Your favorite food in the world is probably something exciting, distinctive, tasty. Maybe a dish that smacks of your cultural heritage or a dish that tastes like your childhood. It might be the porterhouse steak you ate with your grandparents the night of your college graduation; it might be the green papaya salad you once ate visiting your cousin in Portland.
But if you poll 16,000 people in 17 countries around the world, as aid NGO Oxfam did in mid-April, the law of large numbers starts to kick in. Hence the today’s announcement of the world’s favorite food: pasta. Second and third place were the equally thrilling “meat” and “rice.” The global choices mirrored those of the US and UK quite closely, though some individual countries went zestier. The favorite food of Kenya was a maize porridge called ugali; Spaniards chose national rice dish paella. The strangest element of the survey results, though, may be the inclusion of ethnic categories alongside individual dishes—including “Italian.” At 9th, it held up surprisingly well, considering it had been stripped, by the terms of the survey, of both pizza and pasta.
Here’s the full list of the world’s favorite foods:
6. Fish and seafood