Pumpkin ravioli with toasted pine nuts, smoked ricotta & balsamic drizzle in Italy.
What true list of favorite foods wouldn’t include at least one meal from Italy? I lived in a tiny mountain town in Northern Italy for 2 years and learned a ton about Italian cuisine (they do so much more than pizza and pasta!). Still the stereotypes are true and the best thing I ate in Italy was pumpkin ravioli with toasted pine nuts, smoked ricotta and balsamic drizzle from a tiny Osteria in my town. I don’t think I’ve ever stopped craving it since.
Pizza with green olives from a little food cart in Jerusalem.
Some of the best food on any trip I’ve ever taken has been the street food, and Jerusalem was no exception. After a day of wandering around Jerusalem and seeing the sights I came across a little old man who was firing pizza on a tiny metal cart. I had a green olive pizza and to this day it remains the best pizza I have ever eaten (and I lived in Italy!).
Aji De Gallina in Peru.
I had the privilege in 2013 of leading an Expedition to Peru. One of the Peruvian volunteer leaders was training to be a chef and he offered to cook a few meals for our team.
As a team the absolute favorite was aji de gallina (though all of the meals were incredibly delicious). When we returned from the Expedition we even had a former YL staff come to our reunion who taught our team to cook aji de gallina. If you get the chance to go to Peru make sure this is on your list of foods to try!
Burmese Rainbow Salad in Oakland.
Being from the Bay Area I come from a foodie’s paradise. San Francisco is full of some of the most delicious meals (and coffee) that one can dream of but when I come home the meal that always tops my list of “must eat while I’m home foods” is the Rainbow Salad from Burma Superstar in Oakland.
After the wait staff effortlessly name off the 22 ingredients in this Burmese noodle salad they effortlessly mix them into a mouth watering delight. If you find yourself in Oakland go here. Trust me on this one.
Mint Tea in Morocco and a Dark Chocolate Chip Cookie in the UK.
When I was living in Germany some friends and I decided to travel to Morocco for Thanksgiving (what’s more American than visiting Northern Africa for Thanksgiving, right?) Marrakesh is a city with some very delicious things but nothing beats the fresh mint tea (and I’m a coffee drinker). Full of leafy mint goodness and a healthy dose of sugar it made a delightful end to a day of wandering the market.
And finally, I don’t know who actually judges the world’s best cookie but I would give the award to Ben’s Cookies in the UK. The dark chocolate chocolate chip cookie is filled with huge chunks of dark chocolate and when warmed it equals melty goodness! It’s not the prettiest of cookies but oh em geez my mouth is watering just thinking about it.