When it comes to the winter holidays, food traditions are an important part the celebrations in countries around the world, even if the foods are different from country to country. For some a festive meal wouldn’t be complete without fried chicken, fruit cake or salted cod. Depending on where you grew up, and where you live now, the seasonal delicacies that grace your table may be sweet, savoury, or a little bit of everything in-between.
Let’s take a look at different Christmas food traditions around the world.
1. England’s Christmas Pudding
This famous dish has many names. Whether you call it figgy pudding, plum pudding, ‘pud’ or Christmas pudding, this dessert is a key Christmas tradition in England, Ireland and also some parts of the US. Despite its name, plum pudding doesn’t actually include plums. Pre-Victorian era, ‘plums’ referred to what we now call raisins, and because dried fruits are an important part of this pudding, it is how it earned its name.
2. Tamales Of Costa Rica
In Costa Rica, making tamales is a Christmas tradition and every family has their own ‘secret’ recipe. The basis of Tomales is corn dough, wrapped in a banana leaf or corn husk, and then steamed. Some are stuffed with pork, and some with beef or chicken. Other foods that may be a part of the filling are garlic, onion, potatoes, or raisins.
3. Latkes Of Israel
Since the Middle Ages, latkes in some form or another have been an important part of Hanukkah tradition. Latkes are fried potato pancakes are cooked in oil. This recognizes that the Second Temple kept the Menorah burning with oil for eight days. Other dishes enjoyed as a part of this tradition include fried donuts and fritters. Hanukkah gelt, small chocolate coins, are given to children by relatives.
4. Germany’s Christmas Goose
The German Christmas feast is historically centred around the Weihnachtsgans, the Christmas goose. A tradition dating back to the Middle Ages, eating goose was originally tied to St. Martin’s Day, but eventually became a part of the Christmas meal. Often stuffed with apples, chestnuts, onions, and prunes, then spiced with mugwort and marjoram, the goose is served alongside red cabbage, dumplings, gravy and dry fruits.
5. Christmas Fried Chicken In Japan
In Japan, the Christmas season is the most wonderful time of the year for Kentucky Fried Chicken, or KFC, a fast-food chain. Because about 3.6 million Japanese families eat KFC on Christmas Eve, they often need to reserve their meal up to two months in advance. During the 1970s, KFC put together a holiday party bucket and behind it, a brilliant marketing plan. At the time, Japan didn’t have many Christmas traditions. KFC filled that void by telling consumers “here is something that you should do on Christmas”. The trend caught on quickly.
6. Panettone Of Italy
Italy has numerous regional traditions when it comes to Christmas dinner. In some parts of Italy, they celebrate with The Feast of the Seven Fishes. This meal includes seven different fish prepared in seven different ways. More often than not, two of the featured items are baccala (salted cod) and calamari. In other areas, they eat roasted lamb, or poultry roasted or boiled and seasoned with sauce.
7. Cookies Of Poland
Another country with cookies on the menu when it comes to holiday season in Poland. Additionally there’s a special cookie- Kołaczki is a flaky, jelly-filled confection, with dough often made with sour cream or cream cheese. These fold-over style cookies come with a variety of fillings. If the standard apricot or raspberry doesn’t do it for you, you can also try poppyseed, nuts, or sweet cheese. They’re topped with confectioners sugar immediately before serving.
8. Sweden’s Saffron Buns
Saffron buns are sweet and often yellow in color (due to the saffron, of course!). They are shaped into an “S” and then baked into their final buttery form. They’re served to the family by the oldest daughter, by tradition, but that shouldn’t stop you from trying your hand at making them, and most importantly, enjoying the end product. Some food traditions have a deeper meaning than just its taste.
