First things first. I am an awful cook. I belong on the opposite side of Gordon Ramsey and Paula Deen on the spectrum of the culinary arts.
Upon leaving the U.S.A., I realized that my easy days of running to a McDonalds or Chick Fil A for a meal were coming to an end. Within the first couple of weeks, I struggled to feed myself, because I never learned how to cook. I had gotten so spoiled with fast-food and my parents feeding me.
I’m embarrassed to say, I may have only used a stove top a couple dozen times before coming to Denmark. But I had to start to feed my raging American appetite.
Over the past 3 months of traveling around, I’ve run across many different cultures. A very important component to cultures are the different foods within.
I live in a house with greenkeepers that come from many different countries. Scotland, Ireland, England, Lithuania, Bulgaria, Latvia, and Poland are all homes to the dozen or more greenkeepers living in the housing complex. Therefore, I get a little experience from several different countries every single day.
During my trip to Scotland, my friends, Grant, Jack and Scott, who grew up there insisted I try a few of their favorite foods and drinks.
The most requested items from the guys were Haggis and Black Pudding. When I say Black Pudding, many people may think of a gooey delicious snack, however, it’s actually a “blood sausage” made from pork blood, pork fat, oatmeal, and a few more small ingredients. I will say that I am not a fan of either of the two.
Haggis is another style of “pudding”, but doesn’t come in a sausage form. It’s made from Sheep’s Pluck, which can contain the heart, lungs, liver, and other organs that are normally disposed of. The Scottish people enjoy these traditional foods, because a long time ago before meats were easily available, the Scots would try to use as much of an animal for food as possible to avoid wasting meat.
Along with Scotland, majority of the United Kingdom is pretty crazy over fish and chips. This usually consists of fried cod and French fries.
My Bulgarian house-mate Michail introduced me to Bulgarian cuisine. He made “Musaka”, which consists of mince meat, tomatoes, onions, Bulgarian spices, eggs, yogurt and potatoes.
I thought to myself that since I’m trying foods from different cultures, I should introduce my friends to a typical American meal.
A cheeseburger and French fries would’ve been too stereotypical. After the Europeans joked around with me about drinking Coca Cola (typical American), I decided to make my family’s staple Coca Cola Chicken.
I’m a pretty picky eater, but I enjoyed broadening my horizons in the culinary world. Not everything you try will satisfy your taste, but you’ll never know if you like it without giving it a go.