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Famous Regional Food you find embarrassing or disgusting?

I stumbled across a thread that mentioned Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Ale as the best beer ever and just rolled my eyes. As a Kentuckian, I hardly know a soul who drinks it - it just seems to me to be a touristy thing, and an expensive one at that. I'm not trying to yuck anyone's yum (there are certainly people who enjoy that beer, and good for them), but are there any foods or beverages your area is famous for that you can't stand? Visiting relatives beg for it while you gag?

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    1. re: viperlush

      wait, can we discuss? what's disgusting about lobster?

      I'm hardpressed to think of a new england regional foodstuff that i don't like. i even like rhode island clam chowder!

        1. re: Bob W

          So weird, i was just talking about moxie this weekend when we were at a place on the cape that served it. i don't think i hate it, but i probably wouldn't seek it out. so i could probably do without. teddy ballgame liked it, right? (or at least shilled for it, iirc). it's like robitussin without the robotrip.....

              1. re: Bob W

                Moxie is great. Especially when you can get the limited edition 1960's recipe in the glass bottles each summer from the Moxie museum in Union Maine.

              2. re: eLizard

                Nothing in particular. Just not a fan of the taste or texture. It wasn't something I grew up eating. So I guess the thrill of getting cheap lobsters and lobster based dishes doesnt do it for me.

                But send me to the Eastern Shore and I will gladly eat anything with crab.

                1. re: viperlush

                  In my house, Dungeness crab trumps lobster every single time.

                  1. re: jpc8015

                    FYI: Jacques Cousteau loved all varieties of seafood - except crab. When once asked about his crab aversion, he replied, "I work down zehr. I see what zay eat."
                    CP

                        1. re: emglow101

                          I'll see you 200 and raise two fat back fins off a big fat fresh blue crab. I prefer them warm with butter and a little Cajun seasonings.

                          1. re: James Cristinian

                            I'm all in. Two large claws and the body meat, with drawn butter and crab cakes.

                      1. re: jpc8015

                        I'm with you. I have eaten a few lobster and I just don't get the craving that many people have for them. Id much rather have many varieties of crab or even a fried cod dinner instead of that aquatic cockroach that we call an Atlantic lobster.

                        They seem tasteless to me.

                        1. re: Kelli2006

                          I feel the same way about stone crab. When I lived in Florida, stone crab was quite raved about and sold almost everywhere. I think it's wrong to just eat one part of an animal, and much prefer other types of crab that are fully intact, and not purposely declawed.

                          1. re: abfan105

                            You do know that the rest of the crab is tossed back into the water so it can grow another claw, right? It's not like finning sharks - the crab survives the procedure.

                        1. re: viperlush

                          Funny, I'm the exact opposite. Crab cakes, softshells, U steam and pick; OK but nothing to go out of my way for.

                        2. re: eLizard

                          pfff lobster - it's just 19th c. prison food...

                          1. re: hill food

                            I recall it was Coco Channel who turned it into haute cuisine, not so? (Whoever....thank you!!!)
                            CP

                          2. re: eLizard

                            Is that the not-creamy kind? I loved that.

                          3. re: viperlush

                            having grown up on Cape Cod, I do give in to the occaisional lobster, but 2 that will never pass my lips:

                            Herring Roe (or any herring for that matter)
                            Bluefish

                            Closer to home today, while I like the redbugs, a crab whatever leaves me cold

                            1. re: FriedClamFanatic

                              I guess you've just never had a good preparation of herring.

                              My friend who runs a great sushi restaurant in Rockland, ME recently got hold of fresh herring and lightly marinated/pickled them in a sake/vinegar brine and served as sashimi. Out of this world!

                              Also grilled or battered, fried herring are great.

                              1. re: FriedClamFanatic

                                It is so interesting how ones yuck is another's yum. I ate smoked blue fish at every opportunity when spending time on block island. Yet I hate many of my regional favorites others enjoy.

                              1. re: grampart

                                Gaaah! Yes, a thousand times yes! We used to live in Northern KY, so I'd also like to add Goetta.

                                1. re: NonnieMuss

                                  Couldn't help but noticing that the 2nd and 3rd entries come from around Cincinnati....

                                  1. re: NonnieMuss

                                    Native No. Kentuckian, but I cannot stand either goetta or grits. (Grew up near Cincy, where goetta is king.)

                                    1. re: grampart

                                      Even worse than Cincinnati chili in Cincinnati is seeing some diner near where I live outside of Cincinnati promoting how they serve "authentic" Cincinnati chili.

                                      No thank you.

                                      1. re: cresyd

                                        and all that spaghetti on the floor in some of the places, gotta be a lawsuit waiting to happen.

                                      2. re: grampart

                                        I lived in Cincinnati for about five years. It's where I learned to love chili. Nothing replaces it. If you dont care for it, more for me! Thank you!

                                        1. re: Fydeaux

                                          Agreed--when we moved west, relatives used to send me packets of Skyline Cincinnati chili powder mix.

                                          "Chili parlors" are the first food places I hit when we return to the area. (Then Graeter's.)

                                          1. re: pine time

                                            Hell yes to Graeter's. I even liked it before Oprah!

                                            1. re: NonnieMuss

                                              Oh, heavens yes, before Oprah. Downtown Cincinnati, on 4th, when I was in h.s. And that's been 100 years ago!

                                        2. re: grampart

                                          For those of us in the - Cincinnati Chili is Gross camp - what do you do when visitors really want to try it and in particular want to go to Skyline (where there really aren't so many other food options of note)?

                                          I went with a friend once (who knew of my distaste and thus found the situation hilarious), but usually encourage things like "this is a great option for you at X time when you're doing something not with me".

                                          1. re: grampart

                                            Never had it but sounds awesome to me. What's wrong with it?

                                            1. re: joonjoon

                                              nothings really wrong with it, it's just not what most think of as 'chili' (although good luck nailing down a definitive of THAT and later we can chase a greased pig around the yard)

                                              1. re: hill food

                                                In addition to that it's also definitely within the category of gut-bomb diner food. And if that version of 'gut-bomb diner food' isn't your cup of tea, it doesn't really leave you feeling so fantastic post meal.

                                                Pancakes aren't my #1 favorite food in the world, but if I'm in a situation where are pancakes the meal - I can partake and not feel later "why on earth did I do that". Cincinnati chili - not so much.

                                            2. Close to disgusting - sweet tea. For the life of me, I don't understand why even McDs is now serving it. Blech.

                                              24 Replies
                                              1. re: c oliver

                                                Really? Do you drink iced tea unsweetened? Or are you saying most sweet tea is just too sweet?

                                                1. re: carolinadawg

                                                  I grew up in Atlanta and nobody in my family fixed sweet tea. Unsweetened with lemon.

                                                  1. re: c oliver

                                                    I order iced tea half & half with lemon.

                                                    1. re: c oliver

                                                      I do half and half, but unsweetened just isn't palatable to me.

                                                          1. re: Jay F

                                                            Well, a half and half tea at my club is half tea, half lemonade.

                                                            I am guessing it has different ingredients other places.

                                                            1. re: cleobeach

                                                              That's called an Arnold Palmer in W. Pa.

                                                                1. re: Jay F

                                                                  And he was smart enough to start bottling it! (or license it or whatever his arrangement is)

                                                                  I wonder if it is an old-style golf course drink?

                                                                  1. re: cleobeach

                                                                    I don't know. It may be from the Latrobe CC. I've always heard it's simply what he likes to drink.

                                                                  2. re: Jay F

                                                                    Half sweet half unsweet. Very common request here in GA.

                                                              1. re: Jay F

                                                                Hi Jay,

                                                                I agree that iced should just be tea that's cold, or iced. Thing is, I drink my hot tea sweetened. So my iced tea is just the same. That seems only natural.

                                                                But "sweetened tea" and "sweet tea" are two different animals. "Sweet tea" is too sweet for me. I'm a half and half girl.

                                                                1. re: DuffyH

                                                                  I don't drink anything "sweet" or "sweetened." None in coffee, tea (before or after), hot or cold, nor do I drink soda or juice, except sometimes Coke w/delivery pizza. I guess I prefer to eat my sugar rather than drink it.

                                                                2. re: Jay F

                                                                  I drink an enormous amount of hot tea, and I love it unadulterated.

                                                                  The southern sweettea thing is just a way to consume caffeine and sugar as much and as quickly as possible!

                                                                  1. re: sandylc

                                                                    I think you're right, Sandy. And I'd so much rather *eat* dessert.

                                                                    1. re: sandylc

                                                                      Hi Sandy,

                                                                      Southern sweet tea is way too sweet. Half and half is a very common request in restaurants.

                                                                  2. re: c oliver

                                                                    Do you find that iced tea sometimes tastes of ... [wait for it]
                                                                    green peas?

