The World in Street Food

As we get busier, and we spend more time on the go, the quick and easy phenomenon known as street food rises to fill the gap that was previously occupied by long dinners in restaurants or at home. Street food varies widely from place to place — many cities offer relaxed regulations, which allows vendors the freedom to sell anything that they can make and serve on the go. Other cities only allow a small number of carts, and consequently can only offer a limited number of dishes.

As you travel the world, make sure to check out the local street food specialties, which will enable you to get closer to the local culture. Here’s a round-up of some of the world’s most popular street foods.

$2 Chow Mein – Montreal, Canada

In Canada, there are pretty strict regulations on what foods can be sold in carts or from trucks on the street, and many cities like Montreal don’t allow any street food at all. Inventive vendors have gotten around this by renting out restaurant storefronts and opening the front windows to serve customers walking by. The most famous street food from Montreal is $2 chow mein — a delicious mixture of chow mein noodles and bean sprouts cooked in soy sauce, smothered in a melted peanut butter gravy. They’re delicious, but definitely have a limited lifespan, so eat them quickly!

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Kürtőskalács – Hungary

This delicious treat that’s known in English as a chimney cake is called kürtőskalács in Hungary, but can be found in various other Eastern European countries under names like prügelkrapfen or trdelník, depending on the nationality of your server. Regardless of what you order, the result is the same — a delicious soft dough that’s wrapped around a spit and rolled in sugar. Once the dough is loaded on to the spit, it’s baked over a fire, so the sugar caramelizes as the cake bakes. The result is a soft spiral confection covered in a crunchy-sweet exterior.

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