What is loved by Aussies young and old, and most likely have not been tasted by non-Australians? Have you ever heard of Vegemite? I haven’t until I became close to an Australian family in Tokyo. Along with learning varied and colorful Aussie slang, I was introduced to Vegemite. What is Vegemite and how did it sneak into every Australian’s pantry?
Back in the early 1900s, a man was given the task to come up with a marketable way to utilize the left over yeast being dumped by breweries. Concentrating the clear liquid extract and blending with salt, celery and onion extract formed a sticky black paste. Marketing this unattractive paste as a must-have was not that easy. After much effort to give out coupons, declaring Vegemite as a rich source for vitamin B and giving them out as army rations, by the end of the 1940s Vegemite had become a household name in Australia. For more details about the history of Vegemite, see this article.
So what does it taste like? Well, watch this video where American kids see and taste Vegemite for the first time in their life. They will describe the taste for you!
For recipes, you can refer to the above diagram. I would highly recommend you stick to the above recipe for beginners, it is a matter of your survival. Believe me.
In honor of the historical election in Myanmar yesterday, let’s talk about the most popular dish in Myanmar, Mohinga. Mohinga is a breakfast noodle soup dish full of sophisticated flavors and simple preparation. Uniquely Myanmar, yet obvious influence from all the different ethnic groups in and around the country. When traveling across SouthEast Asia, you will no doubt notice that breakfast noodle soups are a staple local food in almost every country including China, Laos, Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam and Myanmar. If you see a long line at a local street vendor early in the morning, that is where you should experience your own soup noodle breakfast experience. The stall will likely be lined with colorful and endless varieties of condiments.
Here is a fantastic and doable recipe for Mohinga. Don’t let the fish stock scare you away from this recipe, since lemongrass, turmeric, ginger and shallot all come together to make this soup so flavorful and not fishy at all.
I have noticed that my taste palate has definitely changed through my travels, the sophisticated mixture of spices and herbs found in Asian cuisines have definitely made me crave strong flavors wherever I go. That is not limited to my taste buds. The constant attack of my senses from the noise, smells, sights and personalities definitely make you wanting more.
Start your own experience of color and variety you can taste in your bowl with Mohinga!
Picture taken from the meemalee website.
Unicultural team and trainers, sharing our views and experiences on everything cultural.