                                                                    I've learned that "old tea" will taste like peas. Much more noticeable in unsweetened.

                                                                    1. re: Kris in Beijing

                                                                      What is "old tea"??? :) It never stays around very long. I pretty much don't like sweet drinks. I don't find it thirst quenching and when I drink iced tea, it's to quench my thirst.

                                                                      1. re: c oliver

                                                                        I used to work retain at a mall and the Food Court places would give mall employees free refills on the day of purchase.
                                                                        I'd start my day [usually 8 a.m.] with a LG tea-- it was often Old Tea in the metal urn from yesterday.

                                                                    2. re: c oliver

                                                                      If I accidentally take a drink of sweet tea, I find myself trying to spit it out almost before my brain has quite registered what it is. Something vile and unholy to me about the taste of any sweetened tea- black, green, any kind. I don't know why.

                                                                    3. Banana pudding is about the only southern regional "specialty" that I don't really enjoy.

                                                                      1. Peameal bacon sandwich - not embarrassing or disgusting, just meh. Just read a yelp review from a visitor to Toronto: "salty meat on a dry bun". Yup, that about covers it.

                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                        1. When I lived in St Louis I tried a couple of times to find the "good" toasted ravioli and finally gave up. Also Budweiser.

                                                                          13 Replies
                                                                          1. re: ennuisans

                                                                            what? was provel and Imo's considered too cheap a shot?

                                                                            1. re: hill food

                                                                              But I like Imo's. Heck I like Cecil Whitaker's.

                                                                              1. re: lemons

                                                                                lemons - but when it hits... yes too much dreck out there, I think there ought to be a court-ordered limit on how many places can offer it. makes folks lazy and used to sub-standard. it should be made regulated like many German city-states did with beers in the 1500's(ish).

                                                                                1. re: hill food

                                                                                  Yep. A recent visit to Anthonino's Taverna reminded me that toasted ravioli is actually really good stuff. They make their own and it's a whole different thing than the rock-hard, hollow pasta squares I'd got used to...but...St. Paul sandwiches, I keep hearing that they're a St. Louis 'speciality', so I finally ordered on. Now, I'd never had one, I'm not sure I know anyone who had ever had one, but I was up for it. Eh. Okay. Not great. I don't think I need another one in this lifetime.

                                                                                  1. re: tonifi

                                                                                    see toni, your problem is that I suspect you don't smoke pot. as if you did (or if I did for that matter) a St. Paul would suddenly make a lot of irrational sense (and subsequent regrets).

                                                                                    1. re: hill food

                                                                                      Ah. You have guessed my shameful secret. It always made me cough...

                                                                                      1. re: hill food

                                                                                        I'm curious to learn what a St. Paul sandwich consists of - explain please - thank you

                                                                                        1. re: jacquelyncoffey

                                                                                          white bread, omelet with varying Chinese vegetables and maybe a little pork. Egg food yung without sauce but on bread.

                                                                                      2. re: tonifi

                                                                                        I only recently heard of the St. Paul Sandwich. After only reading the ingredients, I'm ashamed that the guy who first made it named it after St. Paul. (I have worked in St. Paul for many years, only now I mostly telecommute.)

                                                                                        1. re: tonifi

                                                                                          I had one once and it reminded me of the fried egg sandwich with mayo I grew up eating. If nothing else they are something for that one person in the group who isn't in the mood for Chinese that night.

                                                                                          1. re: ennuisans

                                                                                            Ooh, a fried egg sandwich is a fave of ours.

                                                                                            1. re: c oliver

                                                                                              c - take that fried egg sandwich and run with it about 3 blocks too far. it's a cross between egg foo yung with touches of a cubano served on white bread, I once saw it taken into deep-fried Monte Cristo land. few who have seen the horror live to tell of it.

                                                                                  2. I don't hate Chicago deep dish pizza but I don't get the love either. The ingredients are typically excellent, but I feel that the pastry-like crust of the classic deep dish is all wrong for those flavors. I don't really know how it became the iconic Chicago food but everyone wants to try it when they come visit.

                                                                                    In my mind the Chicago specialty that really deserves to be famous is the Italian beef sandwich.

                                                                                    13 Replies
                                                                                    1. re: RealMenJulienne

                                                                                      I moved to the Chicago area and the beloved Deep Dish is gross . . .it's not even cooked all the way - the crust nor the sauce. What Pizza Hut serves as deep dish is way better than the stuff out here.

                                                                                      1. re: blythe

                                                                                        My dearly departed mom once had Chicago deep dish and likened it to someone having spilled tomato sauce on a pillow. I concur.
                                                                                        CP

                                                                                        1. re: blythe

                                                                                          Even in the "thick" Chicago pizza category, there are sub-divisions. I am not a fan of the "classic" deep dish and stuffed pizza joints like Malnatis, Giordano's, etc because they all use a fatty, dense crust that's almost like shortbread. It's the wrong vehicle for pizza flavors in my opinion. But here and there around town there are thick pizzas which I quite like. For example Pequod's and D'Amatos bakery make excellent pan pizzas which have a crisp, greasy under crust combined with a stretchy, bubbly crumb. These are the Chicago pizza places worth celebrating.

                                                                                          1. re: RealMenJulienne

                                                                                            Well in fairness it was invented by a Texan

                                                                                        2. re: RealMenJulienne

                                                                                          Agreed on the beef.

                                                                                          I think a Lou's deep dish can be a thing of beauty, but the Chicago "Stuffed" pizza is flat out gross. More ppl really need to know about Chicago style "Tavern Thin Crust."

                                                                                          I also think the "Chicago Style" dog needs to lose the green relish. That stuff is embarrassingly gross, imo.

                                                                                          One more thing that fits the bill: the fake, baked "bbq" ribs slathered in sugary sauce, and then braised in the oven. There's a lot of real/good bbq in Chicago popping up, and there has also been a Chicago Style bbq for a while that deserves to be recognized (tips/links/spares.) Why those places that are slinging baked pork became somewhat famous as "Chicago BBQ" is beyond me.

                                                                                          1. re: gordeaux

                                                                                            I'm no BBQ purist, except for this one issue - if I am offered BBQ as a choice, at some point it needs to have done time on a low heat smoke. you can play with the rub and sauce and the when/how for those all you want, but the slow smoke seems to be the one underlying unifying factor.

                                                                                              1. re: gordeaux

                                                                                                Are baked ribs what are being passed as Chicago-style these days? When I think Chicago BBQ, I think rib tips: the the burnt ends of the Hog Butcher for the World.

                                                                                                1. re: JungMann

                                                                                                  Two schools, JungMann. When I think of Chicago q, it's tips, spares, and links. Some call it "SouthSide" BBQ. BUT, there's so many places on the "north" side that are famous for their baked bbq ribs, that within the city/burbs, some ppl think bbq is a slab of baby backs baked in bbq sauce. I'm sure plenty of folks from places that know bbq have come to Chicago and been pointed to places like Twin Anchors, Fireplace, Portillo's, pretty much any Greek diner for "The Best BBQ Ribs," and gotten a plate full of braised pork on bones, slathered in candy sauce, that no smoke ever touched.

                                                                                                  1. re: gordeaux

                                                                                                    rib tips seem to be more of a 'soul' food item, quite common in StL, usually served with the expected sides. initially the tips were clipped off the ribs during dressing and discarded but lots of people saw their value and flavor. around here they are often baked in BBQ sauce, but nobody calls them BBQ, just 'tips'.

                                                                                                    so maybe there's a bit of a cross-pollination going on here, tips of ribs, but mostly baked.

                                                                                                    1. re: hill food

                                                                                                      In Chicago, most places DO bbq the tips. It's normally the baby back ribs that are baked. Spares and tips are usually 'qued in the Chicago q joints.

                                                                                                    2. re: gordeaux

                                                                                                      I always considered baby back ribs to be its own thing. A safe bet at an old-school neighborhood restaurant like Gale Street Inn or the ubiquitous Greek dinner. I had to look up whether Carson's even advertised itself as a barbecue spot.

                                                                                                      Because if it's barbecue I want -- I'm not heading to Carson's or a restaurant with 30 different items on the menu. I'm heading to some hole in the wall that sells your choice of ribs, tips, links or a combo and serves up your order in a Styrofoam box with fries and a slice of white bread. Rib tips were always the stand out item to order. I always think of home on the rare occasion I see them for sale outside Chicagoland.

                                                                                                  2. re: gordeaux

                                                                                                    LOVE Chicago style dogs! But more sport peppers and less relish works for me.

                                                                                                  1. re: grampart

                                                                                                    There are diff styles of bread pudding? off to the google. :)

                                                                                                      1. re: grampart

                                                                                                        Isn't bread pudding "custardy" by definition? That's the way I like it, whatever else makes its way into the dish.

