Of course the rating of something like food is entirely subjective. A person from one culture is sure to have a different taste pallete from a person of another. Nevertheless, we have taken a number of different lists from various sources and endeavored to come up with a list, our own, of the top 10 cuisines in the World. Our criteria was simple. We looked for similarities among all the lists we researched to determine which cuisines came most frequently, closest to the top of each given list.
Here is the list of the top 10 cuisines according to a synopsis of all the lists we researched.
1. Chinese Cuisine: easily makes first place. It seems that most everybody loves good Chinese food. One reason may be due to the diversity of Chinese food. Another may be due to a consistent richness in flavor present in virtually all Chinese cuisine.
Chinese food is generally rich in vegetables, many very strong tasting but taken with rather bland starchy foods. The main ingredients of Chinese food are meat, starch, usually rice and vegetables. Chinese chefs apparently go through some form of innovation training in that they endeavor to create a balance in a meal. Rich strong tasting foods offset by more bland tasting foods, such as rice; brightly colored foods offset by more neutral colors; sweet offset with sour. The Chinese are known for serving dishes that are healthy for you.
2. French Cuisine: We found that of all the different cuisines in the World, only one stood any chance of competing with Chinese cuisine and that was French cuisine. Among the cuisines in Western culture, French cuisine wins without arguement.
French cuisine has a reputation for being elegant. Haute cuisine translated ‘high cooking’ is a more classical French cuisine. It is known for very rich and elaborate dishes, generally only enjoyed by the very wealthy. Today, Haute cuisine accounts for less than 1% of French cuisine. Now you can find an array of much lighter, tasty dishes. French cuisine is also very diverse. You can find foods as varied as ‘butter and cream’ based dishes or ‘garlic and oil’ or even sauerkraut.
3. Italian Cuisine: As Western foods go, Italian cuisine takes up a close second behind French cuisine. For many, the first thing that comes to mind when thinking about Italian cuisine is tomatoes and pasta. Many will also think of cheese.
Most Italian dishes are really rather light, not heavy as some suppose. They are also quite diverse having been developed differently in different parts of Italy. People of Western culture are most familiar with cuisine from Campania & Naples. Dishes such as Calzone, Pizza and Parmigiana came from there. Many of the dishes from all over Italy include some pasta, many include cheese and often a red or white sauce.
4. Indian Cuisine: Quite consistently, Indian cuisine came in fourth. Indian cuisine, though different in different regions of India is largely divided into North Indian cuisine, which generally involves a wheat base, usually made into some form of bread, and South Indian cuisine, which generally includes rice. North Indian sauces tend to be thicker than South Indian sauces, presumably because rice can remain firm in a thin sauce but bread seems to go better with a thick sauce.
5. Japanese Cuisine: We found some debate concerning which should take fifth place. By a small margin, Japanese was more popular than Thai cuisine. It’s no wonder because the two are actually pretty close, both are derived from early Chinese cooking.
The Japanese are known for their sushi, usually wrapped in rice. Northern Japanese cuisine tends to be a bit sweeter than southern Japanese cuisine. Rice is consistently the ‘base’ of any given dish.
6. Mexican Cuisine: Clearly the dish that was going to take 6th place was going to originate from some Spanish dishes. We found Mexican; Spanish and Moroccan at or very near 6th position. Most often we found one Spanish cuisine or another right at 6th and the Spanish cuisine most listed at or around 6th position was Mexican.
Mexican food is known to be spicey; often rather hot. The truth is, Northern Mexican food or ‘Yankee Mexican Cuisine’ is what includes the tacos, encheladas and tortillas sometimes baked in an in ground natural oven or cooked over a fire pit. Central Mexican cuisine as earned a more pristine reputation, being more refined. It includes Mexican influence on many dishes from all over the World.
7. Lebanese Cuisine: At this stage of our research things began to get a little fuzzy. We had a difficult time with number 7. We chose Lebanese Cuisine because we found it most often at or below 9 but in a one case it ranked as high as #1.
The Lebanese are largely vegetarians. So, Lebanese cuisine usually includes a lot of vegetables and little meat. Though not quite as rich in spices as some other cuisines it is generally seasoned with some care and is quite tasty.
8. Thai Cuisine: Pretty clearly, Thai cuisine came in at 8. We found it in this position numerous times and also found it close, both before and after #8.
Like Japanese cuisine, Thai cuisine has origins in ancient Chinese cuisine. Rice is almost always the base and a balance between strong and bland; bright and neutral; sweet and sour is consistently achieved. In the north, Thai cuisine often includes strong fish and shellfish as well as insect larvae.
9. Greek Cuisine: A few Middle Eastern dishes competed closely with Greek cuisine for 9th position. We saw Indonesian; Turkish and a few others. Most of the lists we saw put Greek cuisine at or near 9th position.
Olives and olive oil are well known to be a part of Greek cuisine. Lots of vegetables, herbs, cheeses and grains are also used. Greek dishes also include various different meats, poultry and fish as well.
10. Indonesian Cuisine: Honestly, the cuisines listed in and around 10th position were as diverse as the lists we studied. One of the cuisines listed was Indonesian and we randomly picked it as our 10th choice.
Indonesian food is generally served with rice or noodles. Generally it is spicey hot. Indonesian food is not bland. Meat and vegetables, finely chopped and seasoned heavily are common Indonesian dishes.
We noticed that no cuisines from North America made any of the lists nor did any dishes from the entire continent of Africa. Also, Australia nor New Zealand were named.