words Alexa Wang
Credit: Kim van Vuuren Via Pexels
If you were to lay all the world’s dishes on a buffet line, it would probably stretch well into outer space. Yet, the average person interacts with only a tiny fraction of those flavours. It’s understandable: you find something you like to eat, and return to it as a beacon of comfort and safety.
But broadening your palate to include new flavours and cuisines has wide-ranging benefits. For starters, it makes life more interesting (a literal interpretation of the adage, “variety is the spice of life”). Secondly, it diversifies the nutritional profile of your food, allowing you to extract vitamins and nutrients from several sources.
And finally, broadening your palate connects you to people. Foodways are a roadmap for understanding cultures across the world, affording you a glimpse into the lives and traditions of fellow humans. And at a community level, ordering food from local delivery restaurants strengthens local businesses and enriches the community.
Now, that’s why you should broaden your palate – but how do you go about doing it? Here are a few tips for eating outside the box.
Designate a Delivery Day of the Week
You can’t expect to experience all the world’s culinary offerings from your home kitchen. Most people just don’t have the range of techniques and access to ingredients required to cook, say, Ethiopian and German food in the same week.
Instead, designate a day of the week as “delivery day,” where you give yourself the evening off cooking and order food from a new part of the world. Look for a food delivery platform like getREEF that emphasizes global flavours and local restaurants. They deliver food fast (30 minutes or less) without the service fees you pay on other delivery apps. Importantly, they’re also dedicated to strengthening local communities, which is a critical part of diversifying your palate.
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Break out the World Map
Not sure where to start on your grand culinary adventure? Break out a map for inspiration. Every single country on that map enjoys a distinct foodway of unique ingredient combinations and techniques. Pick a country, then research some of their national dishes.
Skim your finger over Southeast Asia to land on the fiery “fish amok” of Cambodia or “beef rendang” of Indonesia. Throw a dart at South America to discover Venezuelan “arepas” or Peruvian “ceviche.” Then, either order a fast and fresh delivery from getREEF or try your hand in the kitchen.
Take the “Flight” Approach
People traditionally associate flights with beer. They refer to a line of small tasting glasses you get at breweries or pubs, which allow you to sample the range of offers rather than committing to one style. Why not apply that principle to food?
Order several small plates from local delivery kitchens for a global tasting flight. Sampling several cuisines in one meal can be a great way to compare and contrast different flavours and techniques. If you’re feeling bold (and have an evening free), you can even make a tapas-style meal yourself, drawing inspiration from each continent.
In summary, broadening your palate spices up your life, diversifies your diet and connects you to your local and global community. To widen your tastes, try supporting local delivery kitchens, researching global cuisines and taking a sampling approach to dinner.