Fun Food Facts From Around the World

Posted by in Fun Food Facts

There is no love sincerer than the love of food.” Oh yes, we really can’t get enough of food, so here is a roundup of fun food facts from around the world that could easily provide you with some travel inspiration…

Spain
Even though today you might think of paella as a traditional seafood dish, this is actually just one of many types of paella. In fact, the original paella was not considered a seafood dish at all as it had chicken, rabbit and pork (and sometimes snails) mixed with the rice.
Another quintessential part of Spanish cuisine, tapas do not refer to a type of food but rather to the way you eat that food. The word “tapas” comes from the Spanish verb tapar, meaning “to cover”. Probably since the original tapas were slices of bread or meat which sherry drinkers in Andalusian taverns used to cover their glasses with between sips to prevent fruit flies getting in. With that hot climate, it’s a small wonder they needed to cover their drinks with something!

Italy
The Margherita pizza was named after Queen Margherita of Savoy, Queen Consort of Italy 1878-1900. According to popular tradition it was created in Naples by chef Raffaele Esposito (of Pizzeria Brandi) and his wife and the pizza was supposed to resemble the colours of the Italian flag: red (tomato), white (mozzarella) and green (basil).
Speaking of pizza, if you order a ‘pepperoni pizza’ in Italy you won’t get what you are used to – in Italian peperoni means bell pepper, so order that and the most you’ll get would be a veggie pizza (still a deliciously spicy, thin-crust pizza loaded with peppers). The pepperoni pizza covered in spicy sausage is an American invention that you won’t really find in a proper Italian establishment.
…and while you are ordering, you might have an issue if you are after a latte too. ‘Latte’ means milk, so ask for that and this is exactly what you are going to get – a glass of milk. The coffee you are used to refer to as latte would be caffellatte or latte macchiato, so order one of those if you really do not fancy an espresso during your travels in Italy.
Finally, did you know that there are more than 600 pasta shapes produced worldwide? And different pasta shapes compliment different sauces – for example, delicate pastas like thin spaghetti should be served with light, thin sauce, while thicker pasta shapes, like fettuccine, work well with heavier ones.

Greece
A fun fact from the ancient Greeks? They believed that horseradish was worth its weight in gold!
ou already know how important olive oil is in Greek cuisine. However, truth is Greece is not the first but the third biggest producer of olive oil in the world only after Italy and Spain! Still, Greek people do consume an average of 26 litres of olive oil each year, which is pretty impressive…

Portugal
There are supposed to be 365 different bacalhau (dried cod) recipes in Portugal – one for every day of the year, while some people even claim there are a 1000 different ways to prepare the beloved Portuguese fish.
You know that Portugal is famous for its outstanding pastries but did you know that many of the country’s pastries were created by nuns in the 18th century? They sold them as a means of supplementing their incomes. This also explains pastry names such as barriga de freira (nun’s belly), papos de anjo (angel’s chests), and toucinho do céu (bacon from heaven)…doesn’t all bacon come from heaven?

Mexico
Contrary to what you might have heard, Mexican food is actually quite healthy as it’s considered to be the perfect blend of all food groups. It is also filled with healthy nutrients and is low in fat and caloric content.
Back in the day (think 1940s up to the 1980s) tortillas were actually canned…well you definitely can’t find them like that in your local supermarket anymore.

Dubai
The Dubai Duty Free is the largest seller of Kit Kats worldwide: approximately one tonne of Kit Kats are sold at Dubai Airport every day. Someone really loves a Kit Kat….
Camel meat is very popular in Dubai and a lot of Emirati dishes include camel as one of their main ingredients. If you are travelling on a budget, you should probably opt for camel too as camel meat is pretty cheap here due to the abundance of camels in the region.

Some quick & sweet ice cream/gelato facts because we simply can’t get enough…
The tallest ice cream cone was over 9ft tall and it was scooped by Mirco Della Vecchia and Andrea Andrighetti in Italy (naturally!).
In Kentucky, it is illegal to carry an ice cream cone in your back pocket.

1 out of 5 people share ice cream with their pet.
Ice cream testers use gold spoons to be able to taste the product 100% without a slight percentage of ‘after-taste’ from typical spoons.
And a little bit extra:

A cluster of bananas is called a ‘hand’ and a single banana is called a ‘finger’.
The largest food item on a menu is one often served for special occasions in the Bedouin tribes of Africa (especially on weddings). They stuff a fish with eggs and put it inside a chicken. The chicken is put inside a sheep, and the sheep is put inside a camel and roasted. So yes, that is a complicated food spin on inception.
The first soup on record is believed to date back to 6000 BC according to archaeological evidence and it was hippopotamus soup…

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