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7.22.2011

America's food heritage

Every culture has their own bread- is ours destined to be tasteless white bread?
I'm getting directly to the point on this one- America ostensibly has no food heritage.  If one had to pinpoint something, it would either be junk food- fast food, white flour, refined sugar- or the lack of a single food heritage, meaning that we all have our own particular traditional (or not) foods that have been passed down from our own ancestors as a part of our heritage that we have adapted and shared with others, even others of different heritage.  So in our household for example, which is of Irish, Norwegian, and German descent (I know, how much more arian can a home be??? Explains the toe headed children, though) we have sauerkraut, krumkake, and corned beef from our own heritage,
but we also eat curtido, kimchi, pupusas, gyro, tamales (I'm including this even though I refuse to make them, because my sister does), mesir wat and injera, kosher sour pickles, eggplant Parmesan, coconut curry... and tens of dishes that blend the flavors found in these dishes in ways that would probably make them unrecognizable to their cultures of origin.  And now, in the information age, we have access not only to the culture of our friends and neighbors but of the entire world.  So when I want to make authentic Hungarian Sun Pickles all I need to do is look up the recipe on the internet.  Or when I want to find a source of fresh picked strawberries or pastured local beef I know where to turn.

So I reject the first possible option- the heritage that includes cheetoes, Coke, Pop Ice, fast food, white bread, deep fried (not that I'm totally anti fried...), corn sweeteners, and industrial farming.  However, these unsavory aspects of our culture will remain until we, as a society, reject them and stop throwing our money at them.  So what do you want America's food heritage to be?

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