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Swing State Menu for Election Day

Been noodling on a swing state menu for election day and I'm looking for some help. So far I have hurricanes (FL), 3 or 5 way chile (OH) and ham (VA). Anyone have other suggestions, esp if you are in a swing state?

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  1. I never thought I'd be in a "swing" but here we are! If you want to do a MN dish, go for tuna noodle casserole, or another "hotdish" using cooked pasta, browned ground meat, canned cream soup and whatever (usually frozen or canned) vegies you want to throw in. If you want to do Tater Tots, you're on your way.

    Go Vote!


    4 Replies
    1. re: cayjohan

      You've been a swing state for quite some time! During my previous stint there, I can't even begin to count how many volunteers took great joy in (re)introducing me to hotdish, tater tots and all.

      1. re: cayjohan

        A brilliant idea. (I say as a fellow Minnesotan.)

        1. re: cayjohan

          You could add a chicken dish....just to throw in a "Big Bird" reference....

          1. re: soupkitten

            We're not really swinging anymore... but you could do beer or fondue, too.

          2. For Nevada, if you're feeling adventurous, you could try pine nut soup or a pine nut cake. The pinon pine is one of our state trees. Pine nuts were a staple food of the Washoe tribe, and people still gather them today.

            1 Reply
            1. re: GEC

              Good suggestion. I've been trying to think of something uniquely Nevadan and have had no luck...even after almost 30 years of living in this state.

              If you could get some of those chocolate coins you could buy a toy slot machine and spread the coins on a plate surrounding them....yeah, yeah, I know, I'm stretching!

              I know: those liquor-filled chocolates that they sell in the airports here. Ethel M is the name....

            2. how about

              1. scrapple for PA

              2. buckeyes for OH, the buckeye state (i.e. http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Buckeyes...


              3. "blizzard" milkshakes or rocky mountain oysters for colorado?

              4. and of course, pulled pork, eastern n. carolina style for NC!

              7 Replies
              1. re: cimui

                I think shoo-fly-pie would be more appropriate for PA, Smuckers, for OH.

                1. re: Passadumkeg

                  hah! you're on a roll, tonight.

                  (shoofly pie actually looks pretty delicious, btw. i'd never heard of it!)

                  1. re: cimui

                    only slightly off topic: years ago, hubby's wallet was stolen in Rome. When he went to the American Embassy for help, they asked where in the US he grew up, and when he told them he grew up in Camp Hill (in Central PA, outside of Harrisburg) they asked questions about Central PA to try and verify that he really was who he said he was, and really from that part of the world.

                    You guessed it: one of the questions was 'What is shoo-fly pie?" :-)

                2. re: cimui

                  Yes, you could make scrapple for PA, but noone would want to eat it! Grey and only marginally a food product.

                  You could try Philly cheese steaks if you can get a good italian roll and chipped beef. Oh and don't forget the melted Whiz!
                  (In Phila we never ate or heard of shoofly pie . . . . but I guess that's the much maligned center of the state -- between Phila and Pittsburgh is . . . Alabama!)

                  1. re: NYchowcook

                    That area is also Sometimes referred to as "pennsyltucky"- no offense intended to residents of the great state of Kentucky.
                    Scrapple is made by a number of meat purveyors... Hatfield, Rapa, Berks ( woot!), and Habbersett, many interestingly are out of NJ not Pa. It is an acquired taste? to be sure. And everyone has a brand preference. Skip it and go fof a hoagie or IMO the roast pork with rabe and sharp provolone is a level up taste-wise when compared to a cheesesteak.

                  2. re: cimui

                    philadelphia style ice cream.
                    Lebanon bologna (yum!yum!yum!)

                    1. re: cimui

                      Buckeyes are a fantastic idea. They're fun to make and eye-catching.

                    2. New Mexico is easy, pick anything with chilies, maybe rellenos, or enchiladas are easy for a group, pulled pork for the Carolinas, I'd go for something Cuban for Florida rather than hurricanes, New Hampshire=maple syrup??, Colorado is hard too...Rocky Mountain Oysters?? Sounds like a lot of cooking, I hope you're voting by mail:)

                      3 Replies
                      1. re: yamalam

                        Portions of NH are on the Atlantic Ocean, so a seafood chowder might be appropriate (and easy to prepare in advance). As to Colorado, I always think of its days as a cattle market site, so perhaps some sort of steak or other beef dish. And, you probably need to add some sort of dishes to represent Iowa and Missouri.

