plates of food

How to understand a culture through food

Exploring and understanding other cultures have undeniable benefits. It allows you to keep an open mind, helps prevent ethnic divisions, and allows you to communicate with others more effectively. With the inability to travel to new places this past year, we must find new ways to explore cultures outside of our own—what better way to do that than tasting foods from around the world. Taking a deeper dive into the traditional cuisines of other countries can teach you a lot about a place and its people.

Understanding culture through food is not as complex as many people make it out to be. Food structure and presentation change based on several factors, but our ancestors have used this substance for sustenance throughout the ages.

That said, here are some facts about understanding culture through food and why the story of each dish matters in the history of culture.

Food Shows Values

There is a lot of value a culture can attach to different kinds of food. For example, some foods are eaten regularly, while some are eaten intermittently or even on special occasions. This helps you understand other parts of a culture, such as the days of celebration or festival.

Also, the kind of food the people in a culture eat tells what values they hold dear. For example, healthy food choices can indicate that they care deeply about their health and eat healthy food to preserve their health. 

Food Gives You Insight Into History

We all enjoy food, but it may shock you to know that every food has its history. Additionally, the presentation of food is rooted in deep history. Thus, another way to understand the history and traditions of another culture is by its food.

When you ask about any cuisine you’re curious about; many locals would gladly tell you about the history behind the food, including how it came about and what occasions people eat this cuisine. More often than not, this food is deeply connected to important stories in history for this culture.

Learn the Story of Each Dish

Every dish has a story, and each of them is interesting to hear. For example, when you ask locals about a cuisine, they would tell you everything about it, including how it is made, how it differs from other meals with the same ingredients. 

Expand Your Palate With The Dumpling School

The Dumpling School gives you a unique way to explore traditional Taiwanese cuisine. You not only get to taste different foods, but you will also learn how to cook them from scratch. Our Chefs will give you historical insights and the story of dumplings. Schedule a dumpling class here to expand your cultural and culinary palates!


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