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Are Chowhounds only Americans? Or do we have an international presence?

w
Wyvern Feb 3, 2013 07:46 PM

I'd like to hear from people about where they are from, what regional specialties they like from where they are, and learn more about food cultures.

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  1. jrvedivici Feb 3, 2013 07:54 PM

    Take a look at the list of boards it's an international site.

    http://chowhound.chow.com/boards/all

    This doesn't include the Canadian boards.

    1. w
      Wyvern Feb 3, 2013 08:17 PM

      jrvedivici, Thank you...Yes,I did see those. But I was hoping for a little cross cultural talk in addition to speaking to an area locally. Forgive me, I'm probably not making myself clear. I like to hear about Cultural differences and ideas and commonalities also.

      1. m
        mwhitmore Feb 3, 2013 08:28 PM

        In some senses, Chowhounds are anti-American. In that much of American culture comes from the Puritan ethic that sees food as fuel, and pleasure as decadent. I realize that this does not answer the spirit of your post, but I observe that many other cultures are more Chowish.

        7 Replies
        1. re: mwhitmore
          jrvedivici Feb 3, 2013 08:30 PM

          You mean the entire world doesn't share our gluttonous approach to food and to its subsequent waste? I'm shocked!

          1. re: mwhitmore
            sal_acid Feb 4, 2013 05:31 AM

            Chowhounders also are elitist.

            1. re: mwhitmore
              w
              Wyvern Feb 12, 2013 08:27 AM

              On the contrary mwhitmore, I think your post is fascinating. I've never thought of that angle before.
              I read a British Mom Blog recently where she listed her weekly meals and they seemed pretty standard fare. Stuff I'd see in the US. A hamburger style strognov. Tacos. Turkey meatballs, wraps, chili, pizza. She had one page dedicated to what she called "American pancakes" with a recipe. Many of her followers read this one closely as they seemed to think it was a difficult specialty that they had trouble getting correct. She also had a recipe including peanut butter on something, which was interesting. Peanut butter making stealthy inroads? We often hear of specialty UK stores or international aisles, (I have a local store that includes some Australian and New Zealand items as well, (weetabix, notably). Do they have American food sections in other countries?

              1. re: Wyvern
                linguafood Feb 12, 2013 10:08 AM

                "Do they have American food sections in other countries?"

                Yep. Those generally include spray cheese, oreos, ccc, pancake mix, "bbq" sauce, etc.

                1. re: linguafood
                  MGZ Feb 12, 2013 10:24 AM

                  "ccc"?

                  1. re: MGZ
                    linguafood Feb 12, 2013 10:28 AM

                    Chocolate chip cookies.

                    1. re: linguafood
                      w
                      Wyvern Feb 12, 2013 09:50 PM

                      Well, that sounds horrid. I think I've heard lonely ex pat Americans bemoan things like corn bread mix, stuffing mix. Root beer, Peanut butter, Ice, and new york deli meat, and mexican food. Mexican food to some Americans is on par to good curry for UK folk. Some people really want GOOD mexican food. Not just sub par mexican, but good stuff and find it wanting in the UK. I know for a fact I could never make a curry to standard. I just don't have an organic enough feel for it.

            2. paulj Feb 3, 2013 08:57 PM

              http://www.alexa.com/siteinfo/www.cho...
              audience:
              70% usa
              6.8% canada
              3% uk
              3% india
              2% australia
              etc

              1. m
                MonMauler Feb 4, 2013 12:15 AM

                I'm American and love American food. I would imagine the far majority of CH users are American (but there is a decent international presence); however, I have noticed that most CH'ers are dismissive of American food, be it classical comfort-food American, Italian-American, Chinese-American, et al. I think high-minded foodie types, such as populate these boards, see American food as being, in general, "low brow."

                4 Replies
                1. re: MonMauler
                  sal_acid Feb 4, 2013 05:32 AM

                  Like I said. Many CHers are elitist.

                  1. re: sal_acid
                    p
                    PhilipS Feb 4, 2013 08:39 AM

                    Chowhounders seem to be a lot less elitist than some of the food bloggers we have in the UK. Many of the prolific ones are fixated by Michelin stars and adorn their blogs with copious photos and badly written text. It has become a major PR exercise with some of them chasing the limelight (and perhaps a free dinner). Their blogs are complemented with the Twitter and/or Facebook account and some have an almost sycophantic obsession with high profile chefs.

                    Sometimes the PR goes a bit wrong http://www.standard.co.uk/lifestyle/e...

                    Oh and I LOVE American food.

                  2. re: MonMauler
                    s
                    Steve Feb 12, 2013 02:30 PM

                    There's a healthy percentage of posts devoted to burgers, pizza, bbq, bagels, fried chicken, mac n cheese, buffalo wings, and all kinds of food.

                    Hyphenated food, as you might guess, is not going to satisfy many Chowhounds who hail from the country of origin or have visited that country. Not only does that make sense, but it is very common in and out of Chowhound.

                    then there is always a question of: Why post about something on Chowhound? People don't need help finding mediocre or average places, they want to hear about the exceptional.

                    For example, there may be a hundred Italian-American places in the area where I live, but if none of them stand out you'll hear nothing about them on Chowhound.

                    1. re: MonMauler
                      w
                      Wyvern Feb 13, 2013 08:13 AM

                      Perhaps they are. I however really appreciate good "American" food. Just not mediocre American food. That being said, I have an American palate. I enjoy really well made food in particular. However what passes for exceptional might not for someone else. Do you feel that the standard for looking for excellent food has an international standard? I have a west coast taste for Mexican food. I don't know if it would be considered exceptional to say, someone from Manchester,England. I I want really good steak and kidney pie and mushy peas, for instance, how would I know if they are 'excellent'.?

                    2. p
                      PhilipS Feb 4, 2013 01:00 AM

                      I'm from the UK. I haven't found any UK based food boards.

                      I like my food on the "plain" side. Fish and chips with mushy peas, roast beef, steak & kidney pie. All good traditional English cooking. I am a traditionalist and not a big lover of modernist cuisine or designer chefs.

                      We have some wonderful dishes in the UK, but it is sometimes seen as the lesser cuisine by our European neighbours.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: PhilipS
                        MGZ Feb 4, 2013 02:19 AM

                        "Fish and chips with mushy peas, roast beef, steak & kidney pie."

                        Funny thing is, although I see English food as a "lesser cuisine", that list sounds pretty damn good to me.

                      2. carolinadawg Feb 4, 2013 05:14 AM

                        You might find this thread, and the ones linked in it, interesting:

                        http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/882786

                        1. ursy_ten Feb 4, 2013 05:50 AM

                          *waving from Australia*

                          I was born here, but my Dad's from Singapore. My grandmother was from Indonesia. She was an absolutely amazing cook. Between her and my wonderful mother, I had an extremely blessed culinary childhood.

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