What are the best carnival foods around the world?
During the months of early January to late February is the carnival season, a period when many Christians party, drink and celebrate before Lent. Lent occurs on Ash Wednesday and lasts until Easter Sunday. During Lent, Christians traditionally go through a period of fasting and abstain from meat, eggs, fats, and fish. However, the best thing about the carnival season is that everyone can participate in the traditions and party hard, even if you are not a Christian. Whether you’re looking for a new country to celebrate carnival before Lent begins, or you’re just looking for new dishes to try, these are the best foods to eat around the world during carnival season.
Carnival food in the United States
During Mardi Gras in New Orleans, people celebrate the festivities by eating lots of sweets, a staple of which is king cake. King cake is a cake that is baked in the shape of a ring to resemble a crown. It is then covered in a white icing and sprinkled with colored sugar in the colors of Mardi Gras: gold, green and purple. These colors represent power, faith and justice.
Additionally, the cake traditionally includes a small plastic baby inside, which is a symbol of good luck. The first person to find it becomes a “king” for the day and must host the next year’s Mardi Gras festivities!
Carnival food in Brazil
In Rio de Janeiro, enjoy the world’s largest carnival by filling yourself up on feijoada, a signature Brazilian dish. Feijoada is a stew consisting of black beans and various types of meats, such as pork, beef, ham, and sausage. It is then served with a side of rice, orange slices, and sautéed kale.
With feijoada being a flavorful dish, this type of comfort food pairs exceptionally well with caipirinha, Brazil’s signature cocktail. With refreshing tart flavors, this drink will help wash off the rich, heavy flavors in this dish.
Carnival Food in Italy
If you’re in Italy during carnival season, be sure to check out their captivating cannolis! Although the origins of this creamy dessert are difficult to determine, its birthplace is primarily considered to have come from Sicily. A cannoli is a pastry made up of a crispy shell covered in a sweet and creamy filling that is typically made up of ricotta cheese, powdered sugar, candied fruit, and chocolate chips. However, there are many different versions of cannolis that contain their own fillings made from other ingredients.
If you decide to visit Italy for its cannolis, be sure to eat one in Sicily, as their cannolis are the best due to the fact that their ricotta is made from fresh sheep’s milk.
Carnival Food in France
Did you know that Mardi Gras is also celebrated in France? In fact, the Mardi Gras traditions we are familiar with in the US were actually inherited from France. While the festivities are similar, the foods eaten are mostly different. In France, crepes, waffles, and fritters are traditionally consumed, with fritters being the most prominent confection during the carnival season.
Beignets are similar to doughnuts in that they are made by deep-frying the dough and coated with lots of powdered sugar. With a crunchy exterior and a fluffy interior, combined with sweet sugar, you won’t believe how good something so simple to make tastes.
Carnival Food in Germany
If you are a big meat lover then you must visit Germany where their bratwurst sausages will satisfy your cravings. Bratwurst is a type of sausage that originated in Germany and is made from ground pork and beef with various herbs and spices. Bratwurst is unique in that the way it is made is different in each region of Germany and it comes in various shapes and sizes. Typical garnishes with this sausage include sauerkraut, German potato salad, and cabbage.
When you visit Germany, you will find no shortage of sausages, as this meat is an iconic delicacy of the country.