Banh mi in southern Vietnam
      Saise in Tarija, Bolivia
      Balut and BBQ chicken feet, Philippines
      Deep fried sparrow & grilled rice field rat, Burma
      Mutton on a stick & flatbread, outside of Lahore
      Hot dogs, Ottawa

    2. raw oysters in the latin qrt of Paris
      conck salad or fritters in bahamas
      beinets in New Orleans

      1. Peking: muslim lamb skewers
        Chengdu: skewers anything really
        Lhasa and other Tibetan enclaves in China: chips/fries, spiced (savoury) flat breads over coals
        Vietnam: just about anything really. i love it!
        Bolivia: salteñas!!!
        Germany: nothing is above the glorious bratwurst [however, in Munich... leberkaes on keizer roll]
        Portugal: porkchop in a roll/bun from the trailer at the beach.
        Belgian coast: whelk soup in a styrofoam cup. [and of course real chips which were actually invented by the Belgs]
        HK: skewered beef or fishballs
        can no longer remember Malaysia and Singapore street food but then i don't think there's any real street food in SIN.

        can't wait until december!

        2 Replies
        1. re: Pata_Negra

          I thought of saltenas, but I always ate them in a cafe w/ a good cup of coffee.
          Nathan's hot dogs and wursts in NYC (chestnuts too).
          Meat on a stick in Seoul & fried grubs.
          Frito pies in the bag in New Mexico
          Lobster, crab, clam, shrimp and scallop rolls here in Maine.

          1. re: Pata_Negra

            the hawker's market in Singapore, it may not be "on the street" but it seems to qualify to me... or is it not there any more?

          2. I love sausages.

            Kasekrainer in Vienna. Interestingly, there was a kasekrainer stand in the middle of Singapore's Chinatown. Kasekrainer and a chilled young coconut is a great combo!

            Taiwanese sausages. Either the simple ones you eat with a few pieces of raw garlic or the ones they score and then cover in minced raw garlic.

            1. New herring quqy side in Den Hague, Netherlands.
              Do tapas in a bar in Spain count?

              2 Replies
              1. re: Passadumkeg

                I was wondering the same thing about tapas in a bar. I was also wondering, does food eaten at various outdoor markets count? Such as the Boquieria in Barcelona, or various outdoor markets in France? I do a lot of eating in markets.

                1. re: moh

                  Yes, fish stew for breakfast at Los Posos market in Santa Cruz, Bolivia.
                  Wurst and a round roll in Frieberg

              2. Falafel, döner, or shawarma pita in Berlin. Currywurst is a distant second.
                Any grilled skewer or soup from a soup vendor in Bangkok.
                Vlaamse frites w/oorlog sauce in Amsterdam.
                Bocadillos in Valencia, Spain.
                Baguette w/good fromage in France.
                Pizza slices in Italy.
                Souvlaki on small wooden skewers in Greece.
                One of those breakfast sammiches from the lunch carts in Philly.

                1. Kenya - grilled corn and cassava with lemon, chilli and salt
                  India - pani puri served on those minute silver dishes and hot pau bhaji, smashed up on a huge tawa in front of your eyes
                  Singapore - ehole deep fried king prawns with their own unique chilli paste
                  Belgium - deep fried donuts covered in sugar crystals
                  Thailand - pad thai of a cart on Khao san road, with any added condiment you can name
                  South Africa - bratwirst with roasted twisted bread to wrap it in
                  Turkey - fresh steamed mussels with lemon
                  Rio - ice cold fresh cocunuts and street side capiringha's

                  1. Viet Nam in the 60's: Pho&* ban mi.

                    1. Noodle bowls and dumplings
                      falafel or schwarma
                      pretzels with lots of hot mustard or Donner kebabs
                      Waffles with sugar or Belgian fries.
                      Grilled dogs in NYC
                      crepes in France

                      I need to travel with Sam because he always seems to have best lists.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: Kelli2006

                        "I need to travel with Sam because he always seems to have best lists."