We certainly hope that you’ve enjoyed the article, For more related content read this – 8 Insanely Cool Christmas Gifts Ideas This Season
Best Mughlai Eateries In Nizamuddin, Delhi
Delhi has a vast history with street food that goes back hundreds of years. The capital city of India was a heavenly abode for all food lovers, from the lanes of Chandni Chowk to the streets of Hauz Khas. There is a common belief that the best street food is located in Purani Dilli. However, long before the streets of Old Delhi, lies Hazrat Nizamuddin, a much wider lane that is less noisy and overcrowded at all times. Also, it is a place that houses the famous Nizamuddin Dargah, where eternal peace can be found. Not only that, Nizamuddin is also famous for its relevance to the food and architecture of Mughals. Moreover, many Bollywood films have been shot in these best Mughlai eateries.
Ghalib Kebab Corner
This 40-year-old restaurant is situated near Dargah and attracts many food lovers. Try their shami kebab, chicken kebab, and mutton tikka and be certain you’ve tried one of the best kebabs. Within your mouth, the crispy kebabs will melt as soon as you take the first slice.
One of the most well-known locations in Nizamuddin is the notorious Hussaini Hotel. Featured in Rockstar, the famous Hindi film, this place has one of the best Nihari and Tandoori Rotis at very cheap prices, too. They serve a special biryani which is served every Thursday and Saturday. Moreover, it is one of the best Mughlai eateries in town.
Kit Care Kebab Corner
You must visit this spot, which smells of kebabs, for delicious and melt-in-your-mouth snacks. The wide range of the menu provides you with a lot of choices to choose from. Further, don’t be disappointed if you are a vegetarian, as it also has some excellent vegetarian kebabs.
If you are a hygiene freak and can not afford to pose a danger to your health with eateries on the roadside, head to Al-Quresh to give you safe dining experience. This air-conditioned restaurant has a proper seating arrangement for fine dining. Also, it is best known for its kormas and gravy dishes.
Popularly known as ZeN, this restaurant has a variety of kebabs and is run by 11 women. All these women are from Nizamuddin Basti, which has a culinary heritage and is 700 years old. They also have a good range for all the vegetarians with paneer tikka, soya kebab and Hara Bhara kebab.
Even if you are not a sweet dish enthusiast or a dessert guy, the kheer from Nasir is a must-try for all. The sweet dishes made in this shop can not be found anywhere else. Moreover, they will leave a long-lasting impression on your taste buds, served in little earthen pots.
Manpasand Nahari Roti Wale
This popular restaurant specialises in Nihari, Nalli Nihari. Also, Khameeri Rotis and Mughal dishes as well! The restaurant serves the finest and authentic Mughlai dishes and has to be a visited one while you are Nizamuddin.
Pizza: The Psychology & Chemistry Behind Why People Love It
Pizza toppings are also packed with a compound called glutamate, which can be found in the tomatoes, cheese, pepperoni and sausage. When glutamate hits our tongues, it tells our brains to get excited — and to crave more of it. This compound actually causes our mouths to water in anticipation of the next bite.
Then there are the combinations of ingredients. Cheese and tomato sauce are like a perfect pairing. On their own, they taste pretty good. But according to culinary scientists, they contain flavor compounds that taste even better when eaten together.
The Chemistry Behind It
Another quality of pizza that makes it so delicious: Its ingredients become brown while cooking in the oven. Foods turn brown and crispy when we cook them because of two chemical reactions.
The first is called caramelization, which happens when the sugars in a food become brown. Most foods contain at least some sugar; once foods are between 230 degrees and 320 degrees, their sugars begin to turn brown. Caramel is made from several thousand compounds, making it one of the most complex food products. On a pizza, ingredients such as onions and tomatoes become caramelized during baking, making them rich, sweet and flavorful. That brown and crispy crust is also the result of the dough caramelizing.
The Maillard Reaction (Cont. Of The Chemistry Behind It)
The Maillard reaction occurs when the amino acids in high-protein foods such as cheese and pepperoni react with the sugars in those foods when heated. Pepperoni that becomes crispy with curled edges, and cheese that browns and bubbles, are examples of the Maillard reaction. With bread, cheese and tomato sauce as its base, pizza might seem like a simple food. It isn’t. And the next time you’re about to devour a slice, you’ll be able to appreciate all of the elements of pizza that excite our brains, thrill our taste buds and cause our mouths to water.
