We Americans enjoy our fair share of sweet treats here in the United States. From chocolate candies to gooey baked goods, it’s apparent we take our sweets seriously. This isn’t to say however, that other countries don’t have their own sweet concoctions as well. If you’ve never traveled overseas and gotten to enjoy any of the delectable treats offered by our foreign neighbors, here’s what you might be missing out on.
Gulaab Jamun from India
Similar to the donut holes we know and love here in the US, the gulaab jamun from India are ball-shaped fried pieces of dough with a twist. Instead of being covered in powdered sugar and cinnamon, these popular Indian treats take on the flavor of the area from which they come.
For instance, gulaab jamun in some areas is drizzled with a sweet syrup flavored with rose water. In other areas, citrus juice or saffron might be used instead. This traditional Indian dessert is most commonly served during holiday celebrations.
Cream Candy or Chestnut Kintons from Japan
More of a dessert than a candy; and definitely not suitable for the movie theater, Japan’s cream candy is certainly something you won’t want to miss if you get the chance. Made from chestnuts harvested from trees that only grow in Japan and South Korea, the ingredients in this sweet treat also include sugar, sweet potatoes, vinegar and mirin sauce. Taking advantage of Mother Nature’s offerings, the Japanese have cornered the market with this delectable treat.
Baklava from Turkey
Originally concocted in Turkey, but now seen more as a Greek dessert, Baklava is a layered dough sweetened by a thick syrup consisting of sugar, honey, orange water and lemon juice. Melted butter and pistachio nuts are placed on top. The whole Baklava baking process is quite tricky requiring just the right humidity in the kitchen and a baker who knows how to work with the delicate Phyllo dough.
Pavlova from Australia and New Zealand
Not a dessert you’ll find on the street corner or in a convenience store, Pavlova is reserved for diners of prestigious restaurants in Australia and New Zealand. Although it’s a preferred dessert of the rich and famous, it’s not high in calories. Made from egg whites and sugar that when cooked correctly, produces a crunchy outer shell and a marshmallow-y center. Whipped cream is placed on top with kiwi, strawberries, raspberries or peaches placed in the center.
From cakes and cookies to ice cream and candy bars, it seems every country the world over enjoys their own brand of sweet, tasty goodness. The list above features four of the most popular desserts from around the globe. If any are unfamiliar, we encourage you to seek out a specialty shop or restaurant in your area to try them. If you can’t find one close by, you might just have to pack your bags and take a trip!