                                                                                                        1. re: Jay F

                                                                                                          The custardy stuff don't look like this.

                                                                                                           
                                                                                                          1. re: grampart

                                                                                                            "This" doesn't look exactly like bread pudding, either, leading me to believe in the possibility of regional variations.

                                                                                                              1. re: grampart

                                                                                                                I like it to look like this:

                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                              2. re: Jay F

                                                                                                                Looks exactly like any bread pudding I ever had

                                                                                                          2. re: grampart

                                                                                                            Isn't it like turkey stuffing - whatever you want it to be, or whatever gramma made?

                                                                                                            1. re: lemons

                                                                                                              In my house it is whatever we have on hand. There is no direct recipe.

                                                                                                              1. re: jpc8015

                                                                                                                When I was in college, I worked at a diner. The bread pudding was made from stale bread, of course, and eggs and milk and sugar, and also -- any leftover fruit pie around.

                                                                                                                It was great! Pieces of cinnamon-y apple and cherries an rhubarb... and bits of pastry, too...

                                                                                                                I'd try to make it that way, too, but "leftover" and "pie" are contradictory at my house.

                                                                                                                  1. re: coll

                                                                                                                    Once made it with several fruit-filled danish that had gotten deathly stale and made sure the colored fillings peeked through the top. Gorgeous.

                                                                                                          3. re: jujuthomas

                                                                                                            Bread pudding is far better when made with Stale French Bread.
                                                                                                            Just like Pain Perdu

                                                                                                        2. I live in Pittsburgh, where "Pittsburgh style" has come to mean "has fries on or in it." I have never once set foot in Primanti's.

                                                                                                          4 Replies
                                                                                                          1. re: Jay F

                                                                                                            I agree, Primanti's is Ok but I don't see the big draw. I rather go to the "O" for a hot dog and thier fries.

                                                                                                            I do miss the variety of food available in Pittsburgh. Southern NE can be quite boring.

                                                                                                            1. re: Jay F

                                                                                                              I live in central PA and the fries thing is true of Pittsburgh style here too. Most often with salads. I pass on it though.

                                                                                                              1. re: Jay F

                                                                                                                I am a Pittsburgher and a native and yeah....Primanti's sandwiches are best served for tourists and drunks.

                                                                                                                It is okay sometimes....but I would take (and I know being a native yinzer) a Philly Cheese Steak or better yet, Roast Pork Sandwich or Chicago Italian Beef over a Primanti's every time.

                                                                                                                And yeah, I really don't need fries on my salad. I mean, if I am ordering a salad, fries kind of defeat the purpose. But I do admit dipping them in the ranch dressing is kind of good.

                                                                                                                1. re: Jay F

                                                                                                                  Pittsburgh style meat is cooked less than rare.
                                                                                                                  (First saw the name in WV, and thought they were makin' fun. Turns out they use the term around here too)

                                                                                                                2. I'm not a NJ native, so I may be shouted down for this, but I find Disco fries - French fries with melted cheese & brown gravy totally revolting. Why anyone would take the crispiness of a good French fry and drown it in gravy is beyond this Bronx girl's understanding.

                                                                                                                  There may be an argument to be made for the somewhat-related Canadian delicacy that is Poutine; I can't speak to that, but I can imagine (or hope) that cheese curds make it a different experience than Disco Fries.

                                                                                                                  72 Replies
                                                                                                                  1. re: mcsheridan

                                                                                                                    Fries with gravy have long been beloved in Baltimore. Take that as you wish.

                                                                                                                    1. re: Bob W

                                                                                                                      I need to disagree with you. I grew up in Baltimore and it's still home and never once heard or saw fries with gravy. Not in the newspaper or magazine articles on local food, not in local restaurants, nor was it talked about.

                                                                                                                      It may be a speciality of certain restaurants, areas or demographics of Baltimore but one can't call it a city or region tradition.

                                                                                                                      A Baltimore "regional" food that I find disgusting is Berger's cookies. People know of it, but few buy and eat it and for good reasons.

                                                                                                                      1. re: Roland Parker

                                                                                                                        I agree with you re. fries and gravy. I'm Baltimore born and raised, to two Baltimore born and raised parents, and entire extended family was born, raised and still lives in Baltimore, I go back and visit about once every 6 weeks ... and I have never seen fries & gravy on a menu, read about it, heard it talked about, etc. First time I encountered it was in college when I visited a friend in New Jersey.

                                                                                                                        I can't "like" your post however, because you said Berger cookies were "disgusting." They are not everyone's cup o' tea, I understand (though I love 'em!) ... but seeing them called "disgusting" just hurts my heart!!

                                                                                                                        1. re: charmedgirl

                                                                                                                          I will retract the word. Disgusting is the wrong word, borrowing from the title of this thread. Bergers has its followers, I just find the cookies mediocre, but I still accept them as a Baltimore food.

                                                                                                                        2. re: Roland Parker

                                                                                                                          I'd not heard of Berger's cookies before reading this thread. They sound pretty good on the wiki page, chocolate-covered shortbread. What don't you like about them, RP-er? Too much chocolate? Not a good enough chocolate?

                                                                                                                            1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                              I might not like them. I have friends who say they love chocolate, but when you ask them what specific things they *really* like, it's often the ones with the most sugar. My best friend is like this. I tell him he likes chocolate-flavored sugar.

                                                                                                                              1. re: Jay F

                                                                                                                                "chocolate-flavored sugar"

                                                                                                                                there's a market for that. except Nestle Quik already has a huge marketing arm.

                                                                                                                              2. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                Yes indeedy! And the chocolate fudge topping tastes like slightly stale canned chocolate frosting. Mmmmm, the taste of my completely non-chowish youth!! ;-)

                                                                                                                              3. re: Jay F

                                                                                                                                The concept is wonderful, but it's mediocre fudgy chocolate on a stale cookie. I don't mind the mediocre part, but the quantity of chocolate is way too much for the cookie and it's also very sweet.

                                                                                                                                It's been around Baltimore as long as I can remember and does have its following. I had a friend whose father would buy a box of Berger's but only had them dipped in cold milk, which helped temper some of the sweetness.

                                                                                                                              4. re: Roland Parker

                                                                                                                                Well, your experience clearly defines an entire city. Not only didn't I use the word "tradition" in my post, I also was not aware that something had to be available in a given percentage of restaurants to quality.

                                                                                                                                How many restaurants in Baltimore serve crab fluff these days? I'm sure you can give us a good list of Roland Park eateries that offer lake trout, too. 8<D

                                                                                                                                Snail salad is not available in most restaurants in RI (and I actually kinda like it), but it is a RI food.

                                                                                                                                1. re: Bob W

                                                                                                                                  I have heard of lake trout even if I've never sampled them. And of course we all know about crab cakes and steamed crabs. And Berger's cookies. And the Baltimore Flower Mart had a long standing tradition of lemons with peppermint. These things can legitimately be called "Baltimore" traditions. They're written about in papers and magazines and mentioned with enough frequency not only on chowhound but elsewhere.

                                                                                                                                  But I can genuinely tell you that I have never heard of fries with gravy until you posted about it. I grew up in a household that cared about food and Maryland traditions and my mother is from a family with roots in Baltimore dating to well before the Civil War. I don't doubt that in some areas of the Baltimore region fries with gravy may have been popular, but it's certainly not something talked about city-wide.

                                                                                                                                  It's not so much a question of availability but a question of recognition. Berger's cookies are not that commonly seen and not necessarily eaten by that many people, but it's known enough that it can be called a Baltimore food item. That's the difference. Fries with gravy? Not necessarily so.

                                                                                                                                  1. re: Roland Parker

                                                                                                                                    You really think lake trout is talked about in Roland Park?

                                                                                                                                    We can certainly agree to disagree on this very, very, very minor point.

                                                                                                                                    1. re: Bob W

                                                                                                                                      Lake trout is known in Baltimore. Why? Because if you spend any amount of time driving through the city you're bound to stumble onto signs for lake trout. And it's been mentioned in newspaper articles. On the internet. And on chowhound. And in casual conversations I've had with other Baltimoreans about Baltimore regional food. In short, it's mentioned and it's known as a Baltimore tradition, even if it's primarily eaten by working class black Baltimoreans.

                                                                                                                                      But I draw the line at fries with gravy because it's a food item I've never heard people talk about or mention or write about or discuss as a Baltimore tradition, whether on chowhound or in the Sun or the Baltimore Magazine or at dinner tables. And according to CharmedGirl above, I'm not the only one.

                                                                                                                                    2. re: Roland Parker

                                                                                                                                      I wonder why the guys in the film Diner (1982, set in Baltimore) were eating fries with gravy?

                                                                                                                                      1. re: John E.

