Some dishes, like pizza from New York or gumbo from New Orleans, are so famous that you don’t need these types of posts to introduce them.
Alaska, however, features some of the most unique dishes in the country, you just probably won’t see them on many cooking shows. You will see it on your plates, though, as our ships all serve cuisine that’s local to the area.
The teeming wildlife and lush vegetation make for some of the freshest and most flavorful food on the planet. So we wanted to give you a head’s up on the food you could try if you journey over to Alaska:
1. King Crab
The food featured first is also the one that’s the hardest to catch (it’s the food hunted in Discovery Channel’s Deadliest Catch!). There’s actually three different types of King Crab: the Red King Crab is what’s most rare and so highly-prized across the world; the Blue King Crab is similar in taste (but slightly sweeter) and is some of the biggest in the world; then the Golden King Crab, which is the smallest of the three, but amongst the most abundant. The Blue and Red King Crabs are so big that just one can practically feed an entire family – you have to check it out yourself!
2. Reindeer Dogs
If you thought Chicago had good hot dogs, just wait until you venture to Alaska. You’ll probably see them on the streets before they’re served on a cruise ship, but they are one of the state’s most iconic foods. This treat is made from true Alaska caribou, and tastes similar to venison. Most people top them with glazed onions, mustard and cream cheese. Reindeer dogs are so delicious, they’re even being made and sold in other states (but with local game).
3. Alaskan Cod
You may see it labelled “Pacific Cod”; either way, this fish is filled with proteins and omega-3 fatty acids, making for one of the healthiest dinners around. Good news is it’s also an abundant fish species, unlike other types of seafood that are often over-fished. Eating Cod either as part of Fish n’ Chips or just grilled and seasoned is a true Alaskan way to eat.
Ever eaten whale for dinner? Well, now is your chance! Muktuk is a very traditional Alaskan treat that’s bite-sized pieces of frozen whale skin and blubber. It actually tastes like most other types of game, and is common amongst the Inuit and Chukchis.
5. Eskimo Ice Cream
Gotta save the dessert for last, right? Before we talk about the ice cream, we need to talk about its central ingredient: the berries (you didn’t think it was actual eskimos, did you?!). In that, these are some of the best berries in the world (including raspberries, blueberries, salmonberries, even ‘mossberries’ and lingonberries), and if you ever see locally made jam or cobbler, be sure to grab it immediately.
Now, about the ice cream. Ingredients for Eskimo Ice Cream (locally known as Aqutak) are: seal oil, reindeer fat, snow and wild Alaskan berries. Now you see why it’s so…Alaskan!
Alright, that’s your primer. Anything else, you’ll have to ask the chef yourselves!