                        1. re: masha

                          or corn chowder for NH! serve it with a side of ben & jerry's -- since VT is right next door.

                          1. re: cimui

                            i think corn chowder would be a good choice for iowa/minnesota.

                      2. New Hampshire:
                        MAPLE MOCHA PUDDING (from The Maple SYrup Cookbook)
                        3 T cornstarch
                        1 T instant coffee or espresso (powder form)
                        1 t cocoa powder
                        pinch salt
                        3 egg yolks
                        3 cups milk
                        1/2 c maple syrup (preferably grade B)
                        1 T butter, cut in little pieces
                        1 t vanilla extract
                        Whisk first 4 ingredients in large, thick-bottomed pot. Slightly whisk egg in different bowl, then whisk in milk and maple. Gently whisk the liquid into the dry, beginning to heat on mediium-high. Bring slowly to boil, stirring gently throughout and scraping sides. When it starts boiling, continue stirring for one minute. Remove from heat and stir in butter and vanilla. Ladle into 4-5 serving dishes. If you don't want a skin atop the puddings, top each with a piece of wax paper cut to size. Let cool to room temp before chilling. Serve plain or with flavored whipped cream.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: greygarious

                          Growing up in NH, we always loved apple pie with sharp cheddar. I realize VT takes credit for that dish all the time and perhaps they're right, but they are the farthest thing from a swing state as I can imagine. : )

                        2. For Indiana you could do either a breaded pork tenderloin sandwich or kettle corn.

                          1. Maybe Philly cheese steaks for Pennsylvania?

                            1. Yes, Philly cheesesteaks! We stayed in a beautiful hotel in Quito in the spring and would you believe on the room service menu they had Philadelphia cheesesteaks! It was so weird and funny.

                              1. It is a close race in WV. I suggest sausage gravy and biscuits.

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: lhb78

                                  Pepperoni rolls are also common in West Va.

                                  I live in Ohio, but Cincinnati chili is not common outside of the SW part of the state. Pirogi and other eastern European foods are very common in the northern part of the state.

                                2. You might also want to think about getting creative with your spirits - here in VA we have some nice wines you could choose from

                                  1. Missouri: Legend has it, anyway that the hot dog on a bun, the hamburger, iced tea, peanut butter and the waffle ice cream cone were “invented” at the 1904 St. Louis World’s Fair. More likely is that they became popularized there.

                                    Ohio: Cincinnati chili. Cincinnati was once known as Porkopolis.

                                    Virginia: Country ham, including Smithfield; peanuts.

                                    Colorado: Mountain oysters; game; trout.

                                    Indiana: Breaded pork chops; fried biscuits with apple butter.

                                    Florida: Conch stew; Gulf seafood; freshwater bass.

                                    Wisconsin: Cheese, of course; brats; beer.

                                    North Carolina: Barbeque with a vinegary sauce.

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: mpalmer6c

                                      St. Louis is in Missouri, and the big thing there is fried ravioli.....

                                    2. For Colorado, I think of buffalo burgers. When you drive around Colorado you always see all those bison farms, and that was the first place I had a buffalo burger. They seemed to have them on every menu. Otherwise, a good CO microbrew to go with all the other great food.

                                      Agreed that when I think of OH I don't think of chili - we lived in Cleveland so stuffed cabbage and pierogies are more like it for that part of the state. Or pork, ala "Hot Sauce Williams".

                                      1 Reply
                                      1. re: MrsCheese

                                        It's a political event. Rocky Mountain Oysters; BIG ONES!

                                      2. It's funny - my wife and I are doing the exact same thing, and I just stumbled upon your post. The only things we've got that aren't here are: 1) apparently root beer floats were invented in CO; 2) beer: be it sierra nevada or yuengling or coors or bud, you have a few decent choices (and some less than decent) from swing states, and 3) key lime pie for FL.

                                        Good luck!

                                        1. You can get cookie cutters in the shape of every American state (except Hawaii) from Hill's Kitchen in DC. They also have elephant and donkey cutters as well. Might be a fun dessert idea.

                                          1 Reply
                                          1. re: bonefreakchef

                                            We're in PA and it is a swing state. I suggest hot soft pretzels with spicy mustard and cheesesteaks. I have found the Philly cheesesteak to have an international reputation. I've seen it on menus as far away as Quito.

                                            1. I'm thinking WAFFLES would pretty much wrap it all up.