                                                                                                                                        LOL I loved that movie and as many times as I've watched it I never noticed the gravy with the fries.

                                                                                                                                        That crazy sports quiz she had to pass to get married was hilarious.

                                                                                                                                        1. re: rasputina

                                                                                                                                          One of the taglines for the film was "Suddenly, life was more than French fries, gravy, and girls."

                                                                                                                                          I think I have found an excuse to watch the movie again, it's been too many years.

                                                                                                                                          1. re: John E.

                                                                                                                                            "weeks! Weeks! I've had that ketchup in the car for weeks!"

                                                                                                                                        2. re: John E.

                                                                                                                                          Might want to add that Diner was set in Baltimore in 1959. A long time ago.

                                                                                                                                          1. re: Bob W

                                                                                                                                            That was going to be part of my point, but I chose not to elaborate. Many regional foods change over time. My hometown is the self-proclaimed Turkey Capital of the World. When the town's celebration started in the 1930s there was a lot of turkey farms in the area. During WWII, 9,000 whole, dressed turkeys on ice were shipped on rail daily. While the town still celebrates its traditions, there aren't many turkey farms in the area anymore.

                                                                                                                                            (We do have the world's largest pork plant where 2,400 hogs are processed every hour, 20 hours a day, 7 days a week.)

                                                                                                                                    3. re: Roland Parker

                                                                                                                                      When I moved from Sandy Eggo to DC in the 90's, I was tickled to find a Boardwalk Fries store at the Pentagon City mall. not Baltimore, but DC is close.

                                                                                                                                      Anyway, I went to order chili cheese fries and what was on the menu instead? Gravy fries. I'd never seen that before.

                                                                                                                                      1. re: DuffyH

                                                                                                                                        Apparently, that's the name down there. I'd Googled "fries gravy Baltimore" and what I got was hit after hit on "Gravy Fries". I don't want those any more than I'd eat Disco Fries.

                                                                                                                                        1. re: mcsheridan

                                                                                                                                          I don't know from Disco Fries, but depending on the chili, Chili Cheese Fries can be an excellent prelude to angioplasty.

                                                                                                                                          1. re: mcsheridan

                                                                                                                                            Since we're still talking Baltimore fries, the best potato product found in Baltimore is "Western Fries," which are thick potato wedges covered in a crunchy batter. They are available elsewhere, but only in Balto do they seem to be called Western Fries. If you've ever had the fries from Chester Fried Chicken, you've had something like Western Fries. I discovered these things my first week in Baltimore for college, at the late lamented Homewood Deli on St. Paul St., and was amazed that they were basically the same thing served at Rummel's Ice Cream in Waterville, ME, under the wonderful name "Fraked Potatoes." (So I'm guessing their version was fried and baked. Or baked and fried.) People my age who went to camp in that area still wax rhapsodically about Fraked Potatoes.

                                                                                                                                            1. re: Bob W

                                                                                                                                              chesterfried chicken! that's a chesterfried heart attack as a friend used to say.

                                                                                                                                              and growing up in ohio, i seem to remember those seasoned battered potato wedges called jo-jo potatoes. anyone else?

                                                                                                                                              1. re: eLizard

                                                                                                                                                I think we need to catalog what these things are called around the country! We're now up to three completely different names, from three states not near each other.

                                                                                                                                                1. re: Bob W

                                                                                                                                                  well, i'm in mass, and there was a chesterfried chicken here.

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: eLizard

                                                                                                                                                    In the St Louis region Chester Fried is a common gas station franchise. One near Six Flags even offers fried frog legs.

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: ennuisans

                                                                                                                                                      the one i recall was in a liquor store near a college campus.

                                                                                                                                                2. re: Bob W

                                                                                                                                                  I love Royal Farms fried chicken and western fries!

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Bob W

                                                                                                                                                    So interesting, keep 'em coming, Bob! What has become apparent to me is that you and I have had very different experiences of traditional Baltimore food. [And, for the record, I grew up no where approaching Roland Park, lest the jokes about that start up again. ;-) ]

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: charmedgirl

                                                                                                                                                      Hi charmedgirl, I think you also recognize that Baltimore is an extremely provincial town, and that people from different areas have very different experiences. (That's the case in most cities but it seems to be extreme in Baltimore.) Once you get past crab cakes, most Baltimorean foods are just not available everywhere in town. If you can buy a smearcase anywhere other than a few old-time bakeries in NE Baltimore, I'd love to know about that!

                                                                                                                                                      But Western Fries should not be hard to find. if you've never had Western Fries, I am really curious what parts of Baltimore you've lived in!

                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Bob W

                                                                                                                                                        I dunno if I would call it "provincial", but I would certainly agree, if only based on this discussion, that it is clear different people can have very different experiences!

                                                                                                                                                        I don't know where else to get smearcase other than those old school bakeries, but in my experience, the same places that sell smearcase also sell peach cake and marshmallow donuts -- all three of which are some of my long time favorites.

                                                                                                                                                        And while I have certainly had "thick French fries with a crunchy batter" before, I have never, ever heard them called "Western Fries."

                                                                                                                                                        I've lived in Lauraville, Parkville/Carney, outside Little Italy, and my final location was Harbor East right before it starting booming. ETA, I also spent in inordinate amount of time growing up with my grand and great grandparents in Frankford.

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: charmedgirl

                                                                                                                                                          <And while I have certainly had "thick French fries with a crunchy batter" before, I have never, ever heard them called "Western Fries."
                                                                                                                                                          >

                                                                                                                                                          When I lived in Rhode Island in 1973, the Newport Creamery was a favorite daytime haunt. They had a "California Burger". It came with lettuce and tomato. In California (and I suspect most other places), that was a hamburger. I thought it was hysterical that produce made it "Californinian".

                                                                                                                                                          1. re: DuffyH

                                                                                                                                                            California hamburgers, meaning with lettuce and tomato, were on menus in NJ in the early 50's.

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: grampart

                                                                                                                                                              Hey grampart,

                                                                                                                                                              I was just completely surprised. There I was, this 19-year-old beach chick, seeing my first California burger. I know I was a bit tickled by it. On the menu it didn't list the ingredients, just the name. So I asked. And got a giggle for myself and a laugh from the counter guy. It's a good memory of my time there.

                                                                                                                                                              BTW - best patty melt I ever had.

                                                                                                                                                              1. re: grampart

                                                                                                                                                                How is lettuce and tomato specifically Californian? Heck I even think foods with avocado being called Californian is silly.

                                                                                                                                                            2. re: charmedgirl

                                                                                                                                                              Yes and yes to marshmallow donuts (Mrs W is a fan, I am not) and peach cake at the same bakeries. We go to the Fenwick Bakery on Harford Rd. For people who are wondering, Baltimore peach cake probably looks nothing like you're imagining.

                                                                                                                                                              My elderly in-laws live in Hamilton, and their culinary boundaries are, shall we say, somewhat limited. They had never eaten at a Chinese restaurant when I met them in 1990.

                                                                                                                                                              As for Westerns, that's quite interesting. I got to Baltimore in 1978 and as I said, discovered them within a week of my arrival. So what do you call them? You don't order "Thick French fries with a crunchy batter"!

                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Bob W

                                                                                                                                                                We're Woodlea loyalists in my family. No family cookout is complete without large slabs of peach cake from Woodlea Bakery.

                                                                                                                                                                And you are so right about the "limited culinary boundaries." My parents never had anything approaching ethnic food until I decided when I was 16 that I wanted to make homemade tacos. For me, at that time, it meant ground beef + Old El Paso seasoning, store bought tortilla shells, and ramekins of shredded lettuce, chopped tomato, pre-shredded "Mexican cheese blend" and Daisy sour cream. My how far I have come, ha ha!! My dad was a good sport and actually enjoyed it, to his surprise, I think. Earlier this year he asked me if I could make "that thing I used to make with all the little bowls of stuff."

                                                                                                                                                                To my recollection, I never called them anything in particular. They were French fries, or sometimes steak fries that, when delivered from the restaurant kitchen, happened to have been prepared in that way. It was more like, that's just the way this restaurant did fries. I don't recall them being a special order. I'll also say, I don't recall getting them all that often. (And just in case, to be clear, not all steak fries came with a crunchy batter; often they did not, and were just thick cut fries, but sometimes they did).

                                                                                                                                                                1. re: charmedgirl

                                                                                                                                                                  Yeah, Western Fries are something you order specially, they just don't come out on the plate. If you ever go to a fried chicken place at Lexington Market or someplace like that, they'll have them. Pit beef places might have them too.

                                                                                                                                                                  Great story about the tacos. I remember early on being invited to the now-in-laws' house for "barbecue." Now, I am a barbecue lover so this was very exciting. But what they call barbecue turned out to be what most of us call sloppy joes. 8<(

                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Bob W

                                                                                                                                                                    My mom calls sloppy joes "barbecue" too!! I swear to god that until this moment I thought it was just her. Sounds like that might be another official Baltimore-specific "thing."