                        amen that that! not to mention he can speak a lot of languages!

                        i have to confess that i've actually thought about roasting central park rats on a kebab stick after reading sam's reports of grilled rice field rats in burma. his descriptions make me drool.

                      2. Ok-
                        Crepes from the Paris vendors
                        Pan Bagnat sandwiches from any small sandwich vendor in France
                        Churros from the old guy in the square in Bucerias, Mexico
                        Boiled corn painted with mayo and cheese from the corn lady in the same town
                        German pretzels with a slab of unsalted butter in Germany
                        Grattons de Lyon in Lyon, France
                        Old Country Sausage Hotdogs from the vendors in Winnipeg
                        street tacos in Bucerias

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: salsailsa

                          definitely Crepes in Paris - marron (chestnut and cream) is my fave
                          falafel in Israel
                          chips in Belgium or Holland with mayo
                          English chips with vinegar
                          a sandwich from Pret a Manger or Marks and Spencers in the UK
                          hot dog in NYC
                          Doughnuts on a pier in the UK
                          Funnel cakes and chili fries at a county fair
                          Arbroath Smokies in Arbroath Scotland - smoked in people's garages and sheds

                        2. Getting harder to find real old kine lunch wagon's in Honolulu, but Tsukenjo's Roast Pork from the red truck is hard to beat for plate lunch.

                          Many years ago I had souvlaki gyros in Athens, carved right off a spit... those were great.

                          1. ok, here goes:

                            1. Okinomi dog from Japadog in Vancouver B.C.
                            2. Super authentic tacos from a taco truck in Raleigh North Carolina. We were playing ultimate out in this park, when the Mexican soccer players suddenly stopped their game in the next field over and flocked in front of a taco truck. A bunch of us stopped playing, looked at each other and ran over to join them. Good call.
                            3. The original Blooming Onion truck in Ottawa, Ontario. That was a fine Blooming Onion.
                            4. Pa Jon (sea food and green onion pancake) in some small park in Korea, next to lava formations on a beach.
                            5. Freshly harvested abalone and various shell fish served raw with garlic and chili pepper sauce on a beach on Je Ju Do. This was offered by some of the famous women divers of this island, who had just harvested these shellfish that morning.
                            6. Pork neck bone soup from one of many vendors in Nam Dae Mun market, Seoul Korea.
                            7. Boqueria Market, Barcelona, Spain. Where do I start? Espresso, torta espagnole, fresh local mushrooms sauteed in butter and garlic, fresh cigale, also in butter garlic and parsley, various pastries, sandwiches of jamon iberico, candied fruit.
                            8. A small street market in Paris: the most delicious pickled cherry pepper stuffed with cheese.
                            9. Carrboro Market, North Carolina: Sweet potato pie from Miss Louise, heirloom tomatoes, fresh goat cheese spreads, divine peaches.
                            10. Jean-Talon Market, Montreal: spit-roasted lamb sandwiches with a spicy moroccan sauce, bison ribs and thin cut fried potato slices (not quite a chip, not quite a fry), fried fish and scallops with tartare sauce, freshly fried bhaji with tamarind sauce, crepes sweet and savoury (my favorite: classic ham, cheese and bechamel sauce), maple syrup candies, apple cider, polish donuts (pazcki) filled with apricot jam, and blood orange ice cream from Havres aux Glaces.
                            11. Roasted chestnuts in NYC in December. Various Middle Eastern lamb dishes from countless trucks in NYC.
                            12. Beaver tails while skating on Rideau Canal in Ottawa (my original exposure to this treat)
                            13. Giovanni's shrimp truck on Oahu - still dreaming about those shrimp!
                            14. Poutine from Patates Rollant in Trois Rivieres, Quebec.
                            15. Anticuchos and some deep fried dough dessert at a Peruvian festival in Montreal.

