Friday, January 9, 2009

Regional Food Affairs

Occasionally, everyone has affairs. I figure, if Bill Clinton can, why can't I?
Thus, my regional food affair.
Not only am I in love with the food of my countrymen (that's the Pennsylvania Dutch, famous for pot pie and scrapple, and Italians, famous for all good food, everywhere), but I also love the food of other regions, like wherever Brie comes from (I know it's France!) and Mexico (mmm, tortillas!).
Mostly, though, I love food from home, wherever home may be. TheBoy made a particularly apt statement while we visited family for the holidays "back east." He mentioned that we are now so firmly citizens of both the east and west coasts that we can be those annoying jerks who crave foods "from home" no matter where we are. In PA, we sorely missed our beloved In-N-Out, but here in Cali, I can't even begin to tell you how much we miss good pizza, hoagies, cheesesteaks, and, above all, Wawa. ::sigh:: My stomach growls even thinking about all the delicious Amoroso rolls, salami, provolone, capicolla, and vinegar. ::sigh again:: So, when we visited, we stopped by all the best places to get a taste of home. First stop, Wawa, of course!

We got the full meal: lemonade iced tea, an Italian hoagie with oil, vinegar, and all the veggies, and TASTYKAKES. We hesitated between visions of butterscotch crimpets and kandykakes, but had to stick with the latter. Why? Because they had the EAGLES on them!
Only later did we find crimpets with Eagles logos, too. Wow!
Later, we went to Pepper Mill (you who don't know.. I'm sorry) and I got a cheese steak while TheBoy got an Italian grinder. There are no pictures for the same reason there are no leftovers -- too good! Even better about our Pepper Mill trip: a good friend of mine works there and when we "complained" about the food, he gave us a full refund. *wink*

Despite the fact that I love Wawa and everything it serves, I have to carefully balance my cravings with the realization that almost everything that Wawa serves is totally unhealthy, unsustainable, and not always all that tasty. Yes, I am talking about Wawa coffee. Ew.

What I do love, though, is how food becomes such a vital part of a place. I couldn't imagine the Greater Philadelphia area without Wawa or cheesesteaks, just as I couldn't picture Los Angeles without In-N-Out and taco trucks. The feeling of community is irreplaceable.
What food is vital to your region? Share in comments!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I live in south east Kentucky and the foods I associate with my home state would have to be fried chicken, salmon patties, soup beans and corn bread (no sweet cornbread for us!), tuna or chicken salad, fried okra, home made mush melon ice cream (no summer would be complete without it!), and of course, a good Kentucky bourbon to wash it all down with! lol

It's all good home cookin' made by generations of poor mountain folk. Lol, I suppose I should add moonshine to that list, too.