Before arriving, I asked my friend Google “What kind of food do they eat in Bangladesh?”
And the answer was: “Different traditional flat breads include Luchi, Porota, Bakhorkhani, Nan, Ruti, Rice Flour Flatbread, Chitai Pitha, and many more. Dishes made from chicken, beef, fish or mutton, as well as dal (a spicy lentil soup) and vegetables commonly accompany rice and flat breads.”
Sounded like Indian food and I like Indian food. I was happy.
I like mostly everything and I don’t mind tasting new food but I don’t eat meat which adds an extra layer of adventure when travelling to a new place.
So, what is the food really like here? Well exactly what my friend Google said. I’ve had a lot of rice and different kinds of vegetables since I’ve been here. And some were spicier than others…
For lunch at work, people either bring their meal or order from a nearby restaurant. That’s what I’ve done so far. For example, yesterday I had Curry Vegetables and Nan, today was Vegetable Fried Rice.
My colleagues took me to a small cantine near the office after one of our field visits. They seemed surprised that I wanted to try it out: “It is very local”, “- Perfect, that’s what I’m here for.”
Rice and Vegetables again and 2 types of balls: potato and green banana mixed with spices and onions.
But no fork. My colleagues smiled. I had forgotten that part… The way it goes here is right hand fingers. In that moment, I was so glad I had travelled to Nepal a while back and had experienced eating-with-your-fingers.
I thought I was cool and managing pretty well until… they brought out a fish. Like a whole fish (head and all) covered in sauce. I don’t know why I mentionned that I ate fish to them. I’m quite picky about my fish… Heeeelp. I cracked up and told them I had no idea how to proceed.
In the evening I have dinner with my roomates. And I am super lucky because one of them likes to cook. And… it’s almost too good to be true… 2 of my roomates are… wait for it… Vegetarian! So not only did I not have to go through the whole explanation of why I don’t eat meat, it just makes sharing food and eating together really easy. Happy me.
Tonight we tasted Lady Fingers with onions, garlic and spices.
Last night we ordered Pizza and called it Pizza Night.
Yep the food delivery system is great here, it’s called FoodPanda (like Deliveroo). The prices are good and it’s an easy alternative to going out which is complicated for safety reasons (I’ll talk about that some other time)
- I’ve been eating a lot of rice and vegetables
- I haven’t figured my breakfast routine out yet
- They have deserts for special occasions but I forgot to take pictures. All I can say is that they taste like pure sugar.
- I miss cheese already
- But I’ll survive 😉
PS : I’ve only been here 6 days so hopefully I will have more elaborate information about FOOD (such as names) as time goes on.
Update => Answers to your questions:
- I could have asked for a fork (I usually use one at work) but I wanted to eat the local way 😉
- I’ve tasted ginger in tea and I’m sure it is used in the sauces but I’m not quite sure yet. Curry I’ve only seen with Chicken for the moment. I’ve tasted chilie though..
- I drink water from water bottles or jugs.
- I asked my colleague to show me how to eat the fish: they actually used a spoon the cut it in half because I said I could eat the whole fish. But then you just kinda “dig in”. They fishbones are very thin so eating with your fingers actually helps sorting through.
- Napkins: I usually use one. During the meal you only use your right hand to eat so the other one is clean. And at the end, well you kinda lick your finger tips and then wash your hands. (To be honest, sometimes I use more… but to blow my nose because the food is so spicy LOL)
- Breakfast: this morning I heated Paratha and put a scrambled egg in it. Deliiiicious! Unfortunately there are no Danone yogurts here. Only Grameen Danone Shokti Doi’s but I will definitely be eating a lot of those 🙂