Western cuisine is also known as European cuisine and belongs to European countries and other Western countries at the same time such as Russia, the Americas, Southern Africa, and a couple more. The cuisines among these Western countries are actually different from each other but still have some similarities.
Common products in Western countries
When compared to Asian countries and cuisine, meat has an important role in Western food culture. Steak could be the most preferred type of cooked meat.
Dairy products are generally used in the cooking process, however milk products have some varieties and especially cheese has countless variations. Consuming bread, flatbread, pastries, pasta, dumplings, rice, and potato are very common and usual.
Also, eating salad every day with different ingredients and sauces should not be a surprise especially for European countries.
Unlike Asian countries, Western dishes are served separately, most particularly if the taste or serving temperature are different from each other like sweet and sour or cold and hot.
Generally, dishes are served within an order that follows starters like soup, main dish, and dessert.
In some countries sharing dishes is a very common thing and can be notified by seeing more than a couple plates on a dining table. For example, in Spain, tapas are usually eaten at dinner which are different kinds of dishes, served in small plates and placed in the middle of the table for everyone to share. Types can be olives, seafood alternatives (mostly), potatoes, ham, etc. They can be either cold or hot, depending on ingredients.
Another common type of eating is the buffet style. Both cold and hot products are served together. Actually, appetizers, main dishes, and desserts are served in a buffet at the same time.
Types of soups, salads, charcuterie board along with different types of cheese, cooked meat products, pies, pasta, rice, raw & cooked vegetables, bread alternatives, cakes, waffles, pastries, and puddings are very popular and could be the typical examples of a lunch or dinner buffet.
Buffet style is well seen at brunches also. Brunch is generally preferred at holidays, gatherings or special events. Some products could be the same with lunch or dinner buffets however different kinds of dishes are also considered since brunch is the combination of breakfast and lunch, mostly served between 10:00-15:00. Brunch culture is originated from England which also includes alcoholic beverages and cocktails.
Last but not least, dishes in Western cuisine are not eaten with chopsticks; but with a fork, knife and spoon. Different types of forks, knives, and spoons exist for different types of food. For example, steaks are cut with a steak knife (sharper than usual), and desserts are eaten with different size of a spoon than soups. Still, some dishes are eaten by hands like hot wings or chicken fingers.
Here are some popular and much-consumed dishes by country
- Americas: Pizza, hamburger, steak, buffalo wings, french fries, burrito - Italy: Pizza and pasta - England: Fish & chips - Turkey: Kebab - France: Seafood products and tartar (uncooked meat), quiche - Austria: Wiener schnitzel - Germany: Types of sausages and french fries - Russia: Pelmeni (dumplings filled with minced meat) - Switzerland: Cheese fondue - Spain: Paella (a type of rice dish made plain or with meat or seafood)
When considering Western cuisine in general, most consumed and popular products could be different types of salad (especially in Europe), types of sandwiches (inevitable for every country, we believe), types of wraps, types of pasta, types of hamburgers, and types of doughnuts. Yes, each of them has many types depending on the food culture.
For example, a popular and typical sandwich example is peanut butter & jelly sandwich for the Americas, but in Mediterranean countries, veggie sandwich or one that contains cheese, smoked meat and tomatoes are common.
What about Western dishes in Malaysia?
There are many restaurants and cafes that serve Western dishes additional to local or Asian tastes. Also, some popular places around the world like Hard Rock Cafe are available in Malaysia.
If you are looking for entertainment while enjoying your Western food and drinks, there are tons of places to visit. If you are a home-person and prefer to eat at home, you can always order Western food online with delivery. It can be for any type of meal; breakfast, lunch or dinner.
For a change, Western food alternatives could be preferred for office parties and special gatherings. Endless finger food alternatives are available and can be arranged easily in Malaysia.
