Say “yogurt” and most people either think of the soupy, sugary American stuff or wonderfully thick, fatty Greek yogurt. Say “yoghurt” and most people think you’re English. But say “skyr” and now you’re talking about the wonderful almost-yogurt-but-mmmm-different.
There’s a reason soups aren’t well represented here, and it’s because no matter how rich and delicious your tonkatsu broth, it will always be better with noodles, eggs, veggies, etc. But vichysoisse is basically “mashed potato: the soup,” with chicken broth added, and adding chicken broth makes almost anything tastier. The fact that it’s pureed into a perfectly consistent slurry that can be slurped on a cold football Sunday makes it perfect and also way more blue collar than you’d expect of anything with a three-syllable French name.
Why isn’t this everywhere? Why is it only popular among Russians and weightlifters? And presumably all the Russian weightlifters? Why are we drinking orange juice for breakfast when we could be facing the day with a belly full of cherry cheer? These are the important questions the candidates should be addressing.
Matcha ice cream
Ice cream is supposed to be sweet. Or maybe some weird, savory flavor like garlic or lobster that you can only get at food festivals, and you know it’s going to suck but you try it anyway and yeah, you guess it’s okay. So what’s this... herbal flavor? Is it that surprising that green tea’s Super-Saiyan form, in addition to being deliciously earthy amid the creamy cold, leaves your mouth tasting cleaner than before you ate it? Most desserts can’t say that. Because if your food could talk, it would be horrifying.
Australians know what’s up. You might be hard-pressed to find the down-under delicacy in the U.S. without ordering a pricey import from Amazon... and even then you might end up with a spice mixture which, while tasty (hooray for turmeric!) doesn’t contain any actual chicken. The good news is you can make your own as simply as baking chicken. Roasted chicken skin is dehydrated on low heat, then ground up with a mix of spices that tastes like a cheat code to food. If you thought Adobo was good stuff to shake on food, try the Australian equivalent. The real challenge is not just licking the stuff off your finger as a snack like you’re the world’s fattest deer.
There’s a reason people put cinnamon on applesauce, and there’s an even better reason they cut out the middleman to infuse it in the apple itself. Who needs all that laborious stirring, scraping, and spooning? Instead, toss cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and allspice into a pot and simmer some apple cider till the sugars caramelize. What comes out is a stickier, darker, delicious flavor that you have to mete out slowly, before you realize you’ve drank the equivalent of 19 caramel apples.
The only thing that ties the many, many varieties of mole together is the use of chili peppers. From there, you roast and grind any damn spice or flavoring you think would be awesome, and make a hearty powder or hardy paste. However, many of them use chocolate, and this is the flavor you’re chasing. The tongue almost doesn’t know how to react when it encounters the familiar alkaline taste of chocolate minus all the sugar that rides shotgun with it. What you get is a sauce that’s bitter, meaty, beautiful, and best of all: chocolate for dinner. For best results eat it on top of other food instead of scooping it out of a bowl with your fingers, unable to stop yourself even though your fiancée is watching, because it’s so, so good.
Rendang uses a mix of (tasty) antibacterial ingredients, salt, and slow cooking in coconut milk to preserve beef (although nobody can keep their hands off it long enough to test its longevity). The result is a unique artifact compared to the salt-based extension of shelf life obtained by hanging a cut to cure slowly for weeks--or for a day, if you're making jerky. As the meat absorbs the milk, which steams away around it, it becomes a mixture of fats and deeply ingrained spices in one muscular morsel. It’s addictive, so even though the flavors of the recipe vary widely (and sumptuously), this is one entry that definitely deserves to be here for the texture side of the taste.
It’s baffling why this addictive Italian spread isn’t everywhere. Everyone loves pistachios. Hell, even people with nut allergies. Pistachios are the best nut, end of story. So when Italy turned them into a sweet paste a little bit runnier than the (much more available) pistachio butter that you might readily compare to a peanut butter, it struck gold. Spread this on a cracker, on bread, or dip cheese or veggies in it. It is like nothing you’ve ever had before or since.