Understanding Our Cultures with Food

I am seeking understanding for how I can be of service to the suffering planet and all its living beings right now. I’m not one to join crowds of people in a protest march, although I respect that right. But I do want to help.

In President Obama’s recent commencement address to 2020 graduates, he said that everyone’s talents are needed right now.

So I thought, what are my talents? I’ve done all kinds of things in my life, but what I’m doing at the moment is cooking and writing.

Could I use this as a kind of food activism to increase compassion and understanding in the world?

I took a look at our recipe data and realized that 68% of the recipes on this blog so far come from only 5 countries: United States of America, United Kingdom, Canada, France, and Italy… all places predominantly inhabited by white people.

This makes sense for me because I live in the US, grew up in Canada which has a strong French influence, and my two grandmothers were from the UK and Italy. I cook from the cultures infused in me by my family and my current location.

But what if we diversify our recipes here, and try making one dish from each of the 200 countries around the world? What do people eat in Kyrgyzstan, or Namibia, or Laos?

The food people eat tells us something about their lives, how they spend their days, what they share with their loved ones. It can open our mind to other cultures and experiences, and increase our compassion and understanding for other humans.

It’s a great lesson to share with our kids too, as they grow up in this confusing time.

And since animal lives matter too, we’ll be choosing plant-based recipes wherever possible for each country.

I hope that this exploration helps us to keep moving forward, increases global understanding, and inspires you to help in your own way as well.

And now, here is the data on how many recipes we have from each country so far (also represented on the map above)…

USA: 67
United Kingdom: 23
Canada: 19
France: 19
Italy: 17
India: 8
Germany: 6
Israel: 6
Japan: 6
Australia: 3

2 recipes each from: Austria, Belgium, China, Denmark, Greece, Indonesia, Mexico, Morocco, Netherlands, Russia, Thailand

1 recipe each from: Albania, Algeria, Bulgaria, Cuba, Egypt, Iran, Jamaica, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Tanzania

NO RECIPES YET from…

Afghanistan
Andorra
Angola
Antigua and Barbuda
Argentina
Armenia
Azerbaijan

Bahamas
Bahrain
Bangladesh
Barbados
Belarus
Belize
Benin
Bhutan
Bolivia
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Botswana
Brazil
Brunei
Burkina Faso
Burundi

Cote d’Ivoire
Cabo Verde
Cambodia
Cameroon
Central African Republic
Chad
Chile
Colombia
Comoros
Congo
Costa Rica
Croatia
Cyprus
Czech Republic

Djibouti
Dominica
Dominican Republic

Ecuador
El Salvador
Equatorial Guinea
Eritrea
Estonia
Eswatini
Ethiopia

Fiji
Finland

Gabon
Gambia
Georgia
Ghana
Grenada
Guatemala
Guinea
Guinea-Bissau
Guyana

Haiti
Holy See
Honduras
Hungary

Iceland
Iraq
Ireland

Jordan

Kazakhstan
Kenya
Kiribati
Kuwait
Kyrgyzstan

Laos
Latvia
Lebanon
Lesotho
Liberia
Libya
Liechtenstein
Lithuania
Luxembourg

Madagascar
Malawi
Malaysia
Maldives
Mali
Malta
Marshall Islands
Mauritania
Mauritius
Micronesia
Moldova
Monaco
Mongolia
Montenegro
Mozambique
Myanmar

Namibia
Nauru
Nepal
New Zealand
Nicaragua
Niger
Nigeria
North Korea
North Macedonia
Norway

Oman

Pakistan
Palau
Palestine State
Panama
Papua New Guinea
Paraguay
Peru
Philippines
Poland
Portugal

Qatar

Romania
Rwanda

Saint Kitts and Nevis
Saint Lucia
Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
Samoa
San Marino
Sao Tome and Principe
Saudi Arabia
Senegal
Serbia
Seychelles
Sierra Leone
Singapore
Slovakia
Soloman Islands
Somalia
South Korea
South Sudan
Spain
Sri Lanka
Sudan
Suriname
Switzerland
Syria

Tajikistan
Timor-Leste
Togo
Tonga
Trinidad and Tobago
Tunisia
Turkey
Turkmenistan
Tuvalu

Uganda
Ukraine
United Arab Emirates
Uruguay
Uzbekistan

Vanuatu
Venezuela
Vietnam

Yemen

Zambia
Zimbabwe

We have a long way to go, and this may only be a small way we can help in our little corner of the world, but if we all keep taking small steps together in the right direction, we’ll end up in a better place.

Thank you for joining us on this journey of mutual understanding.

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