A Swedish Smörgåsbord
Now used to describe a variety of options, the word smörgåsbord was stolen from the name for a Swedish buffet. In fact, buffets as we know them are Swedish in origin. A smörgåsbord includes various hot and cold dishes, and always features bread, cheese and fish. Rumour has it the best place to get one is the Café Opera in Stockholm.
Turkish chicken breast dessert (Tavuk Göğsü)
If you have any love for sweet and sour pork, you can’t make any complaints about this mash up of sweet and savoury. A mix of shredded chicken, milk, sugar and often cinnamon, it’s a local favourite that you’ll regret sidestepping. Get one of the best at Istanbul’s Saray Muhallebicisi, where Turkish dessert fans go to die.
This giant cousin of the kebab is a classic dish from Madeira. Get a taste of the real deal in at As Vides.
A German Christmas Goose (Weihnachtsgans)
Goose is the star of many a Christmas dinner in Germany, and it may be good enough reason to make it over there for Christmas break. The best place to taste it is likely in someone’s kitchen, but failing that you can book a table at Restaurant Scheune in Berlin.
Borscht in the Ukraine
This hearty soup is made from a meat broth, but beetroot is the main ingredient. You can eat is as a main or a side, and it’s best accompanied by a dollop of sour cream and a roaring fire. O’Panas in Kiev is a great place for local cuisine. If Kiev isn’t on your list, you can get good borscht in most Russian and Polish cities.
Promoted as a national dish by a cartel that sent cheese flowing beyond its borders, the Swiss fondue has never gone out of style. Le Chalet de Gruyères in the town of Gruyères is renowned for its fondue. Top it off with a shot of kirsch, which is also an ingredient in most fondue.
This shredded pancake is named after an Austrian emperor. It is often served with nuts and preserves, and dusted in sugar. If you can pronounce it, order it! Or point at a menu at Café Demel in Vienna.
A squid ink paella (Arròs Negre) in Spain
This dish also belongs on a list of the most deadly-looking in history. It’s not actually a paella, but is made in much the same way. You’ll be served some ink-drenched seafood in a bed of rice and veg. Chew on this Catalan favourite at Can Majó in Barcelona.
Melanzane alla parmigiana in Italy
Icelandic fermented Shark (kæstur hákarl)
Born of the days when food was fermented to preserve it for the winter, this dish might scare you off at first. This Icelandic version of biltong can be bought in shrink-wrapped bags from tourist spots. The adventurous should try it on the menu at 3 Frakkar in Reykjavík.