Why don't you contact Smartbite for your upcoming event? We will make sure to arrange different Western food alternatives according to your need and taste. Soups, salads, sauteed vegetables, salty tarts and pies, meat skewers, fish, cheese platters, stuffed mushrooms, meatballs, pasta, grilled meat, wraps, falafel, quesadilla, cakes, puddings, doughnuts, and unending alternatives. Which ones fit the best to your guest profile? Let us create the ideal menu or just a single dish to be able to introduce Western tastes.
Western breakfast vs. brunch
Even though breakfast culture changes according to a country, brunches are much alike. When we look at Western countries’ breakfast culture, not like Asian countries, soups are rarely consumed, almost never.
Instead, pastries are much preferred. Pancakes, types of bread, croissants, and bagels are typical examples of pastries consumed at breakfast or brunch.
As each country has its own seasonal ingredients and eating habits, differences can be seen easily among them. For example, in France, people mostly have croissants and coffee in the mornings, while in England people tend to eat bread, cooked eggs, sausage, beans, mushrooms, and tomatoes.
Or only hot corn cereal is eaten in South Africa, while in Turkey a large table is set with Turkish bagel, cooked eggs, spicy sausage, cheese, jam, honey, and olives.
People are likely to spend a long time at the breakfast table in Germany, while Americans act like they are usually in rush and eat a bowl of cold sugary cereal in a couple of minutes.
Other than these traditional examples, of course, there are healthy breakfast varieties are available such as types of omelettes, types of mueslis, burritos, pancakes, and toasts filled with melting cheese.
Brunch buffets in Western countries are more or less the same as breakfasts but in a richer way. Instead of a type of each item, varieties are commonly served in brunches like for cereal, bread, cheese, pastries, eggs, etc.
Other than these varieties, roasted potatoes, roasted vegetables, cooked sausages, smoked ham and salmon, bacon, green leaves for salad, tomatoes, french toast, soup, seafood like shrimps, fruits, and generous types of desserts are generally have their place in a buffet. Also, for beverages, tea, coffee, sparkling water, fresh fruit juices, champagne, bloody mary, or mimosa likely to be served in a Western brunch buffet.
Like in Western countries, Asian countries have started to serve brunch in business meetings. It may be served as plated or buffet.
According to the attendee profile, a menu can be set including Western and local items. Since it would a business meeting, unsmelly products and lightly cooked items should be chosen for the menu. Otherwise, people would tend to sleep on the meeting table or be disturbed by the smell. If you'd like to learn more, feel free to check out all about catering guide.
An example for a plated brunch could include a poached egg, type of pastry or bread, cheese, butter, jam, roasted potatoes or mushrooms, grilled sausage, mini muffin or doughnut, and some sliced fruits.
Vegetarianism & veganism
Not surprisingly, both vegetarianism and veganism are increasing in Western countries year by year like Asia.
Vegetarians are more likely to find or create dishes easily than vegans since the only thing they do not consume is meat products. They may be okay with dairy products.
On the other side, in addition to meat products, vegans avoid eating animal-based products as well. These can be dairy, eggs, chicken or meat broth, gelatin, and even honey.
Vegans generally consume all types of vegetables, fruits, grains, nuts, soy foods, legumes, and appropriate oils. When dining outside or ordering food online; vegetables, risotto, pasta, types of curries, and stews are taken the top of the most commonly preferred list by vegans.
Best dishes for vegetarians?
Well, it really depends on taste. It could be spaghetti with tomato sauce, a mushroom risotto, a vegetable stew or vegetable fried rice, quinoa salad, margarita pizza, tortilla or onion soup, falafel, and more.
Even if it sounds odd, some products like pasta and bread can be consumed by vegans. Most packaged pasta is free of eggs such as spaghetti and rotini. With bread, it is actually the opposite. Fresh ones in bakeries are less risky than packaged ones. Normally, bread is made from flour, water, yeast, and salt. Alternatives like bagels, lavash, focaccia, and tortillas should be fine. When buying a packaged bread in a supermarket, it is always a good idea to check on the ingredients as they may contain eggs, milk, cream, casein and/or whey.
Why don't you check out Western food alternatives that are available for ordering online with the delivery option right now? We bet you'll discover your favourite Western meal!