                                                                                                                                                                    And I am now on a mission to try true Western fries the next time I go home. Thanks again, Bob.

                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: charmedgirl

                                                                                                                                                                      Sloppy Joes are called barbeque in southwestern Ohio, imagine my disappointment when this CT girl expected barbeque and received Manwich

                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: cleobeach

                                                                                                                                                                          When I lived in northwest Indiana, a coworker signed up to bring barbecue to a pot luck. I was so disappointed to see her bring in a crockpot of sloppy joes. Now, don't get me wrong, I love sloppy joes, but that's not barbecue!

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: kitchengardengal

                                                                                                                                                                            My mom used to call sloppy joes barbeque, too.

                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: charmedgirl

                                                                                                                                                                    "ground beef + Old El Paso seasoning, store bought tortilla shells, and ramekins of shredded lettuce, chopped tomato, pre-shredded "Mexican cheese blend" and Daisy sour cream."
                                                                                                                                                                    Same here- only without sour cream, and the cheese was cheddar all the way. And I grew up in Tucson! however my parents were from small midwestern towns.
                                                                                                                                                                    Do you remember how those precooked taco shells tasted ever-so-slightly like candle wax?
                                                                                                                                                                    We also used Old El Paso taco sauce from the little bitty cans. That was probably the most authentic part of the meal. When I started going to Mexico as an adult, I was surprised- surprised! that the first tacos I had there had finely shredded cabbage instead of lettuce, finely diced mesquite-grilled beef steak, no cheese usually, and when they did it was a cotija or queso fresco, always white. And usually cucumber was available, and radishes. Now THAT's good eats. But I loved those tacos back then, too.

                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: EWSflash

                                                                                                                                                                      Radishes on a taco were -such- a revelation.

                                                                                                                                                              2. re: Bob W

                                                                                                                                                                mars sell smearkase. simons bakery in cockeysville sells smearkase along with another, almost lost baltimore tradition, fresh peach cake. scratch-baked, the old-fashioned way.

                                                                                                                                                      2. re: Roland Parker

                                                                                                                                                        College Park MD, University of Maryland, Student Center, Cafeteria, circa late 1960's: Fries with Gravy. All over the place. Never saw this in Baltimore, but in CP it definitely was a reality.

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Querencia

                                                                                                                                                          Hail, fellow Terp! I agree, I did see this at UMCP, but by the time I got there, it might as well have been the University of New Jersey, and I figured they were playing to their audience. (As mentioned above, I had not encountered this until I visited a college friend at her hometown in NJ, where I understood from her that it was standard on all diner menus.) Sounds like it was around much earlier than that in CP and Baltimore both, albeit in different Baltimore neighborhoods than I was frequenting.

                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Querencia

                                                                                                                                                            The popularity among Terps is likely why I saw it on the menu at Boardwalk Fries In Pentagon City.

                                                                                                                                                          2. re: Roland Parker

                                                                                                                                                            bawlmer born and raised... and have always found fries with gravy ("you want gravy on your fries?") in diners, sub shops, comfort food restaurants in baltimore. and featured in none other than barry levinson's ode to baltimore, diner.

                                                                                                                                                        2. re: mcsheridan

                                                                                                                                                          I hate to disillusion you, but fries and gravy is standard Canadian fare, outside of poutine itself. At KFC, when you order a mega meal, the bucket of gravy is for the fries (no biscuits or mashed potatoes are involved).

                                                                                                                                                          1. re: mcsheridan

                                                                                                                                                            Not a fan of disco fries for that same reason. However, I will order cheese fruits with a side of gravy to dip into.

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: mcsheridan

                                                                                                                                                              Yeah, we have "poutine" made with grated cheese here as well, and curds are better.... if done right, which isn't always the case. The best poutine IMO will have a mix of still-crispy or half-crispy fries around the edges and fresh curds that are starting to melt from the heat of the fries and gravy. But sometimes to accomplish the melting via steam in your package, you're going to sacrifice fry crispiness, for sure. Granted that it is a totally different experience than perfect crispy frites dipped in mayo, but both things are good :) We also like fries with vinegar, and as mentionned below fries and gravy, and those just aren't going to be very crispy, so maybe it's a Canadian thing.

                                                                                                                                                              1. re: mcsheridan

                                                                                                                                                                There's a restaurant in RI called Stanley's that serves what they call Quebec Fries, which sound exactly like the Disco Fries you described. I tried them once; not as good as poutine.

                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Bob W

                                                                                                                                                                  Bob,
                                                                                                                                                                  just from reading your posts in this thread it seems like we
                                                                                                                                                                  are probably part of a rather small clique that has had the opportunity to eat at both Stanley's and the Homewood Deli. I'd venture to guess we may also share trips to the Weinie Genie on the CF/Lincoln line and Pete's Grill on Greenmount in Baltimore.

                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: sbs401

                                                                                                                                                                    LOL that is funny. Never made it to the Weinie Genie -- I lived on the Prov side of Pawtucket so my regular weiner joints were Charlie's on Hope St at the end of Blackstone Blvd and the City Line Diner on Pawt Ave/N. Main St. And then the NY System on Smith St near the State House.

                                                                                                                                                                    Pete's was probably after my time in Charles Village (78-82). I was there for the opening of the original Uncle Lee's on Greenmount, the first szechuan place in Baltimore.

                                                                                                                                                                2. re: mcsheridan

                                                                                                                                                                  I've not heard of disco fries before. Are they a uniquely New Jersey menu item?

                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Jay F

                                                                                                                                                                    The name is unique to NJ with occasional mentions in NY, but the dish is just one data point along the spectrum of cheese-covered fries, gravy-drenched fries, and in this case, both.

                                                                                                                                                                    The disco description harks back to late-night clubbers in the 70s, showing up hungry at diners in NJ. Who first coined the term is unknown.

                                                                                                                                                                    It's Steak fries usually, melted mozzarella or cheddar cheese over them, and covered in brown gravy (occasional variation: chicken gravy). Sometimes even more melted cheese *over* the gravy. All in all, a terrible thing to do to an innocent, crispy fry.

                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: mcsheridan

                                                                                                                                                                      Thanks, MC. I grew up in NJ, but moved across the river mid-disco era.

                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: mcsheridan

                                                                                                                                                                        disco fries at sip and bite diner in baltimore

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: mcsheridan

                                                                                                                                                                            And the Sip & Bite is open 24 hours! It's in Canton, a now-trendy area full of bars. From the "Diner Food" section of their menu:

                                                                                                                                                                            Diner Fries choose from: Disco fries topped with melted cheddar cheese & gravy, or Pizza fries topped w/ melted provolone cheese & marinara sauce, or Feta fries sprinkled with greek oregano, or Honey Feta Fries a sweet twist to our Feta Fries

                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Bob W

                                                                                                                                                                              All horrible, horrible things to do to the innocent potato. 24/7 yet!

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: mcsheridan

                                                                                                                                                                                But good for absorbing excessive quantities of alcohol!

                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Bob W

                                                                                                                                                                                  I certainly can't argue with that.

                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: mcsheridan

                                                                                                                                                                      New Orleans has the French fry po-boy and one version adds roast beef gravy or gravy with "debris", bits and pieces of roast beef that come adrift during the cooking and shredding.

                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: collardman

                                                                                                                                                                        The history of the New Orleans Po-Boy is a rich one, dating back nearly 100 years. During the Great Depression there
                                                                                                                                                                        was a street car strike. Some former street car workers opened a sandwich shop used cut potatoes and roast beef gravy to make this signature dish, and that was the first poor boy sandwich. Today, french fry and gravy po-boys are still found on many menus."

                                                                                                                                                                        http://www.neworleansonline.com/newor..."

                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: mcsheridan

                                                                                                                                                                        i grew up in NJ and i absolutely love disco fries...even when not consumed at 3 am in a diner.
                                                                                                                                                                        but it's all about maintaining salt ratios, too much salt on any item does kill the wonderful messy fries!

                                                                                                                                                                        1. NY style pizza. I don't get the appeal of floppy pizza that needs to be folded over to eat.
                                                                                                                                                                          Memphis style ribs, rub but no sauce?? What?
                                                                                                                                                                          Tuna Noodle casserole, disgusting on every level
                                                                                                                                                                          Tex Mex burritos slathered with chili

                                                                                                                                                                          overly sweet, sweet tea. I grew up on sweet tea but my mom made it way too sweet and I actually made it unsweetened for years. Now I enjoy sweet tea again, but only if it's not too sweet.

                                                                                                                                                                          26 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: rasputina

                                                                                                                                                                            Funny... I totally disagree with you on NYC pizza. I loooove a slice I can fold in half and walk with, grease dripping down my arm....

