Shane Mitchell's 13 Dishes Worth Traveling For
Shane Mitchell's 13 Dishes Worth Traveling For
Far Afield is F&W’s new favorite dose of escapism as the dark winter months take hold. But Shane Mitchell, veteran traveler, has had more amazing food experiences than could fit in one book. She told us about the most memorable meals she’s encountered—from simple fritters in Kenya to a sophisticated cocktail in Peru, plus an Australian fast food she describes as the “weirdest thing I’ve ever eaten.”
After salivating over these (mostly) gorgeous dishes, read about Shane’s experience writing and eating her way through the book. —Hannah Walhout
Image reprinted from FAR AFIELD Copyright © 2016 by Shane Mitchell. Photography copyright © 2016 by James Fisher. Published by Ten Speed Press, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC.
"Grilled squid in a vinegar-chili sauce, in Thailand, on a remote beach facing the Andaman sea."
Pla Muek Yang (ปลาหมึกย่าง) is a favorite street food in Thailand. The squid is usually marinated, skewered, and grilled over charcoal—finished with spicy, tangy sauce or fish sauce with peanuts and cilantro.
"Cardamom fritters—mandazi—in Mombasa Old Town."
"Samaki wa kupaka, snapper in tamarind curry, grilled by Swahili Fishermen on Manda Toto Island."
"I never liked okra until I discovered this preparation in Rajasthan: bhindi masala, okra in a spicy tomato sauce."
"In Udaipur, golgappa—a classic street snack."
Golgappa (गोलगप्पा) are a mainstay of India’s chaat tradition, and not just in Udaipur—these savory snacks are found at food carts, market stalls, and roadside stands across the country. Known as panipuri in other regions, these deep-fried orbs of unleavened dough are filled with a sour-spicy-sweet mixture of potatoes, veggies, tamarind, and spices. Eat one whole after dunking it in minty, tangy puri (“water”).
"Goat stew with mild Kashmiri chiles in the Thar Desert. So elegant—a favorite of rajahs and Rabari tribal herders."
"Smoked lamb on scorched flatkökur bread, smeared with the incredible local butter, in the highlands of Iceland."
Hangikjöt, or “hung meat,” is an Icelandic holiday staple that can also be made with mutton or horse. If wood is scarce, people smoke the meat over burning sheep dung! Eat it with bread and butter, or in a traditional Christmas preparation with potatoes and uppstúfur, a béchamel-type sauce.
"Arctic char fish chowder in the Westman Islands of Iceland."
This catch-all stew, simply called fiskisúpa ("fish soup"), is ubiquitous in the seafood-heavy Icelandic diet. Everyone has their own recipe—some add tomatoes, some don’t. Some go heavy on the cream, others keep it light. And the fish? Char, cod, haddock, salmon, halibut, you name it. Find Shane’s version in the book.
"Loco moco at Hawaiian Style Cafe in Waimea, on the Big Island."
Hawaii’s state dish, loco moco is a perfect blend of the cultural influences that have shaped the islands. The recipe is simple: a bed of white rice, topped with a hamburger and fried eggs, and smothered with gravy. This Japanese-American hybrid dish is occasionally supplemented with Portuguese sausage, a descendant of the linguiça brought by Portuguese sugarcane plantation workers in the late 19th century.
"Chilcano de rosas, made with rosewater. Lima."
The chilcano is a staple Peruvian cocktail: pisco, citrus (often lime), and soda (typically ginger ale). But bartenders across the country get creative with this old classic, especially during the annual Chilcano Week, incorporating endless combinations of herbs, aromatics, and sour fruits. Mix up this rose version using Shane's recipe, in the book.
"Lomo saltado in Cusco."
This beloved dish—roughly, “beef stir fry”—is part of Peru’s chifa culinary tradition. When immigrants from southern China began settling in Peru in the late 19th century, their Cantonese cuisine quickly blended with traditional Peruvian ingredients and preparations. Here, marinated sirloin is cooked with onions, tomatoes, and Peruvian papas fritas, and served over Chinese white rice. Find Shane's version in the book.
"Yuzugoma citrus pot at Yagyu-no-Sho ryokan, on Japan’s Izu Peninsula."
Yuzu (ゆず) is an aromatic citrus whose flavor is integrated into many Japanese dishes, including condiments like ponzu and yuzu kosho. Yuzugoma marries the flavor of the fruit with sesame for a sweet and savory effect.
"Chiko Rolls in Warmun, in the Kimberley region of Northern Australia—weirdest thing I've ever eaten."
An eggy pastry tube filled with cabbage, barley, beef, and aromatic vegetables, this deep-fried baton has been a household name in Australia since the 1950s. The name is adapted from the product’s original label, the “Chicken Roll” (nevermind that chicken has never been involved in the recipe). Chiko Rolls’ origin story involves a Chinese restaurant, a soccer game, and one man’s quest to make a more durable spring roll for rowdy sports fans.