This is something that has been bothering me for quite some time now, trying to figure out if we have something unique of our own, aside of the hot dogs and the cheese burgers. What is our cuisine? Do we have one? Or is it just a combination of Mexican, Indian, Chinese, Japanese, Greek, Italian, Israeli and Turkish food?
Answer #2 looks to be closer to the truth. The truth is, we really don’t have something of our own: something that we have invented ourselves. In fact everything we have, is usually a combination of the other recipes that already exist. Honestly, if you don’t count hot dogs, cheese burgers and mashed potato I don’t think we have anything going for us. America has always been as a nation, a combination of things: a combination of cultures, a combination of food habits, a combination or religions, a combination of politics, a combination of opinions (and the list goes on and on) but never has it been one specific identity. So part of that, is not having our own cuisine or something we enjoy cooking more over something else. There really is no true American. We all have so many backgrounds and even if you consider that some Americans are natives, it gets even more complex. So it is kind of tough to have one cuisine across the board as a general rule; the same way there are so many religions and even opinions. When someone comes from some Asian country as an immigrant, it is hard for that person to get used to “western food.” Same thing goes for people that come from middle eastern parts of the world. The good thing about this story, is the great variety in food options. If someone is wanting to pay attention to their diet and make sure they are eating healthy, there are so many different options of healthy foods and recipes.
For example, we all know that “hispanic food” is more or less unhealthy compared to let’s say Greek food. Simple reason being that Greek’s cuisine is focused greatly on vegetables while Mexican or Peruvian food may have beans but it also has lots of pork fat and things like that in it (I didn’t just read it off the Internet, I have tried those foods.) So what I’m trying to say is, that if someone wants to go for the food they enjoy more but isn’t as healthy, they got that right at their doorstep. Similarly, if someone is looking to live a little bit longer (kidding of course) they have right at the tips of their finger tips the opportunity to eat healthy and make sure they offer healthy meals to their family members too!
I think diversity is such a great thing: you got space to experiment and try things. Imagine everyone being stuck with beans or specific types of meat for the rest of their lives…ouch! Now, the problem with such a diverse cuisine in the US is the complexity in food preparation for guests. Let’s say you invite a Jewish couple over for dinner: you need to know that they don’t eat pork (at least in theory – ’cause I’ve seen some eat but that’s a different story) so you wouldn’t want to serve them that. Or for instance if someone is a vegetarian (which doesn’t really have to do with ethnic food culture but anyway) you need to know to not serve meat. Honestly, I don’t know how the vegans and these groups of people enjoy their meals, but that is I guess personal preference. The point is: you always need to be informed and well rounded culturally to understand that things around you aren’t exactly in the way you are anticipating them to be. You need to be flexible. And that is the great thing about America!
Send in your comments and hateful comments (I’m kidding of course.) I would love to learn of new recipes so please do send any information like that. And of course, as always, stay tuned for more interesting articles.
Below I am sharing with you an interesting Youtube video about the breakfast people eat around the world. Enjoy!