                                                                                                                                                                            But I agree 100% on Tex Mex. It's a weird hybrid! I thought burritos were *supposed* to be hand-food?

                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: rasputina

                                                                                                                                                                              You area is famous for all those things?

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                                                                People move these days.

                                                                                                                                                                                I grew up in SoCal, went to school in TX, currently live in the Midwest USA.

                                                                                                                                                                                I've eaten extensively in all three locales.

                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: pedalfaster

                                                                                                                                                                                  Burritos are not Tex-Mex, more of a California thing, in fact much of what passes as Tex-Mex outside of Texas and maybe Oklahoma is not Tex-Mex, been eating the real thing since the mid 60's.

                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                                                                      I'm with ya C, (I'm getting OT, but) as an acceptable fork and knife variation, once in PHX we went to some hole in the wall Sonoran place whose special that day was a 'burro' slathered in green gravy.

                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: hill food

                                                                                                                                                                                        Yeah, I've seen those "wet" burritos on menus. Not for me.

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                                                                          Wet burritos covered in red sauce can be pretty tasty.

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: DuffyH

                                                                                                                                                                                            I'll trust you on that one but I'm betting you can't walk around eating one of those out of your hand :)

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                                                                                why not? the good lord did invent wet-naps.

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: hill food

                                                                                                                                                                                                  True, my friend, but I'll take a Mission burrito every time.

                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: DuffyH

                                                                                                                                                                                                Not a huge burrito fan in general, but I agree. Especially if they've been deep fried and are therefore chimichangas, enchilada style. I've never ordered one but have had bites of others' chimis, and have to say they can be pretty good.

                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: James Cristinian

                                                                                                                                                                                          I never heard of Tex Mex until after I left California in the 90's. We used to just eat Mexican food, nothing Tex about it.

                                                                                                                                                                                          When I moved back in 2000, it was still just Mexican.

                                                                                                                                                                                          Fish tacos don't do it for me.

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: DuffyH

                                                                                                                                                                                            I agree about the fish tacos. I should put that into the "so over" thread. They're edible if the fish is of good quality, but why do you really want fish in a taco?

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: sandylc

                                                                                                                                                                                              Especially battered fish? I just don't get it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                                                                                  I know the history, I just don't get the concept of battered fish in a tortilla.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: DuffyH

                                                                                                                                                                                                    I've never met a taco I didn't like so I'm a bad judge :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: sandylc

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Grilled mahi mahi tacos are one of God's great gifts to us

                                                                                                                                                                                                3. re: DuffyH

                                                                                                                                                                                                  I think that phrase didn't come into common use until about then - maybe food folks used it but not the average-ish guy.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: lemons

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Boy, Google is my friend today :) The term came into use in the '40s

                                                                                                                                                                                                    http://www.foodtimeline.org/foodmexic...

                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: rasputina

                                                                                                                                                                                            Is "Tuna Noodle casserole" a "famous regional food"? Maybe so if the "region" is the continental United States? I don't like it, but I "love" it... having been born & raised outside of the USA, for me it's one of the few common American dishes I consider a "comfort food."

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: drongo

                                                                                                                                                                                              Never had it growing up in CT or in MD and not likely to try because our dark Italian tuna packed in oil does not sound appealing hot.

                                                                                                                                                                                          3. In Illinois it was tuna noodle casserole using Campbells cream of mushroom soup. Everyone's mother served it and was soooo proud. Horrid stuff, not fit for man nor beast.

                                                                                                                                                                                            16 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: genoO

                                                                                                                                                                                                Never had tuna casserole but in reference to St Louis I almost mentioned mostaccioli, which I am told is plentiful in Illinois. It can be good unless it's catered, which it always seems to be.

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: ennuisans

                                                                                                                                                                                                  I make baked cavatappi with besciamella, Parmigiano-Reggiano, and Bolognese when I don't feel like rolling pasta (which is nearly always as I get older). It isn't embarrassing or disgusting, but the mostaccioli made me think of it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Jay F

                                                                                                                                                                                                    I came across that post of yours today and had forgotten that I intended to do that. Heading to the BayArea in a couple of weeks to see new granddaughter. I think that would be a perfect dinner. Sooo much easier when not at home also.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: ennuisans

                                                                                                                                                                                                    hey I like mostaccioli (which for some reason seems to be pronounced 'muskacholli' - never could figure that one out) I was SO disappointed last summer, went to 2 weddings and... none at either. well I suppose under local law it'll be easier to get an annulment this way if things don't work out.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: hill food

                                                                                                                                                                                                      One or two of the frozen meal companies, On-Cor or somebody, has family size muskacholli but apparently it's a regional thing. I went looking for some recently for a taste of back home and it was nowhere to be found. I do like it freshly made but the catered stuff seems to dry out very easily, at least the times I've had it. Dry noodles, man.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: eLizard

                                                                                                                                                                                                          I had to look up ziti. Like that but without the lasagna-like firmness. Basically it's baked spaghetti with meat sauce, but substitute mostaccioli noodles, which are much easier to spoon out of a serving pan at weddings and such.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: ennuisans

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Baked ziti isn't lasagne firm where I come from unless it has been sitting all day in a deli cooler.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: ennuisans

                                                                                                                                                                                                      What is mostaccioli? I know it as a noodle - is it some sort of dish as well?

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: NonnieMuss

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Usually made these days with penne pasta - baked with red sauce, usually w/ (a little) meat in it and topped with cheese, served in aluminum pans and chafing dishes. Marriages in the city of St. Louis considered illegal if it isn't served at the reception. Consumption of this product produces the urge to do the duck dance soon thereafter.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Pasta usually overcooked, of course. Nothing truly offensive, just pretty boring.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: lemons

                                                                                                                                                                                                          yep penne or ziti as we're not fancy. some relatives refer to all pasta as spaghetti, so to them it's just 'big spaghetti of the tubular variety'. the sauce is usually nothing more exciting than can be found in a jar.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          it's kinda like when you're a kid and the best part of Xmas is all the empty box/spaceship flotilla/fortified compound.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    3. re: genoO

                                                                                                                                                                                                      I happen to be making a batch right now

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: genoO

                                                                                                                                                                                                        I like it- with peas and the noodles aren't overcooked, it's one of my favorite old-time comfort food meals

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: genoO

                                                                                                                                                                                                          I grew up in the 70's and 80's and I thank god my family was not a Tuna Casserole/Hamburger Helper type of family.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Never. Ever.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Owtahear

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Hamburger Helper would have been a step up from my mothers cooking!

                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. Not embarrassing or disgusting, but puzzling.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          I currently live in Indiana and I just don't get Sugar Cream Pie (the "official " state pie).

                                                                                                                                                                                                          I suppose I understand the need to make high-fat, high-calorie food to feed the family during lean times. Perhaps state officials think the pasty color and the jiggly filling are emblematic of the population?

                                                                                                                                                                                                          This pie certainly misses out on the wonderful berries this region produces in spring and summer, the wide variety of apples in fall, the squash and pumpkin used throughout winter.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          We have great produce here! How odd not to highlight that "officially".

                                                                                                                                                                                                          4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: pedalfaster

                                                                                                                                                                                                            "Perhaps state officials think the pasty color and the jiggly filling are emblematic of the population?"
                                                                                                                                                                                                            Now that's funny!

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: genoO

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Hate to be a bore, but a there are Cornish 'Pastys', a 'pastey' color of white, and then there's a type of garment....

