I’ve always thought of traveling as a time to be adventurous. It is a time to try new things and step outside of my comfort zone. You only live once, right? Might as well do something you wouldn’t do at home.
When my family and I go cruising, that rule applies even more so when it comes to food. Since most dining experiences are included with the trip, I enjoy trying the ‘new to me’ foods and challenging others in my family to do the same.
Here’s a look at some of the adventurous eats we tried on our recent Carnival cruise –
Good Eats in the Dining Room
Each night in the dining room, I challenged myself to try something from the DIDJA (as in ‘did you’ ever….) section of the menu.
One night it was ceviche, another night I tried duck, beef carpaccio and the big test for me was eating frog legs. I think the servers were just as excited as I was to see how I reacted to the new dishes each night.
It made for a fun experience each night at dinner. And while I tried something new each night, the only dish that I just couldn’t finish was the frog legs. I found myself a little squeamish, but I certainly gave it a good effort.
The Chef’s Table
One night, as a special treat, my husband and I signed up for a night at Carnival’s exclusive The Chef’s Table experience. For an additional $74 per person, we took a tour of the ship’s galley in action and were treated to a seven course meal, with wine included. It was a fantastic experience and allowed for some very adventurous dishes.
The ‘Tomatoes Our Way!’ dish was beautifully prepared and included tomatoes that were chardonnay poached and coated in cocoa butter, and plated with a couple dollops of aerated tomato juice. It was a creative dish and I couldn’t help but clean my plate with this one.
My favorite dish of the night at The Chef’s Table was one where I really surprised myself. Tuna Banh Mi is definitely something I would have never tried at home, but on vacation – why not?! And besides, you don’t tell a chef ‘no’ when he sets a dish in front of you! It was fantastic – and beautifully plated too. The tuna was delicious. Paired with the sesame crust, it had a great texture, which I’d never experienced before that night.
Green Eggs & Ham Character Breakfast
I was even able to get my kids in on the adventurous dining during the Green Eggs and Ham Breakfast With the Cat in the Hat and Friends. With Dr. Seuss inspired eats, the bright colors and playful atmosphere encouraged my girls to try the Green Eggs and Ham. It was like the book came to life when that plate of Green Eggs and Ham arrived at our table. The girls’ giggles and the squeals of excitement were the highlight of our morning. It took a little coaxing on my part, but they gave in and to everyone’s surprise – they liked it!
Another fun Dr. Seuss themed breakfast item that I considered adventurous eating was the cereal-crusted French toast. Just the colors alone made me want to try it, and yes, it’s covered in sugar – but it was delicious! Funny enough, I was the only one wild enough in my family to give it a try.
The big surprise of the trip for me was that I fell in love with escargot at the ship’s steakhouse. Nope, I had never tried it before this trip – but you only live once, remember? I decided that anything covered in butter and garlic couldn’t be that bad and it turns out, I was right. I loved it and I even ordered it again later that week in the dining room. It was that good!
Most people think of being adventurous on vacation as swimming with sharks, bungee jumping or overcoming a fear of heights. While my definition of adventurous involved food on this trip, it was fun to step outside of my comfort zone and try new things.
Now that I’m back home, I’m willing to try new foods and I’m always reminded of the great memories my family made together on our cruise and stepping outside the box to try delicious dishes along the way too.
This post was created for Away We Go with Carnival, the destination for getting in the getaway state of mind.