As Singaporeans gathered in throngs of red and white yesterday, we have so much to be proud of as a nation. From a fishing village to a successful global city, Singapore is a melting pot of cultures and this notion also translates to our local delicacies which is well-loved by many and will be a main-stay for decades to come.
As we celebrate our nation’s birthday, and not forgetting our love of food, let’s look at other nations that share the same jubilation this month while indulging in their own national “chicken rice” and “char kway teow” dishes.
- Switzerland, 1 August
Switzerland’s National Day is celebrated by rifle shooting tournaments and a paper lantern parade – similar to some of our very own ‘Chingay’ floats. Their national dish, ‘raclette’, comprises of a mouth-watering scene of bubbling melting cheese being scraped off onto cut and roasted seasoned potatoes, a definite must-try for cheese lovers out there.
- South Korea, 15 August
Did you know that the venerable ‘kimchi’ comes in many variations and is affected by the types of spices and cabbages that are used to give it that signature tangy, sweet, and spicy flavour? Don’t forget to try this Korean staple and its diverse range of selection when you next drop by to Korea.
- Indonesia, 17 August
Indonesia’s traditional ‘tumpeng’ is not only a dish but is a symbol of gratefulness and respect. It is commonly used to celebrate important occasions as a symbol of gratitude. The rice is formed into a cone shape to symbolically represent the volcanos and mountains that bring fertile volcanic soil and an abundance of rainfall.
- Cook Islands, New Zealand Territories, 4 August
Dish: Ika Mata
3,233 kilometres away from New Zealand lies the Cook Islands territories that’s filled with old mythology surrounding their mysterious islands. Due to their island’s location and produce, one of the beloved dishes is ‘ika mata’. Slightly similar to Singapore’s ‘yu sheng’, this dish comprises of seasoned raw fish and coconut cream as coconuts and fresh seafood come in natural abundance.
- Ecuador, 10 August
Wait! Is that a dead rat on the plate of food? Ecuador’s national dish ‘cuy’ is a guinea pig fried to a crisp. While many of us adore our cuddly furry friends, the Ecuadorian people serve ‘cuy’ as an honorary gesture and is usually reserved for major events such as weddings and their National day.
At the end of the day, our hearts and tummies still go out to our local dishes – there’s nothing quite like it! However, if you are up for an adventurous time searching for unique national dishes around the world, look no further as ZUJI has the perfect flights to get you started!
Happy National Day!
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