Look, I don’t really believe there’s much out there left to be discovered. Even the most remote, mysterious bits of the Amazon have pre-contact tribes of people who call the areas home. There’s really no foods that someone hasn’t eaten (in a practical sense), or any great surprises left in the world that someone hasn’t already been startled by. Okay, fine, there might be, but these aren’t things that I’m even remotely likely to discover for myself. When I speak of discovery, I speak of the joy of simply trying something, going some place, or experiencing something new.
I’ve discovered a few things in the past year or so that have made my life much richer, more satisfying, and more likely to end in a shallow gravy of cholesterol and shame. Whatever. This post is about discovery, so I’m going to share some of my favorite discoveries with you right now.
The Primate’s list of discovery!
1. Portuguese Food – Dude. I never expected that my favorite discovery of our trip to Hong Kong would be the Portuguese food we ate on Macau. Delicious, simple, vaguely familiar yet new at the same time. This was a great discovery.
2. Sea Kayaking – I don’t particularly like boats. I don’t particularly like boats without engines. Who knew that loading up some snacky-snacks in a Kayak and taking off from the beach could be so much fun? On our trip to Thailand, Carolyn and I made a day of sea kayaking. I didn’t even get seasick.
3. Japanese Convenience Store Food – You’ve never eaten a chicken nugget like the ones they fry up at Lawson convenience stores in Japan. The “red” flavor is mildly spicy, the “cheese” flavor tastes like a chicken breast wrapped around cheetos, breaded in crushed cheetos, and fried in a vat of cheese. If liking this kind of crap is wrong, I don’t want to be right.
4. Gyeran Bbang (Egg Bread) – Carolyn and I discovered this the last time we visited Seoul before leaving Korea. It’s like a sweet cornbread muffin with an egg up in it. It was delicious. There’s not a ton of Korean street foods I would say are must eats, but this one ranks right up there. *Don’t get me wrong, there’s lots of good food on the street in Korea, but not a lot that compares to banana roti.
5. Banana Roti – Okay, speaking of street food. Banana roti. It’s kinda my ultimate street delicacy. Bananas fried in neon orange margarine or coconut butter or whatever it is wrapped up in a thin pastry and cooked until it’s crisp? Yes, please. This is the one discovery from Thailand that I can’t seem to get at home.
6. Vietnamese Coffee
Ironically, this life-changing discovery happened at a restaurant in San Antonio, Texas. Vietnamese coffee is simple. Coffee, sweetened, condensed milk, ice. It’s a flavor that your soul recognizes, that your mouth loves, and that your stomach welcomes. It’s probably also a caloric bomb that will help guide you towards that shallow gravy faster than you’d like.
So surprise, surprise. What started out as a post about travel has once again turned into a post about things I like to eat. What’s a primate going to do about that? The answer is polish off the Ben and Jerry’s Liz Lemon frozen Greek Yogurt I have in the freezer. (Attention Ben & Jerry, I’ll give you that plug for free. Please keep producing the Liz Lemon flavor. kthxbai.)