                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: pedalfaster

                                                                                                                                                                                                              I understand. I grew up in Indiana, but didn't have my first sugar cream pie until after I left, strangely. I figured out how to make it in order to taste it. The trick is to parbake the crust so that it's brown and crisp. Then the pie stands a chance of being good. It's far too sweet, however. I've wondered how it would be with some nice tart berries on top.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: sandylc

                                                                                                                                                                                                                I lived in Indiana for 27 years, moved to Georgia in 2003, but never heard of Indiana's sugar pie until just a few years ago.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                Like sandylc, I'll have to make it to try it. I've never seen it at any restaurants we stop at when we go back to visit.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            3. German hometown:

                                                                                                                                                                                                              - Berliner Weisse. If you need to put technicolored syrup in your beer, you're drinking shitty beer. Knock it off.
                                                                                                                                                                                                              - Currywurst. Really nothing more than decent drunk food.
                                                                                                                                                                                                              - Pfannkuchen/Berliner (jam-filled donuts). Just meh.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              US:
                                                                                                                                                                                                              - Sticky buns. Too much dough, too much sugar, too much of everything.
                                                                                                                                                                                                              - Cheesesteaks. Meh.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              63 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                I agree with your German items, based on your explanations, on principle alone. I agree that a sticky bun, even one small one (and they almost never are) is just *too* much - of everything.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                But I do like an occasional cheesesteak - at least if I make it myself. :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: mcsheridan

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Probly shoulda had that cheesesteak drunk. I bet it's great drunk food.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    If you want good drunk food, you have to go back to my hometown, The Bronx in NYC, and visit a White Castle in the wee hours. Get a sack full of their ridiculous "burgers". They invented the slider, "where the holes are punched in, not out".
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    http://www.whitecastle.com/food/menu

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Only two types of people can stomach them: drunks, and those like me who grew up in walking distance of them.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    For the record, I call them burgers because WC did likewise when I was growing up. They only started using the word "slider" when it became trendy.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: mcsheridan

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I grew up on Krystals which are pretty identical. I have converted Bob to WCBs which we can get frozen, six to a box, at the grocery. Makes a perfect lunch :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: mcsheridan

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        We called them sliders before it became trendy - because they slide in, and slide right out again.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: NonnieMuss

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          We called them "belly bombers" for the effect eating 4-6 of them could wreak on one's system.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: NonnieMuss

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Dad used to grill "sliders" and "rollers", burgers and dogs. The burgers were standard size.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I think slider has long been slang for burger.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: DuffyH

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                In St Louis, sliders have only meant one thing for the last 60 years - at least until the last couple, I mean, when it came to mean any sandwich the chef cared to put on a bun. Last week, the phrase was used to describe an Asian-style steamed open bun w/ bacon and egg.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: mcsheridan

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              no they were belly bombs !but I did eat 20 of them once!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: PHREDDY

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Belly bombs, belly bombers - different phrases for different Neighborhoods. Yet the effect was nearly identical, block to block. :D

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                20? Wow. Talk about "going nuclear".

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: mcsheridan

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I've been known to lovingly call them "rat burgers" :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: mcsheridan

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Had 20 when I was 18 years old!..had a cast iron stomach then!
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Born in in the Bronx, grew up in Queens...that is why we probably speak different languages.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: mcsheridan

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Ooooo....yeah. Three a.m. in the hot summer of 1975 while grad students at St. John's. Diane and I would walk from 170th and Union Turnpike down to 164th St (or was it 158th St??) for a sack of pseudobeef sliders and shakes with a dessert doob on the hike home. Memories.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  CP

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Chefpaulo

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    As you know the location became a pharmacy! (that is where I ate my 20 )

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: mcsheridan

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I've heard a lot about the mighty WC slider. Enough to think that it would not agree with me, no matter how drunk I am. Sad but true.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Oh, just have one. When I was in high school, they'd have specials of 10 for $1. To appear dainty, I'd have four to my BFs six :) I like yellow mustard on them.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        lingua, it is called a "belly bomber" for a reason.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        and I have to agree about the Berliner Weisse, I tried it but never 'got' it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: mcsheridan

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        anyone remember their slogan (one of many) for many years?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        "Hamburgers for Breakfast? Why Not?"
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        indeed.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: hill food

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Never heard that one...might have been after my time. The one I knew was "Buy 'em by the sack". They were a dime each back then.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: mcsheridan

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I remember when WC employees took offense at the term "slider".

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: mcsheridan

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            little tavern, back when, served the same purpose in baltimore

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Vidute

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Loved Little Tavern after a night of drinking in Salisbury and OC.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      3. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        As a lifelong Philly resident, I enjoy the occasional *good* cheesesteak. The problem is tourists are sent to the bad spots. And as I am of a certain age, "whiz" was never an option.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The real tragedy is that Philly has a great food scene, but the national media always reduces it to cheesesteaks with wiz.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        If we're going to expand to Central PA/Lancaster? Agreed on sticky buns. And what masochist invented shoo-fly pie? My teeth hurt just thinking about it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        ETA: Relatives actually do beg for sticky buns with . . . ugh . . . cream cheese frosting. I wonder if they see me shudder as I purchase them.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: gaffk

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I feel your pain. I live in Houston and with the media always BBQ and then off to get cowboy boots and hats, which nobody here wears except for the 2 1/2 week rodeo in late winter. We have a great international food scene, by the way.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: James Cristinian

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I have not lived in Houston for years but your comment is so true - cowboy hats only seen during rodeo - amazing variety of food.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            and now in Philly... "whiz" ugh

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            both cities have such great food and generally terrible PR

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: gaffk

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Central PA gal chiming in! My short list of famous regional "treats" I find disgusting -

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            shoo-fly pie
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            scrapple
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            whoopee pies (not all, just the ones with the gritty filling)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I never warmed to Yuengling Lager (but do like some of their other beers), which was by far the most requested item from my friends when I visited. Back in the day, it was hard to find outside of Central PA.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: cleobeach

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Did you know that whoopie pies are also huge in Maine? We just got back and they are everywhere. The ones produced by the Two Fat Cats Bakery in Portland are widely considered to be the best in the state.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              When I moved down to the Mid-Atlantic many years ago, I tried so very hard to like scrapple. But I cannot. While I won't go so far as to call it disgusting, I have no use for it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: cleobeach

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                It took me almost a decade to warm up to Yuengling. If the draft beer is free for my band at shows, and the other choices are several 'varieties' of bud or miller, I will take a Yuengling any time over that piss.... but I used to find it on the skanky side.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Premium on draft was the standard beer in every bar where I grew up so I sort of grew up (in my late teens on up) on that and will still drink it today if it is offered.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  We keep Chesterfield at our cabin and I enjoy one of those on occasion as well.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Lager always gave me a headache. It is still widely regarded as the "good beer" to have on draft at weddings. No thank you!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: cleobeach

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    It's not my first choice, either. But when it's free, it's hard to argue -- especially if the alternatives are so abysmal.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: cleobeach

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I think we could start a thread just on regional beers. When they resumed selling Yuengling in MA not too long ago people got excited. Bars and liquor store were advertising that they had it and friends were excited.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: viperlush

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Microbreweries are popping up everywhere in PA and I don't get the appeal, some are just bad.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: cleobeach

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Yuengling is ok for a session beer, I will take it over Bud/Miller/Coors anyday but I think a lot of the new PA breweries are very good.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: JTPhilly

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Hi JTPhilly,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Here in Tampa, Yuengling is also way more popular than the standard crowd. Doesn't hurt that it's cheap and local.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: cleobeach

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Now scrapple and whoopie pies are regional foods I can get behind. But agreed, the whoopie pie has to have a good firm, creamy filling.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: gaffk

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      The best part of visiting my grandparents in Philly were the giant cheese steaks we would get from some place in a not touristy location. Wiz was never an option. My mom who is Philly born and raised can't stand the thought of wiz on a cheesesteak.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: viperlush

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Wiz is gross - I think the only reason it persists is because people its fun to say "wit wiz" but yuk - I have never known anyone to choose wiz. IME the best steaks are to be had in the neighborhoods and not at the tourist joints.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: JTPhilly

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Roast pork with broccoli rabe is far superior to anything with Wiz!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          The first time I got a cheesesteak in Philadelphia (at Pat's, this was pre-internet) I took one bite and thought, really? That's it? I much prefer what we in RI would call a "steak and cheese," which is made with provolone.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Bob W

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I just saw Andrew Zimmern at John's Roast Pork (on his TV program) and Zimmern referred to the sauteéd green stuff on the sandwhich as spinach and not broccoli rabe. Did Zimmern just make a mstake, or has a change been made?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I have relatives in Haverford and will get out there someday and hopefully get to John's. (I know my relatives have never heard of the place, they gave my dad a Darden gift card for his birthday.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: JTPhilly

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            When I get to Philladelphia, I am going to avoid Pat's just because he does not know how to say 'with' and 'without'.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: John E.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Yes, you would do well to avoid both Pat's and Geno's . . . and not because of "wit/witout." When you are planning your trip to Philly, check out the local board--plenty of good cheesesteak info there. My favorites are Joe's (formerly Chink's) and Steve's, but both are well outside the tourist/Center City area.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: melpy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Funny, I had considered adding Jim's as a good option.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: gaffk

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    We like to go to philly once or twice a year for a long weekend.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    We enjoy Jim's. I am sure there are better places in the eyes of the locals but as a tourist, it is a nice combo of neighborhood people watching and a decent sandwich.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: cleobeach

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Yeah, for tourists it's not really worth traveling to a neighborhood for a better cheesesteak. Jim's is a few steps above Pat's and Geno's. And, as you say, it's a good people-watching scene.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: gaffk

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Jim's is ok, its where I had my first "real" steak way back in the way back machine when South Street was punk and I was too young to drink legally and never thought I may live in this jawn one day. Nowdays my favorite steak is across the street from my $6 haircut in Kensington but it seems they are upping the game out here with Joe's (formerly Chink's) opening at Frankford and Girard and some "elevated" steak joint opening right under the El at Front & Girard its time for Fishtown steak wars. Locals here all mourn the loss of Grilladelphia at the former 'rock n roll' Exxon who had the brilliant pocket steak (one you could eat and drive)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: gaffk

