|American as apple pie... sort of - Photo by Wasabi Prime|
It seems like a simple enough question, right? One immediately thinks of drive-thru cheeseburgers, milkshakes, and other industrialized forms of cuisine that is less about food and more inherent of industrial revolution and our Manifest Destiny of I Want it NOW. But I don't think it's fair to characterize our nation's home cooking by conveyor belt quickness and Conehead-like mass quantities. I should think the food we eat in this country is a byproduct of the drive of necessity, ingenuity, and the notion that there's still room for good flavor amongst those moving parts.
|Unidentified Foodie Objects - Photo by Wasabi Prime|
Inspired by our crucible of cultures, I threw together a hodgepodge of ingredients to make roasted pattypan squash stuffed with chorizo. This sounds fussy and obscure, but it's surprisingly basic. From our backyard garden, we had tender baby scallions and a couple of carrots (including one scary claw-shaped one - RAWR), a spare onion in the pantry, and several snowy-white pattypan squash from fellow bloggers, Mr. and Mrs. Picket Fence. The name of the mothership-like squash is French in origin, referring to a pâtisson, a cake pan having a similar shape. For the filling, I used a soft Mexican pork chorizo, but the spice-laden sausage has origins throughout both Spain and Portugal.
It's hard to associate this meal with any single ethnic cuisine, and so I think it's simpler to just say it's American. Many of the key ingredients were home-grown, and the final result was inspired by the variety of flavors we're lucky to experience here.
It doesn't seem as all-American as apple pie, but I think a sundry dish like this speaks a bit of our own disparate origins, a melting pot that is stirred by the children of exiles, eager to make something new and bring a part of the old country back for seat at the dinner table.
|Home-grown garden bounty included scary claw carrot - Photos by Wasabi Prime|
Post-Script: Big THANKS to Tastespotting, Serious Eats' Photograzing and FoodGawker for choosing photos from this post. Much appreciated and happy eating!!