Copyright (c) 2014 Elena Martin
Each cuisine is characterized by the usage of specific ingredients and cooking styles, which are often associated with a culture or region. Broadly speaking, we can divide cuisines into five big categories: African cuisine, Asian cuisine, Oceanian cuisine, Cuisine of the Americas and European cuisine.
In African cuisine, the main ingredients used are grains (such as millet, sorghum and teff), vegetables and beans (okra, cassava, plantains, taro, and yams), fruits, nuts and seeds (coconut, guavas, kola nuts, palm nuts, and sesame seeds), meats, poultry and fish (beef, bushmeat, goat, chicken, Guinea fowl, ostrich, shrimp, smoked and dried fish), eggs and dairy (buttermilk, curds), spices and herbs (chili peppers, gingerroot, curry powder) and some beverages (coconut juice, ginger beer, palm wine).
A typical West African dish is yassa, a spicy food prepared with poultry or fish.
As for Asian cuisine, the main ingredients are rice (brown, basmati or jasmine) or noodles (egg, wheat or rice noodles), sauces (oyster sauce, black bean sauce, chili bean sauce, fish sauce, hoi sin sauce, plum sauce, BBQ sauce, wasabi mustard, curry paste), water chestnuts and bamboo, spices (powdered ginger, turmeric, dried chili seeds and chilies, and five spice powder) and fresh flavorings (garlic, ginger, kaffir lime leaves, lemon grass, coriander and fresh chilies), oils (olive oil, peanut oil, sunflower and sesame) and tofu.
Some typical Asian dishes are spring rolls, sushi and fish balls.
Oceanic cuisine is very influenced by other cuisines through the settlers. Some of the different types of cuisines are the Australian, New Zealand and Tasmanian. Australian cuisine tends to include locally grown vegetables. As for Tasmanian people, they usually consume seafood, such as crayfish, orange roughy, salmon and oysters.
Some of the main products commonly known abroad are kiwifruits (from New Zealand) and Granny Smith apples (Australia).
As for the cuisine of the Americas, it can be subdivided into several categories. The most common product known from Canadian cuisine is maple syrup, but some of the main dishes include poutine, butter tarts, macaroni and cheese. With regard to Mexican food, it is characterized by the usage of corn (tortillas), rice, beans and chili peppers, as well as salsas such as guacamole or pico de gallo. Some of the main dishes of this region are tacos, burritos and fajitas. Some foods in Central American cuisine include maize-based dishes, tortillas, tamales, pupusas, salsas and other accompaniments, such as guacamole, pico de gallo, mole, chimichurri and pebre. For its part, Caribbean dishes usually include tropical fruits (such as mangos, bananas, papayas and avocados), goat or chicken and seafood (shark, crab, lobster and conch).
As for South America, in this region people tend to use fresh fish (such as tuna), seafood (crab, lobster, and Antarctic krill), lamb and venison, tropical fruits, potatoes, and quinoa. One of the most traditional dishes is the feijoada, from Brazil.
In the case of Europe, this type of cuisine includes different cooking styles, such as British, French, German, Greek, Italian and Spanish cuisine, among others. Each region has its own typical ingredients and recipes but, generally speaking, this type of food is also called Continental cuisine.
Common European foods include dairy products such as cheese, wheat-flour bread, pasta and potatoes. Some of the main and most common European dishes are roasted beef, lasagna hot dog, chicken kiev, bouillabaisse and tapas.
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At www.thebestspanishrecipes.com you will find the best recipes of Spain. Have a look at this article about the main foods, cuisine and recipes around the world and enjoy the taste of each continent.
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