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Were Pat's and Geno's always tourist-y?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I ask because nearly 30 years ago, I remember a friend of a friend from South Philly taking us there. He lived in the area and I remember walking to Pat's.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Looking back on it, he didn't strike me as the type that would have taken out of towners to a tourist spot.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: cleobeach

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I don't know when Pat's and Geno's jumped the proverbial shark and became places to avoid. I think people just get tired of the faux rivalry (which is of course mutually beneficial) and know that just as good (or better) a steak can be had for less without all the bull - While never a bad neighborhood gentrification has definitely made the location more accessible for tourists (or torsts) and the Italian Market is nearby and East Passyunk has an amazing dining scene. Its a good stop for a visitor - public park nearby and a busy intersection gives a bit of "authentic" south Philly for a visitor without being really OBT or sketchy.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: cleobeach

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Sorry to say, but Pat's and Geno's have always been touristy. Except late-night when all the neighborhood places are closed and the bars are letting out.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: melpy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Jim's extra meat, wit whiz is my jam. Throw some hot peppers on the side. Yummmmm

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: viperlush

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I think whiz is a generational thing. My nieces and nephews seem to think it's standard. But growing up it was either white American or provolone.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: gaffk

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Most likely. Not being from Philly I only knew what my grandparents and mother offered. I didn't hear about the whiz until college. Probably one of my first "Chowhound" discussions/ arguments was about the authenticity of whiz on cheese steaks.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Jerseygirl111

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    And that's why God created chocolate and vanilla!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: melpy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Me too, I don't even consider it pie.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: melpy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        There's a little Mennonite restaurant in Blackville SC called Miller's Bread Basket that serves the best fried chicken, and their shoofly pie is a sugar bomb of wonderfulness. I get that pie every time we travel through that town.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: kitchengardengal

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Poor shoofly pie - getting so little love on CH, I love em.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      - Currywurst. Really nothing more than decent drunk food.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      - Pfannkuchen/Berliner (jam-filled donuts). Just meh.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      -> What ??? Your german passport just got revoked. We can get or make most of the stuff we miss from Germany but Currywurst and a good Berliner are two things we miss from time to time. (And a good Doner and not the stuff they sell here as Doner)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: honkman

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I'll take a döner or shawarma -- hell, even a falafel sandwich (but only from Habibi) over a currywurst any old day.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Biers in S-Bhf Friedrichstrasse might be the singular exception, given that they make their own sauce which *actually* has some kick to it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        As for Pfannkuchen -- I'm just not a fan. Too many pastry things I'd prefer.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    3. <Visiting relatives beg for it while you gag?>

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Seven layer salad. They also have a zillon recipes involving jello.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. I just can't understand the popularity of scrapple. I think it's a texture thing for me...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        6 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: jujuthomas

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Ah, but you can adjust the texture of scrapple. My parents loved it thin and crispy. I prefer mine thickish and mealy.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: gaffk

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I never eat anything with the word "crap" right in its name.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            CP

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: jujuthomas

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Funny thing about scrapple. It was invented as a way to use up the undesirable parts of the pig and to flavor the bland, cheap cornmeal/buckwheat.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              BUT...when you make it from really good pork, like shoulder, it turns into something pretty edible, even likeable.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: sandylc

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                true, never read the ingredients label on the commercial stuff (doesn't stop me from eating it, just not reading)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. Haggis infused with peanut butter

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: beevod

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                And where, pray tell, does one find that?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. Embarrassing, no, disgusting, yes: Lutefisk, served here in Scandinavian country. (Think fish jello.) Pale, white. Served with boiled white potatoes and white cream gravy.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                10 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Patti Isaacs

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Your visiting relatives beg for lutefisk?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: John E.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Dad and I were in Kirkenes, Norway in 1998 and I tried it. I shared a bite with him. He almost hurled.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Been there. Done that.Sorry, dad.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    CP

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Chefpaulo

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      One of the few things I've not eaten that relatively 'normal.' Now I know I won't.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Chefpaulo

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        That lutefisk you ate in Norway was likely made in Minneapolis. Olsen Fish Company is the largest lutefisk maker in the world. They import the salt cod from Norway and the export it back to Scandinavia.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Lutefisk is a pretty big deal at Christmas time at some Minnesota Lutheran church dinners.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: John E.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Not my relatives. But people travel here around the holidays for church lutefisk dinners. Love the Red Owl logo, BTW!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      3. re: Patti Isaacs

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        My wife is of Norwegian extraction and she eats lutefisk... and sometimes I'm dragged to the Sons of Norway where this is popular. I agree with your assessment, lol. Also unpleasant (but not really so bad) are the fiskeboller.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: drongo

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          How about a nice hunk of gammelost?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: grampart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            OMG. I don't think I've tried that. Actually, I'm sure I haven't because I would remember something like that!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: Patti Isaacs

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Lutefisk is twice as horrid, no make that 4 times more horrid than Tuna Noodle casserole.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Mom use to try that game around Christmas. Not even she or Dad liked it so what was the point beside to torture the children?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: genoO

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            geno - does one need a better reason?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        3. Not relatives, but visiting friends always want Marshmallow Fluff. Why ruin good peanut butter, I say! Jmo...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. First, consider that when people visited us, it was A BIG DEAL.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            My daughters consider Beijing their native home, and so I checked with them about the OP... and their answer is sort of inside out from the question.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Basically, visitors thought they would get Really Good sweet'n'sour chicken or moo goo gai pan or egg rolls or... good American Chinese [mostly Cantonese-origin] food!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            And everyone HAD To HAVE Peking Duck, but more for the show than the taste.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Kris in Beijing

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Love that. And probably fortune cookies :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Kris in Beijing

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Americanized Chinese in China? can it be found and if so, why?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: hill food

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  "gourmet" 3star hotels.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  They know what their clients want.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. Bread Pudding, NYC Style Pizza, Tex Mex, Cincinnati Chili, Sweet Tea, Poutine, Lobster!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                You people are KILLING ME.... send it all my way!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I'll send you some SCRAPPLE in return ;)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I like polenta, I like hotdogs - i don't see a need to fuse them into a grey/pink block of meat like stuff.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                12 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: wadejay26

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    and that's what makes the world go round!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: JTPhilly

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    NYC pizza "embarrassing" or "disgusting"? That can't be.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Jay F

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I think you misread JTPhilly's post, edit maybe I misread yours.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Jay F

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Seems the first poster was speaking of NYC "style" pizza, as in, it's being made elsewhere than NYC. Now it makes more sense.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: coll

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          There's a place where I live that sells NYC *style* pizza. The slices are big and a little sloppy, but I can't get past how much garlic powder they use.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Jay F

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Not a good thing! Even the oregano has to be judicious to make it just right. It's good to stick to whatever a region has to offer I think, but what do I know. I can get NYC pizza every day of the week ;-) and I've often said, if I could only have one thing to eat the rest of my life, it would be pizza. But I didn't consider the nuances.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            We are flying through Denver soon, and I saw that Wolfgang Puck has a restaurant at the airport. I almost succumbed to grabbing a "gourmet" pie for lunch and then said to myself, what? Better to stick with various Mexican places.....any recommendations appreciated though. I have 3.5 hours to kill.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: coll

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            If you're referring to my post, that mentioned NY style, I should have just left off the word style. NY pizza in general is what I meant.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: rasputina

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              You find NY pizza "embarrassing" and "disgusting"? I almost always agree with you on chow concepts, Rasputina, but NY pizza is one of my "foods of the gods."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Is it more embarrassing or disgusting?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Jay F

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I don't really find food embarrassing. I don't really understand that concept. If someone likes a certain food, that's fine with me. I just don't like pizza with floppy crust and too much greasy cheese and toppings. If I'm starving I'd eat it but it wouldn't satisfy a craving for pizza. It would just leave me disappointed.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Jay F

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  To be fair, a lot of NY pizza is pretty sad. Sure there's good pizza out there, but visitors to the city think they can walk into any slice joint and get something praiseworthy. Most of the time it's something that tastes pretty much like the paper plate it's served on, just with more cheese. And with dollar pizza joints proliferating across the city, it's not like quality is going to go on the upswing anytime soon.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: JungMann

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I guess it's a thing that will have to exist in memory, then. I haven't lived in NY since the late '70s, and don't really eat much pizza while visiting. But I grew up in NJ and pizza was my favorite food until I left NY. I was particularly fond of Ray's at the corner of Sixth Avenue and 11th Street.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. Not embarrassing or disgusting but Michigan, especially southeast/metro Detroit is known for coney dogs and