Final: Australia vs. Guam

We made rice that was red, burgers that were tall, and chicken that was limey.  In the end, we had to pick one: Australia or Guam?  Which cuisine is better?

With a formidable landscape populated with deadly creatures, Australia is a land of people who know how to live life to the fullest.  Their take on the hamburger is a perfect reflection of that, packed with things like bacon and fried eggs that a more cautious culture might feel guilty about:

Burger w/ the lot assembly station.  Clockwise from upper left: onions, tomatoes, ketchup, lettuce, bacon, beets, pineapple, eggs, patties, buns.

Researching Australian cuisine was a challenge.  What is Australian cuisine, anyway?  We will surely face similar challenges with other melting pot nations in this competition — what is distinctly Australian about their food?  Kangaroo meat is available in supermarkets, and they put Vegemite on their toast, and we did manage to find a couple of Australian-origin dishes (like peach Melba and pavlova).

What did we find about Australian food?  The magazine features and cookbooks we looked at had things like mushroom risottos, rice pilafs, or Thai curries.  The thing that really defines Australian cuisine, it is reasonable to surmise, is mixing all the different waves of people that have ventured there over the years and taking the best parts of each culture, making them their own.  They probably have fantastic restaurants.

Guamanian food has utilized different aspects of the different cultures that have made the island home.  It is easy to see how ceviche and achiote, brought to Guam by the Spaniards by way of Mexico, have left their mark as kelaguen and red rice:

kelaguen
Kelaguen

The Guamanian plate is unique, though.  Chamorro barbecued chicken and tinaktak (ground meat cooked with coconut milk) retain a Guamanian identity of their own.

So, the big question remains — which do we think is better?  Which deserves to move one step closer to The World Cup of Food?

guam_flag1

Guam is our winner today.  Maybe it’s the contrast Guamanian food offers to our recent heavier fare from other cuisines, but we want to make more Guamanian food and share it with our readers.

Guam will face Singapore in the final qualifying round for a spot in The World Cup of Food.

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