Marshall Islands - Fish wrapped in bacon
We kick off this week's set of dishes with a self explanatory one. Marshall Island's "Fish wrapped in bacon" consists, unsurprisingly, of fish wrapped in bacon. The fish is seasoned first, at least, with lemon zest and rosemary, then rolled in rashers of bacon, cooked, and served with an equally simple sauce. This consists of mayonnaise and lemon juice, making a thin, tangy sauce that tasted surprisingly flavourful. This dish is regularly served with asparagus, but we're getting into winter now here in the UK, which is not exactly peak asparagus season, so I served with courgette instead (not pictured).
Mauritania - Thiéboudienne
Recipe from http://q-zine.blogspot.com/2016/01/mauritania-thieboudienne-fish-with-rice.html
After my last encounter with Thieboudienne (see Senegal - https://www.labstoladles.com/post/around-the-world-in-eaty-days-86-90 ), I wasn't too excited by the prospects of Mauritania's national dish. I was, however, very pleasantly surprised by this version. I honestly think the main reason for this was simply just the cooking techniques - whilst Senegal's was boiled, Mauritania fries the fish after coating with a seasoned flour, making it much less likely to overcook. I have to question why both recipes cooked the fish, then left it to cool down for at least 30 minutes before plating it. Veg-wise, the dish is fairly similar to Senegal, including onion, garlic, aubergine, sweet potato, potato, onion and tomatoes. I really appreciated the addition of a chilli into the thieboudienne, it gave another dimension to what could be quite a one-note dish.
Central African Republic - Poulet Nyembwe
We're back with Poulet Nyembwe again, making this (I believe), the third time I've cooked this in my global journey. There's not much new to say here unfortunately. It's very tasty, but the combination of onion, garlic, tomato, ginger, peanut butter and chicken can only take so many forms. This recipe did call for nutmeg, which was new in theory, but there was not enough of it in the recipe to justify its addition, as I couldn't pick up on it at all.
Egypt - Koshari
If you're not a fan of carbs, then steer clear of Egypt's Koshari. In this dish, we have rice, elbow pasta, spaghetti, chickpeas and lentils (though I used split peas as I wasn't paying enough attention to the packet I picked up out of my cupboard). Koshari is actually fully vegan, so you can feel less bad about your health as you guzzle down pure carbohydrates. Topped with fried onions and flavoured predominantly with cumin and lime (with some coriander and garlic thrown in for good measure), Koshari is served with not one, but two tomato-based sauces. The sauce on top of the carb-mountain is a "fresh red sauce", containing tomato, a lot of green pepper, onion and garlic, flavoured with cumin, coriander and lime, as well as a chilli. The sauce in the background is a "traditional koshari red sauce", a cooked tomato sauce flavoured with vinegar, garlic, cumin and coriander. Of the two, I definitely preferred the cooked one, as I found the raw blended onion to be quite overpowering for my pallet.
Trinidad and Tobago - Callaloo
This isn't the first time I've encountered Callaloo - it's also the national dish of Dominica. Callaloo from Trinidad and Tobago is very similar, a stew of callaloo (a spinach-like vegetable), pumpkin, okra, carrot, onion, thyme, garlic, chilli and celery, all blended down and thinned out with coconut milk, and served with meat or crab (I used chicken to help keep costs down). Due to the fact that it consists of many veggies of many colours all blended together, it's unfortunately quite difficult to make it look as pretty as it tastes. Though not pictured here, I served with rice, as an accompaniment to help dampen the spice of the chilli.