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This was driven in part by the many chefs and television personalities who contributed to the rise of the culinary arts in America. Modern American cuisine includes a focus on fast food, as well as take-out food, which is often ethnic. There is also a vibrant culinary scene in the country surrounding televised celebrity chefs.
Highlights of American cuisine include milkshakes, barbecue, and a wide range of fried foods. Many quintessential American dishes are unique takes on food originally from other culinary traditions, including pizza, hot dogs, and Tex-Mex. Regional highlights include a range of fish dishes in the coastal states, gumbo, and cheesesteak. American cuisine has specific foods that are eaten on holidays, such as a turkey at thanksgiving dinner or Christmas dinner.
Fast, junk, processed – when it comes to American food, the country is best known for the stuff that’s described by words better suited to greasy, grinding industrial output. But citizens of the USA have an impressive appetite for good stuff, too.
To celebrate its endless culinary creativity, we’re throwing our list of 50 most delicious American food items at you. We know you’re going to want to throw back.
If life gives you limes, don’t make limeade, make a Key lime pie. We love French fries, but for an American food variation on the potato theme, one beloved at Sonic drive-ins and school cafeterias everywhere, consider the Tater Tot.
Notice it often has the registered trademark – these commercial hash brown cylinders are indeed proprietary to the Ore-Ida company. If you’d been one of the Grigg brothers who founded Ore-Ida, you’d have wanted to come up with something to do with leftover slivers of cut-up potatoes, too.
The official state pie of Florida, this sassy tart has made herself a worldwide reputation, which started in – where else? – the Florida Keys, from whence come the tiny limes that gave the pie its name.
Aunt Sally, a cook for Florida’s first self-made millionaire, ship salvager William Curry, gets the credit for making the first Key lime pie in the late 1800s. But you might also thank Florida sponge fisherman for likely originating the concoction of key lime juice, sweetened condensed milk, and egg yolks, which could be “cooked” (by a thickening chemical reaction of the ingredients) at sea.
They added some flour and seasoning and shaped the mash into tiny tots and put them on the market in 1956. A little more than 50 years later, America is eating about 32 million kilos of these taters annually.
Dumped in hot oil or simply torn from their packaging, Twinkies endear with their name (inspired by a billboard advertising Twinkle Toe Shoes), their ladyfinger shape (pierced three times to inject the filling), and their evocations of lunchtime recess. They were temporarily taken off the shelves between November 2012 to July 2013 – when Hostess filed for bankruptcy. Now they are back and going strong.
The childhood Sunday family dinner of baby boomers everywhere, pot roast claims a sentimental favorite place in the top 10 of American comfort foods. There’s a whole generation that would be lost without it.
Beef brisket, bottom or top round, or chuck set in a deep roasting pan with potatoes, carrots, onions, and whatever else your mom threw in to be infused with the meat’s simmering juices, the pot roast could be anointed with red wine or even beer, then covered and cooked on the stovetop or in the oven.
Once upon a frontier time, miners (called “sourdoughs” for surviving on the stuff) and settlers carried sourdough starter (more reliable than other leavening) in pouches around their necks or on their belts.
Thank goodness that’s not the way they do it at Boudin Bakery, which has been turning out the bread that bites back in the City by the Bay since 1849.
Added some crisp bacon, swiped from a busy chef.” The salad went onto the menu and straight into the heart of Hollywood.
Dehydrated meat shriveled almost beyond recognition – an unlikely source of so much gustatory pleasure, but jerky is a high-protein favorite of backpackers, road trippers, and snackers everywhere.
It’s American food the way we like our wilderness grub – tough and spicy.
We like the creation myth that says it’s the direct descendant of American Indian pemmican, which mixed fire-cured meat with animal fat. Beef, turkey, chicken, venison, buffalo, even ostrich, alligator, yak, and emu. Peppered, barbecued, hickory-smoked, honey glazed. Flavored with teriyaki, jalapeno, lemon pepper, chili.
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