There’s something about ditching the silverware that makes food tastier. The local bar may tickle your finger food fancy, but there’s a world of hand-held snacks beyond nachos and wings. Try these tasty bites from around the world to see for yourself.
Try it in: Brazil
Coxinha is shredded chicken that’s wrapped in a savory dough, shaped into a drumstick, and deep-fried. Legend has it that Princess Isabel’s son was a picky eater, and when the royal kitchen ran out of his favorite chicken drumsticks, the chef concocted this Brazilian dish.
Try it in: India
Different regions of India put their own spin on these deep-fried, triangular pastries stuffed with spiced potatoes and peas. In Bengal, they add cauliflower and peanuts for a bit of crunch, while in Karnataka, onion samosas are a big hit.
3. Patatas Bravas
Try it in: Spain
Patatas bravas are to Spanish tapas bars what french fries are to American restaurants. Picture diced fries packed with regional spices and topped with an aioli and tomato–based bravas sauce.
4. Lumpiang Shanghai
Try it in: The Philippines
Chinese immigrants brought this pork, beef, and vegetable-stuffed spring roll to the Philippines, and it’s been a staple ever since. Step up your condiment game by dunking one in banana ketchup (yes, you heard that right) like the Filipinos do.
Try it in: Peru
Cancha comes from the kernels of maiz chulpe, a special variety of corn. When heated in oil, the dried kernels get slightly puffy and toasted, like corn nuts. Sprinkle some salt on top for a finishing touch.
Try it in: Greece
These spring roll wrappers, straight from mother nature herself, are filled with rice and ground lamb, and drizzled in lemon juice. Many Greeks believe that the gods ate these tasty grape leaves atop Mount Olympus.
Try it in: Peru
In the heart of the Amazon jungle, locals skewer and char this ajuaje-tree larva over an open flame. If you’re brave enough to look beyond its appearance and take a bite, you’ll be pleasantly surprised by its fresh hazelnut flavor.
Try it in: China
This one’s for you, dim sum lovers. Baozi, or bao, is a steamed, pork-filled bun paired alongside a sweet and savory dipping sauce. The best part? You don’t have to fly all the way to China for a bite; NYC has its fair share of authentic Chinese cuisine, too.
9. Sata Ayam
Try it in: Indonesia
Sata Ayam isn’t your typical chicken skewer. It’s infused with lemongrass, ginger, and other Indonesian spices. Electrify your palette by dunking the kebab in sambal kacang, a spicy peanut sauce.
Try it in: Afghanistan
This triangular pastry has become an important part of Jewish, Middle Eastern, and Moroccan cuisine over the years. And the range of fillings make it both a savory and sweet bite. Choose from cheese, spiced meat, and even pumpkin versions and enjoy with a cup of tea or coffee.