Celebrate Life: An Asian Food Tour After the Pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic stopped a lot of travel all over the world. But it will be over one day and there is no better way to celebrate it than sampling some of the world’s best cuisines while on a trip. While there are different types of cuisines available, a good choice for a post-COVID food destination is Asia. Some unique dishes will excite your taste buds.

Here are some choice meals that you should try:

Thai Rice Salad

If you are vegetarian or vegan, then Asia has many meals to offer you. One of the best is from Thailand and it is a salad based around rice. Locally known as Khao yam, it sounds strange considering rice is not often thought of as part of a salad, but it does manage to bring all the components together. While pretty simple in appearance, it can get fancy with the right ingredients, something which Thailand has dozens of, ranging from chillis to lemongrass.

A popular variation of it is the rainbow rice salad that uses different coloured rice and a wide array of herbs and vegetables to create a feast for the eyes and tongue. There are even versions with shrimp and fish available to those who are not strict vegetarians.

Xiao Long Bao

Xiao long bao

Various countries in the region owe a few of their dishes to China. Dimsum is a culinary tradition that is for those light snacks that you eat to keep hunger away until the next meal. It can also be a nice appetizer for larger meals. While many dimsum dishes catch people’s fancy, one of the best is xiao long bao. The special thing about this dumpling is that it has a soupy interior. When you bite into it, the hot liquid splashes into your mouth along with a mouthful of meat and dough. The sensation is incredible.

The great thing about this particular dimsum dish is that it appears in multiple countries, from humble Taiwan to sophisticated Hong Kong. Look around for local variations to try them out.

Korean Garlic Chicken

Fried chicken is a popular dish all over the world. It can be surprising how many variations there can be of such a simple dish. One of the tastier versions available in Asia is the Korean-style garlic chicken. What makes it good is the combination of cooking techniques and its saucy coating.

For one, Korean fried chicken is deep-fried twice. The first fry is at a low temperature so that it cooks the chicken while keeping the inside juicy. The next dip creates a hard and crunchy exterior. The garlic sauce, which is usually mixed with soy sauce and corn starch, is sticky and spicy. This is the perfect drinking meal. You can find these at drinking spots paired with alcohol to wash the spice down.

Singaporean Chilli Crab

A signature dish of the city-state, chilli crab is a dish you cannot miss. Usually, crabs are steamed because of the hard shell. But in Singapore, the crab is stir-fried in a tomato and chilli gravy with some beaten eggs. It delivers a delightfully spicy kick. Developed in 1956, it has become a popular dish in the city.

There are hotels near the Singapore airport that serve this dish, but for the authentic experience, you should try it out in the various hawker stations and street restaurants. While the crab is great, the real star is the flavourful sauce, which diners scoop up with fried mantou, a Chinese rice bun variant.

Hong Kong Egg Tarts

Besides the main dishes, you should also sample some of the available desserts. One great example of an Asian dessert that you shouldn’t miss is the egg tart from Hong Kong. While other parts of China have something similar, Hong Kong’s bakeries refined this simple pastry to its best version. Instead of the usual flaky puff pastry crust, the custard is served on a shortcut pastry. The buttery goodness that this delivers is noticeable. This is thanks to the region’s history as a former British colony. You can easily get this particular type of egg tart at any Hong Kong food stall.

After the pandemic, celebrating life can be a wonderful experience. These dishes are just some of the offerings that an Asian trip can offer you. Look for other meals that you might want to try on your food travel in Asia.

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