                            5 Replies
                            1. re: moh

                              Beaver tails? Did you have nightingale tongues, too? '-D

                              1. re: linguafood

                                Beaver tails are essentially a flat, fried bread (beaver tail shaped) served with cinnamon and sugar or a variety of other toppings.

                              2. re: moh

                                Somehow when I saw the lamb sandwiches at the Jean Talon market, I knew it was you, moh, even before scrolling down the page! I love the merguez sandwiches and fried eperlans from there. And you're lucky to have had fresh, raw abalone from Korea!

                                This is a great list thread that invokes fond memories, as well as gives inspiration on what to look forward to in future trips!

                                Among ones I can recall:
                                - beignets and poboy sandwiches in New Orleans
                                - takoyaki in Osaka, where they make them fresh and you have to endure a long lineup for them
                                - Beard Papa cream puffs in Japan, another excuse to line up!
                                - freshly grilled mochi on a stick in the middle of winter, somewhere in Japan I cannot recall
                                - ice-cream mochi from the vending machines in Japan
                                - hotdogs loaded with all-you-can-stuff condiments, including pickled corn and fried onions, at particular stands in Toronto.
                                - hotdogs in Paris -- in a baguette and very filling! Also, the giant crepes stuffed with spicy beef and egg, in the Marais in Paris
                                - chestnuts roasted in the fire built from giant cans and shopping carts etc., when they are in season in France
                                - hot, stinky deep-fried beancurd, with the proper three sauces, in Hong Kong. In fact, many other street foods in that city, too many to mention -- egg-shaped waffles, mini greasy, chewy siu mai on a stick, and flour crepes filled with a big crunchy, honey-comb-shaped chunk of pulled sugar, to name a few
                                - perfectly hot, crispy and gooey poutine from the truck in Ottawa, off some tourist area. Strangely I couldn't find anything as good in Montreal!

                                Making myself salivate now. I suppose I will not include the ones not really intended for consumption on the street, because there would be many more.

                                1. re: tarteaucitron

                                  More, more, we want more! Poutine, yes! Oyster po' boys, yes!
                                  Fish tacos in California!
                                  Migra tacos in Juarez for breakfast, tamales before bed.

                                  1. re: tarteaucitron

                                    It has been good to see your posts on the board recently Tarteaucitron! I assume all is going well for you!

                                    I do really love the corn relish the Toronto hot dog vendors provide, those dogs should be on my list as well.

                                    I wish I had seen mochi of all sorts as street food. I love mochi, but have only had its various incarnations as restaurant food. Same for beignets and poboys...

                                2. Fish and chips in Britain
                                  BBQ'd corn cobs in Cyprus
                                  Chips with peanut satay sauce in Flemish Belgium
                                  "Stuff" from New York street carts
                                  Roasted chestnuts anywhere
                                  Bratwurst at the Manchester "European Christmas Market"

                                  1. Am I the only one who eats Sabrett's hot dogs with kraut sold at the street carts in NYC? I doubt that I'd eat a hot dog off a cart anywhere else.

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: CindyJ

                                      A 40= year tradition of mine has ti have a hot dog w/ kraut and a brewski on the Staten Island Ferry. I used to treat dates to this in high school. Last summer my son and I had this treat on the way in to Manhatten for breakfast, a noodle shop and more beer for lunch and an expensive nap at Phantom of the Opera w/ my eldest son and his wife afterward.
                                      Holly(eats) is my hero!

                                    2. Ditto the chicken rice in either Singapore or Malaysia. If I'm on a desert island and could choose only one dish, that might be it. Also char kway teow and roti canai. and Singaporean oyster omelets. Oh, and murtabak, both savory and sweet.

                                      In Indonesia, satay (I like Indonesian satay much better than other countries'), gado gado, nasi goreng, bakmi goreng, eis kachang. '
                                      Mexico: tamales, mushroom empanadas, chilaquiles, passionfruit nieves, agua frescas, horchata.
                                      Austria/Germany: heise wurst, naturlich!