May 18, 2024


Free For All Food

Recipes to whet your hunger for travel, from Italian Tagliatelle al Ragu to Moroccan lamb tagine

  • How about making an attempt the vintage Italian dish of Tagliatelle al Ragu from Bologna?   
  • Resembling the Cornish pasty, the Argentinian empanada is best in winter  
  • Prepare dinner a cassoulet – a herb-crammed, meat and bean stew that originated in France 

About the many years, the likes of Keith Floyd, Nigel Slater, Nigella Lawson and Rick Stein have under no circumstances been much from our television screens, frequently right after foreign jaunts.

Like them, we have become accustomed to returning home hoping to recreate that daily life-altering Colosseum-facet bowl of cacio e pepe in Rome.

With recipe-inspiring holidays on hold, how about cooking up a style of overseas? Here’s a selection of basic dishes to revive your wanderlust in the lockdown… 

Fantastic Early morning VIETNAM: BUN CHA

Bun Cha – grilled minced pork accompanied by rice noodles, herbs and pickled veggies – is light, spicy and effortless to put alongside one another
Bun Cha originated in Vietnam and Barack Obama enjoyed the dish on a go to to the region in 2016. Pictured is the Thu Bon River in Hoi An

This dish could possibly as properly be named Vietnamese meatballs as grilled minced pork is accompanied by rice noodles, herbs and pickled vegetables.

The make or crack component is a dipping sauce built from fish sauce, vinegar, sugar, garlic and chilli. Bun Cha is light, spicy, effortless to place with each other and will come from the northern funds Hanoi.

Wherever TO GO: The dish’s most renowned physical appearance came in 2016, when the late chef Anthony Bourdain and then U.S. President Barack Obama shared a meal at Bun Cha Huong Lien in Hanoi — as featured on the television sequence Elements Unidentified.

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Most Italians flip their noses up at spaghetti Bolognese, so how about trying the Italian traditional Tagliatelle al Ragu from Bologna? Recipes change but a base of finely chopped carrots, celery and onion is necessary, as is the inclusion of wine (crimson or white).

A lot of also swear by a dash of milk or cream — Mary Berry provoked outrage in 2017 by accomplishing so but her recipe, to be observed on the net, is a fantastic one.

The place TO GO: In close proximity to the Piazza Maggiore, Osteria dell’Orsa ( has been serving ragu (£8) since 1979.


Cassoulet is a herb-stuffed, meat and bean stew that is mentioned at first to come from the small city of Castelnaudry — near Toulouse and Carcassone in France

Head to southern France and you are likely to come across several variations of cassoulet. But the herb-crammed, meat and bean stew is said at first to come from the compact city of Castelnaudry — in the vicinity of Toulouse and Carcassone — which serves its cassoulet with duck confit.

Recipes are debated but consensus is that the vital is the beans (haricot or cannellini) which should be tender but not slipping apart and whole of herby aromas.

Raymond Blanc’s recipe can be found on the internet and is a great beginning point.

Wherever TO GO: Le Tirou ( in Castelnaudry which serves a a few-training course menu, centered on cassoulet, for £35.

JAPANESE Consolation Meals: KATSU DON

Katsu Don, a favourite in Tokyo, consists of a breaded pork cutlet simmered with onions, egg and served above rice. The vital ingredient is the sauce manufactured from soy, mirin and dashi (fish stock) which presents the harmony of sharp and salty with the prosperous eggs and pork.

There is a great recipe in Tokyo Stories by Tim Anderson ( isles £26.99).

Wherever TO GO: Head to Katsukichi in the Shibuya district, in which the dish is about £10 ( 


Lamb is the foundation for most tagines and other substances contain turmeric, paprika, ginger, cinnamon as well as dried fruits these kinds of as apricots, sultanas and dates

Punchy spices, clean herbs and solid citrus notes could be just the tonic to brighten up a lockdown night. Tagines acquire their identify from the earthenware pot utilised for cooking, but any casserole dish will do. Lamb is the most popular foundation, or you can try out a vegetarian edition.

Substances incorporate turmeric, paprika, ginger, cinnamon as nicely as dried fruits these kinds of as apricots, sultanas and dates. Rick Stein, Nigella Lawson and Nigel Slater all have variations.

Where by TO GO: Try The Henna Art Café in Marrakech (, which has dishes from £2.50 and is a shorter walk from Jemaa el-Fna square.


In the 15th century at the Convent of Santa Clara in Puebla, Mexico, a team of nuns cobbled with each other a sauce from chilies, spices, nuts and chocolate that they served to a traveling to archbishop.

Mole implies combine and there are hundreds of variants, but the crucial ingredients are chocolate and chili. Seem out for a recipe (Wahaca founder Thomasina Miers has a few) showcasing darkish chocolate and smoky ancho chilies.

The place TO GO: Sample mole and obtain pre-produced pastes at Oaxaca City’s central Mercado de Bentio Juarez. Dishes £1-£5.


The fillings for empanadas, pictured, assortment from beef to lamb, hen, seafood and greens

Resembling the Cornish pasty, the Argentinian empanada is the great foodstuff for the cold winter months. 

In Britain we’re probably not so nicely acquainted with this South American country’s cuisine but The Meals of Argentina ( kingdom, £25.64) is an great introduction.

Fillings fluctuate from beef to lamb, chicken, seafood and vegetables. The empanadas of Patagonia’s Tierra del Fuego are shortcrust pastry packed with lamb, spices, chopped challenging-boiled eggs and olives: warm, comforting and wonderful.

Wherever TO GO: Ten-table La Salamandra Pulperia in Andean tourism incredibly hot-spot Bariloche’s Centro Civico serves delicious empanadas from a couple pounds.


The Uk is so fond of fish and chips that it was just one of the few foods safeguarded from rationing in the course of the entire world wars.

Try out building your individual with mushy peas and tartare sauce. Mild batter is the critical and quite warm oil when frying will assure everything is crisp. Tom Kerridge is a superior start off for a recipe.

In which TO GO: St Andrew’s ( has been at Portobello Seashore, Edinburgh, for 100 several years. A haddock fish supper is £7.80.