Europe is one of the oldest continents in the world which is represented by a number of countries with different languages and cultures. Accordingly, European nutrition norms and cooking methods are multiple despite the common points that unify the countries in some way. For instance, European Christians consider the roasted turkey as a very principal meal for celebrating Christmas in addition to the other types of food and sweets that are prepared on this celebration.
European cooking includes European countries that call it ‘continental’ in addition to Russian, Australian, Newzeelandese, and Latin and North Americas’.
European cooking relies a lot on a big variety and quantity of meats which are accomapnies or spiced by sauces. Europeans also consume flour bread as a very important source of carbohydrates more than potatoes in comparison to the Asian cooking that relies on rice.
Our videos will take you to a very interesting tour for discovering European cooking according to the geographical division of Europe from East to West, North to South. Watch our videos, you will find out the European tastes and cooking traditions.
We have selected Russian cooking because it is the most famous and popular cooking in Eastern Europe. Plus, Russia is a vast large country with a large variety of cooking arts as this country contains a number of smaller ones with different cultures and traditions.
Restaurants worldwide include Russian cuisine in their menus such as caviar, red fish, cream or ‘‘smitana’’ , black wheat ,and ‘‘ jodar flour ; in addition to famous recipes such as stodin and okha. Russian cooking has had its influence on other countries’ directly or indirectly. And in the 19th century, Russian culinary art started competing the French one at the levels of its influence or popularity in Europe.
North European cooking
Holandese recipes The Holandese cooking is based on fishing and farming including soil plantation for producing crops and breeding farm animals. Holandese cooking is simple made of a lot of vegetables and little meats. Breakfast and lunch are constituted of bread and other food while dinner is made of potatoes and meat and completed of seasonal vegetables.
Before, Holandese food was almost rich of fat for answering the needs of the labourers who brought their culture to the country and whose nutrition contained a lot of dairy products.
Holandese cooking has not developed much ; therefore, it is described as « rural » although there are still regions that have kept some of these dishes such as Holandese sauce which is very famous.
Since the beginning of the twentieth century, Holandese cooking has changed and become more influenced by other cultures, especially in big cities.
Traditional Norvegian cooking is constituted of the country’s natural fortune in the mountains and coasts. Norvegian cooking is very different from its continental neighbours by focusing on fish and sea birds.
By contrast, Norvegian modern cooking is influenced by international cultures despite its influence by traditional one. For example, pasta and meat balls are very popular in Holandese restaurants, where you expect to find any food you wish as in any Western European city.
Finnish cooking is well known by using complete flour of wheat or oat. it is also characterised by the use of dairy products such as sour milk as a drink or food or in other recipes. The Finnish used to use a type of turnip before it was replaced by potatoes in the 18th century.
Fish and meat play a very important role in Finnish traditional cooking in the west of the country, while vegetables and a variety of mushrooms are used in the east.
Modern Finnish dishes are lighter and smaller containing different vegetables in general, which reflects the big influence of European and Amercian cooking.
Italian cooking has evolved throughout history according to social and political changes. Its beginning can be traced back to the 4th century BC. But the biggest influence on the Italian cooking was the integration of vegetables and other products that were brought from the Americas such as potatoes, tomatos, piment, mais and cacao. Yet, these ingredients have not appeared in the Italian cuisine before the 18th century.
It is worth mentioning that the famous Italian pasta came from China from the Italian explorer Marco Polo when he brouht noodles and its making method from flour or rice,water and eggs…etc.
Italian ingredients differ from one region to the other although the most important dishes have spread everywhere in Italy and the world. For instance, la pizza,pasta, lazagna, ravioli, teramisu…
Cheese and wine are also a great part of Italian cooking and have played different roles at the national and continental levels. Coffee traditions are part of the Italian drink culture, especially the expresso.
Belonging to North Mediterranean region, Spanish cooking is essentially based on the use of many vegetables and fruits as awell as sea food. In addion to the large use of olives and olive oil, which distinguishes the region from the rest of the world.
Thanks to Spain’s direct contact with other cultures,especially Arab and Jewish ones, Spanish cooking is very rich of variety and tastes. It is famous for using vegetables, fresh fish, and herbs that makes the food more delicious with nice smells. But the Spanish do not use paprika like Mexican or Arabic cooking despite their many common points.
To conclude, Spanish cooking in the North is characterised by the consumption of meat and fat, while the South is very Mediterranean, where fish and sea food are highly consumed.
Portuguese cooking is distinguished by its richness of flavours and its closeness to Mediterranean cooking. The Portuguese had many colonies, which explains the richness of their cooking thanks to the different spices they brought from those colonies.for instance, black pepper, cinnamon, paprkika and so on. Olive oil is the most widely used ingredient in Portuguese cooking in addition to garlic and some herbs such as coriander and persil.
The Portuguese have only coffee and bread for breakfast. Lunch lasts for more than one hour, while they have dinner late in general. In addition, lunch and dinner include soup, especially soup of green caldo with potatoes and cabbage.
The Portuguese are among the four countries that are famous for the high consumption of fish and sea food.
French cuisine is very famous worldwide by its prestigious traditions and continuous evolution throughout centuries. In the Middle Ages, French tables were beautifully decorated and highly sophisticated in the palaces of great personalities. Yet, the French prefer using less spices in their food.
French cooking has evolved thanks to a number of chefs who have competed to make changes and invent new recipes and table styles. In the beginning, this innovation started in Paris and spead in the rest of the country, which has made French cooking one of the best in the world.
The French having breakfast early in coffee shops. It is mostly constituted of bread and butter, chocalte, coffee or tea, and croissant. Fonr lunch, the French take their time to enjoy this meal, especially on Sunday, when they have it with their families. Most of the time, because of work constraints, lunch is constituted of a sandwitch that is followed by a cake. Dinner is moslty constituted of entrées, main meal, bread,cheese, wine and mineral water despite the fact that young people consume less wine. Besides, fruits’ consumption has increased. Restaurants start at 7pm and stop getting orders at 10pm and 11. But many are closed on Sunday.
United Kingdom Recipes
British cooking includes a number of traditions that are historically specific to the United Kingdom. Cooking is made of local ingredients used with simple sausages to have some flavour. Yet, because of its openness to different cultures due to its colonial history, the UK is a melting pot of a multiplicity of flavours from South Asia such as chicken, masala, fish, curry….etc.
Modern British cooking is the new style that has developed since the end of the 70s. it uses high quality ingredients mixing up traditional recipes with modern ideas. Plus, modern British cooking relies a lot on Mediterranean one, in addition to Middle Eastern and South and East Asian kitchens.
Chefs and cookers have made British cooking very popular thanks to TV programmes and cooking books by TV chefs like Fanny Cradock, Dylia Smith, Gordon Ramzi, Jimmy Oliver. In addition to food programme on BBC Radio 4.
Raclette, Rösti, and fondue are the most popular Swiss dishes that one can find anywhere in this country. Depending on climate differences and languages, every Swiss region has made its own dishes which are based on the same ingredients used in other European countries. Indeed, Switzerland is very famous for its high quality and delicious cheese ,especially gruyère.
Switzerland is considered as the first consumer of chocolate in the world thanks to its developed industry from the 18th Century. The invention of chocalate with milk by Daniel Peter has ha dits positive impact on Swiss chocolate industry that is considered the best worldwide.
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