Food has always been a gal­va­niz­ing bridge towards under­stand­ing her­itage and dif­fer­ent cul­tures.

Week what­ever dur­ing COVID con­fine­ment presents the per­fect storm to fly our food flags.

Leisure travel is off the table. Enjoy the world through the eyes of a chef or cook.

Col­or­ful assem­blage of plates from desir­able loca­tions feed more than the belly. Cap­rese salad, red, green and white– toma­toes, sweet basil and fresh moz­zarella — bring Italy to the table.

Pep­pers are an essen­tial Span­ish ingre­di­ent, whether they are fresh, roasted or fried. Served as a side dish or a tapa, red and yel­low are flag emblems of Spain. So too are dishes like gaz­pa­cho (cold tomato soup), romesco sauce or sofrito. Add color and fla­vor of pep­pers and toma­toes to sig­nify Span­ish influ­ences.

Cir­cle the globe with a week­night menu item that includes sea­sonal dishes from coun­tries of inter­est. Sum­mer corn and zuc­chini latkes move us to Israel for a light sup­per paired with a green salad. They’re per­fectly suit­able for week­end brunch with fruits and eggs cooked to order.

Inter­est­ing that pre­cious saf­fron is used in Indian main dishes and desserts. This color is rep­re­sented in the national flag. Exotic in color, fla­vor and aroma, take advan­tage of this very evoca­tive spice.

Steeped in mythol­ogy, mys­tery and rev­er­ence, saf­fron has its roots in Greek and Hindu rit­ual. Other spices and herbs can also trans­port the food trav­eler to sim­i­lar cul­tur­ally rich places.

In the United States, we have access to eater­ies and fresh ingre­di­ents from the world mar­ket­place. Immi­grants and res­i­dents alike can find food rep­re­sen­ta­tive from most other coun­tries.

Irish and British pubs, Asian spe­cific (Korean, Sichuan, Japan­ese or Viet­namese) restau­rants, and trendy Peru­vian or African cafes reflect con­sumer demand.

Cul­ture and cui­sine fit together in our national melt­ing pot. Food often is the first door opened to under­stand­ing indi­vid­u­als other than our­selves. The eclec­tic nature of Amer­i­can cui­sine makes for adven­tur­ous eat­ing.

Authen­tic sauces and core ele­ments give any dish the true essence of a par­tic­u­lar coun­try of ori­gin. Street foods tra­di­tion­ally typ­ify the entry point to explore new lands. Menu rota­tions adopt regional ingre­di­ents and unique prepa­ra­tion tech­niques.

Per­son­able aspects of food dis­cov­ery have been handed down through the gen­er­a­tions. Miss­ing out on hav­ing a Nonna or Yaya? No wor­ries. You tube your way through a recipe chal­lenge with some­one else’s beloved grand­mother.

Food jour­neys begin safely at home. Map out the tables and plot out the place set­tings. Pass­ports to far­away des­ti­na­tions awaken the senses. So does a famous dish from a for­eign land.

Tour the world from the heart of the kitchen. Hoist the food flags high. Dif­fer­ent and strange new eat­ing expe­ri­ences are wel­comed dur­ing this pre­car­i­ous time of repet­i­tive activ­ity.

To read the full Mar­ket Report, includ­ing this week’s mar­ket update, see below or click here.