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Nine Cuisines, One Dish Each

The object here is to list your favorite single dish for each of the national/regional cuisines listed below. And please, let us not bicker and aaaaargue over the definition of American cuisine or whether or not kung pao chicken is a proper Chinese dish. This is for fun.

1. Italian: capellini with a sauce of tomato, bacon, portabella mushrooms, parsley and white wine

2. Indian: murg methi (chicken with fenugreek)

3. Mexican: enchiladas Suizas (chicken enchiladas in a cream-and-Swiss cheese sauce)

4. Chinese: kung pao chicken (lots of hot pepper and toasted peanuts)

5. Thai: gai ga pao (chicken with mint and loads of diced Thai pepper)

6. French: button mushrooms sauteed in butter, white wine and garlic

7. American: New York strip with a compound butter of thyme and lemon

8. Middle Eastern: chicken couscous (with lots of harissa)

9. Eastern European/Russian: chicken Kiev

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  1. With the caveat that I change my mind about this stuff several times a day:

    1. Italian: eggplant parmesan

    2. Indian: naan

    3. Mexican: chile rellenos

    4. Chinese: shrimp rice roll

    5. Thai: som tom poo plara

    6. French: vichyssoise

    7. American: macaroni & cheese

    8. Middle Eastern: falafel

    9. Eastern European/Russian: pierogi with sauerkraut & mushroom

    1. Like small h, this is also subject to change:

      Italian -- pasta with fruits of the sea
      Indian -- samosa chat made with freshly fried samosas (none of that microwaved crap)
      Mexican -- duck in pumpkinseed mole
      Chinese -- mabo tofu with lots of sichuan peppercorns
      Thai -- fish paste covered egg yolks with green curry
      French -- Bouchon's quiche lorraine -- different because of the height; custard quivers and stays moist (gee, kind of sounds dirty as I'm writing it)
      American -- pub style burger cooked medium rare with tallow-fried french fries
      Middle Eastern -- eggplant napoleon from Tanoreen; http://www.flickr.com/photos/37601286...
      Eastern European -- papanasi

      1. You can’t remotely IMAGINE how difficult it is for me to choose just one dish, since I love so many & cook so many, so I’ve just randomly picked my favorites. None of them are “hands down”.

        1. Italian: Baby Calamari Fra Diavolo over Pasta

        2. Indian: Anything “Vindaloo”

        3. Mexican: Enchiladas Suizas (chicken enchiladas topped with cheese (white cheddar or Monterey Jack preferred, green tomatillo sauce, & sour cream)

        4. Chinese: Szechuan Seafood HotPot

        5. Thai: Any spicy curry that doesn’t include coconut milk – lol!

        6. French: Coq au Vin

        7. American: Any cut of steak or great burger that’s tender, flavorful, & perfectly cooked

        8. Middle Eastern: Any dish that isn’t overloaded with what I consider “sweet baking spices. Am not a fan of lots of cinnamon, clove, etc., etc. Other than that – I’m game!

        9. Eastern European/Russian: My own version of Hungarian Goulash, which I make in honor of the late great Bela Lugosi’s birthday every year – lol!

        1. 1. Italian: winter meatballs and savoy cabbage

          2. Indian: spicy lamb sausage shish kebab cooked in tandoor

          3. Mexican: Oaxacan mole with chicken enchiladas

          4. Chinese: kung pao chicken (scorched chilies and fried peanuts)

          5. Thai: basil chicken

          6. French: grilled veal chops with demi glace and morrel mushrooms

          7. American: bbq shrimp

          8. Middle Eastern: kofta kabob

          9. Eastern European/Russian: potato pancake rolled up with beef goulash inside

          1. 1. Italian: Spaghettini Aglio Olio (Garlic and Oil).. always my favorite!

            2. Indian: Lamb Baida Roti (w/the mint, cilantro chutney)

            3. Mexican: Tacos Arabes

            4. Chinese: Chinese Brisket and Turnip Stew

            5. Thai: Satay (really not into Thai)

            6. French: Salade Nicoise

            7. American: Joe's Special (a San Francisco treat!)

            8. Middle Eastern: Kibbeh (the raw version)

            9. Eastern European/Russian: Sarma (Serbian style)

            2 Replies
            1. re: arktos

              You've lost me on Tacos Arabes and Joe's Special.

              A description please?

              1. re: Perilagu Khan

                Tacos Arabes- Are Mexican 'Arab-style' tacos. Originally Puebla street-food they've become very popular and have spread to the U.S. It's marinated roasted pork loin thats cut shawarma rotisserie-style. They're wrapped in a thin pita or flour tortilla and always have a chipotle-garlic sauce and a slice of lime. Sometimes stringy white cheese is added. And they're big!!

                Joe's Special- This is an old San Francisco dish that's origins go way back into obscurity. It's basically a pan-fried scramble of ground beef, chopped onion, spinach and eggs with oregano, a few drops of Worcestershire sauce and Tabasco. Parmesan cheese is usually sprinkled on top. Delicious, cheap and easy to make.. I make it every month.