Isolation Masterchef: A Culinary Tour of the World from Your Kitchen (with Recipes)

31 August 2021
Read Time: 6.9 mins
Just because you're in lockdown doesn’t mean your palate can’t travel the world. 

Try these recipes from around the globe and go on a self-isolation culinary journey – a ‘tour de taste buds’ – one delicious morsel at a time. 
pasta dishes on table



The ultimate comfort food, if you have pasta in the pantry, take your tummy on an adventure to Italy with these 26 seafood pasta recipes. If you’re feeling really adventurous – and since you may have a bit more time on your hands, why not make the pasta from scratch like a true Italian.  (That is if you can get your hands on any flour of course…)

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Congee is a breakfast staple in china



Highly underrated in the western world but a breakfast staple and familiar fave in Chinese and Vietnamese culture, the humble congee is both comforting and transportive.  
So kalbi Korean BBQ


South Korea

So kalbi, Korea’s version of our national dish – the BBQ – simple but tasty and packed with flavour. The spirit of this dish is about sharing with friends and family so get the video call fired up and chow down together.
Turkey’s answer to the humble cheese toastie, the crispy, gooey and completely devourable gozleme isn’t as hard to make as it looks. Also, maybe it’s healthy because it includes spinach too.
flatbread is a staple food in many cuisines

Travelling the ancient Silk Road through the Middle East

In fact, is flatbread perfect isolation pantry staple food? From Greece, Italy and the Middle East to Mexico and India, there’s pretty much no culture that hasn’t tackled the flatbread. Check out this list of 35 flatbread-centric recipes featuring unleavened bread from all around the world. 

cullen skink is a hearty scottish soup



Made predominantly from oatmeal, these wholesome rolls are an oaty variation of the all flour-based version. Best straight from the oven with lashings of butter and dipped into a steaming bowl of the most comforting soup known to man, Cullen Skink, these little pillows of delight will have you longing for the misty bens and lochs of Scotland
From Russia with love comes this cream-sauce covered favourite, stroganoff, which is both winter- and isolation-appropriate. 
Mexican chilaquiles is an underrated dish



Mexico, as you may be aware, is a culinary powerhouse. Characterised by punchy, bold and piquant flavours, there are many Mexican superstar dishes ideal for isolation eating – nachos, tacos, enchiladas – but the criminally underrated chilaquiles should be added to your repertoire, stat. 
paella is a staple dish in Spain



Spain may be in lockdown but you can show your solitary solidarity by cooking their national dish paella (pronounced: pie-ay-yah) from the safety of your own kitchen. Rice, protein, a healthy smattering of veg – the hearty dish can easily be adapted to ingredients you have.
It’s hard to beat a standard mash but Ireland’s riff on the classic with Colcannon potatoes will have you pledging allegiance to the land of leprechauns, rainbows and Guinness quicker than you can say “to be sure, to be sure”.  
Stress-baking is a thing. So if you’re feeling a little overwhelmed with the state of the world, why not channel some of that anxiety into an oma-approved German apple cake? If you’re more of a pastry type, this classic Viennese strudel, direct from Austria,  is worth yodelling about from the alp tops.
choripan is an argentinian sandwich



Argentina comes to you in the form of the choripan – an (unsurprisingly) meat-stuffed sandwich – with punchy accoutrements like chimichurri and salsa criolla (creole salsa) round this chorizo-lovers fave out nicely.  

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swedish meatballs



No need to fret that you can’t get your Ikea fix in a new socially distant world, make these modern take of the Swedish meatball to bring the heart of Scandinavia straight to your house. 
french macarons



Francophiles, no need to cry into your carafe of beaujolais; whisk yourself away on an imaginary journey to the cobblestoned alleyways of Paris via what is arguably the most French food around: macarons. They take some baking skill and a substantial amount of technique but you’ll have plenty of time to master them in self-isolation.

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