Although you probably won’t be out on the streets hustling for a stuffed crust pepperoni, a recent study has found that pizza has some very addictive properties.
The University of Michigan study, published in the US National Library of Medicine, examined which foods caused people to display addictive tendencies. Using a sample of 504 students, the study found that pizza came out on top (perhaps unsurprisingly).
According to the study, the highly processed foods loaded with sugars and fats can cause changes in the dopamine system – involved in reward and pleasure – akin to drug abuse.
They also pointed to another study that showed that “rats maintained on a diet of highly processed foods, such as cheesecake, exhibit downregulation in the dopamine system that also occurs in response to drugs of abuse.”
The other reason why pizza seems to be so addictive might be even simpler: cheese.
The crave-inducing properties of cheese come from an ingredient called casein, a protein found in all milk products. When we digest this protein, it releases casomorphins which stimulate opioid receptors, the receptors involved in pain control, reward and addiction.
So, while this might not make you feel better when you covered in crust crumbs embarking on a pizza come down, at least you know the science behind your addiction.
Also read- How to make the best pizza at home!
And watch- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tOkCgAwhh9U
How Cutting Down On Junk Food Is Sustainable
Looking for a new reason to cut down on junk food? Besides the obvious health-related benefits, there’s a recent study that junk food makes up a significant proportion of food-related environmental impacts. It was found that for each household, a massive portion that is to say almost 33-39% of water use, energy use, greenhouse gas emissions and land use went into junk food.
The fast-food industry are catastrophically affecting global warming. Given its high dependence on natural resources such as water, land and feed for livestock, the animal agriculture involved in creating fast food products is a sizable contributor to environmental issues.
What is Junk Food?
What exactly are the criteria for the classification of food? Well. food items and drinks not necessary to provide the nutrients with the body needs, but that may add variety. Many of these are high in saturated fats, sugars, salt and/or alcohol. By contrast, it is a list of those food items which does not belong to the core food groups. Fruits, vegetables, cereals, legumes, nuts and seeds, dairy and unprocessed meat constitute the core food group.
Why Is Junk Food A Problem?
In a warming world with a growing population and dwindling resources, we can no longer afford junk food consumption that harms both our own and the planet’s health. Although the topic of sustainable diets is becoming more popular, the debate and proposed policies have not sufficiently questioned the proliferation of junk food products that use scarce resources to produce empty calories.
Sustainability And Us
Animal-derived foods generally have bigger total environmental footprints than plant foods. This is because of the significant amounts of land, water and feed required by livestock and the methane released by ruminants. Many recommendations to achieve healthy and sustainable diets have therefore justifiably focused on the need to reduce meat and animal-derived product consumption. Going vegan is a great option. But for baby steps going on a vegetarian diet is a good too.
How Do We Modify Our Consumption?
Diets such as the Mediterranean, rich in vegetables, fruit, legumes and whole grains, seem to achieve the right balance between health and sustainability. A key characteristic of the traditional Mediterranean diet is the limited amount of junk or unhealthy food. We all are by now aware of the fires that were intended at increasing grasslands for the beef industry. Why not cut down on meat and eat more of non-processed local green food? Think about it.
What Can Government Do?
The solution should ultimately tackle the heart of the problem, which is why we over-consume these foods in the first place. Encouraging dietary shifts away from junk foods is challenging because of their cheapness, taste and convenience. Junk food is also promoted to consumers for profit. Food producers should ultimately be held responsible for the proliferation of cheap junk food. We need to encourage divestment away from unhealthy, unsustainable products. It should be through regulation and public pressure, following the example of measures to address climate change.
For more, read- Easy Indian Dry Aloo Recipes That You Must Try
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