Thursday, September 15, 2011

Favorite Hoosier foods?

September 15, 2011

We asked library visitors to the "Food for Thought" exhibit hosted at the West Lafayette Public Library in late August/early September this question: "what is your favorite Indiana food?" 

We received these responses:
  • Butter
  • Chicken and Noodles
  • Corn on the cobb
  • Corn pudding
  •  Elephant Ears
  •  Fried catfish and onion rings: Every locally owned restaurant (almost) has fried catfish & onion rings.  Fish frys throughout the state, etc. 
  • Hog roast & sweet corn
  • Indiana corn
  • Macaroni and cheese
  • Pumpkin pie
  • Rhubarb pie
  • Sweet tea : showing up in restaurants in mid North Indiana; long time in South Hoosierland! 
  • Watermelon

Do we include YOUR favorite Hoosier food in this list?  

What would YOU like to add to this list of favorite Indiana foods?

Friday, September 2, 2011

Younger Food Memories from the West Lafayette Farmer's Market, September 1

We asked our some of the younger visitors to the Library's booth at the West Lafayette Farmer's Market on September 1 what their favorite Hoosier foods are and many of them provided replies...

Ice cream - Lilly

Strawberries - Katie

Ice cream - Anna

Ice cream - Laurie

Mac-n-cheese - Holly

Ice cream - Madeline

Strawberries - Moira

Ice Cream - Dash

Ribs - Dawson

Pizza - Jackson

Mac and cheese - Madeline

Pizza, chickena and noodles, corn (again!) and "chinese hamburger casserole" are highlights

What is your favorite food memory from your childhood?   I remember when my brother and I were approximately 8 and 10 years old. Our mom would cook a dish called Chinese Hamburger Casserole. We just didn’t like it and would force a gag reflex to prove it. That didn’t go over very well with mom and dad and we were still forced to eat it. Sometime later that recipe mysteriously disappeared. To this day we still joke about this with mom as she claims my brother and I had something to do with this disappearance. We claim no responsibility! 
What is your favorite food grown in Indiana and why?   Sweet corn. No question. Hot, fresh, buttered up and lightly salted. To me the sweet corn signals summer and picnics with family and friends.  - Dr. Scott D. Hanback,  Superintendent, Tippecanoe School Corporation

What is your family's greatest food-related tradition?  Where did the tradition come from?  Does it relate to a special time of the year?   My grandma always makes chicken & noodles (from scratch!) for Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter, etc.  It started because I don't like turkey, so she accommodated her -at the time- only grandchild, and it just became tradition.

What food best describes home?  Anything homemade.  Meatloaf, spaghetti, cookies, pies.  Seems like the women in our family are always in the kitchen whipping something up, rarely from a box.
What is your signature dish?  Recite as much of the recipe as you can!  Venison roast.  I use a dutch oven to cook it all.  Two cups beef broth, two cups apple juice, set the venison in there & cook for two hours.  Add basil & mint to a small cheesecloth pouch & set on top of the roast.  After an hour add potatoes & veggies, cook three more hours.  Husband usually sits at he ktichen table & waits while doing a corssword puzzle.

What is your favorite food grown in Indiana and why? Corn, I suppose.  That's all I ever hear about, thanks to commericals ("There's more than corn in Indiana...")

What is your favorite food memory?  My momma teaching me to make snickerdoodles.  I made them for a 4-H fair project & won a blue ribbon.  Daddy & my uncle ate mort of the "rejects" for us.

What type of farmer would you most like to be and why? Dairy.  My grandmother was raised on a  dairy farm (Sites Dairy), and my husband has a family friend that has a daily farm.  Cows are such gentle creatures.  - ANONYMOUS, West Lafayette Library, September 2011

What type of farmer would you most like to be and why?  Beef production.  Cattle ranch in Wyoming but train my cattle to sleep until 11 am.

What is your family's greatest food-related tradition?  Where did the tradition come from?  Does it relate to a special time of the year?
Christmas Eve tradition is broiled jumbo shrimp with real St. Elmo's style cocktail sauce and oyster stew. Christmas Day we always have some sort of beef roast or stew like prime ranch rib roast Porterhouse or regal crown roast.  Plus a great chocolate dessert.  Oyster stew and beef tradition comes form my Mom!

What is your signature dish? Recite as much of the recipe as you can!
First, the night before I make pizza dough and refrigerate it all night.  Also I get 56 oz. of fresh chopped (large canned) tomatoes, 2 cans basil or oregano crushed tomato paste, 2 bulbs of garlic, diced; 1 cup dry red peppers and chicken broth. Simmer [sauce] 3 hours, cool, refrigerate.  Boars Heath peperoni, D&R sweet and hot stuffed sausage, 8 oz Provolone, 8 oz Mozzarella, anchovies, red onion, green olive Kalamata olive for toppings.  I cook pizza dough 4 minutes, then add sauce, cheese toppings, rest of cheese and cook at 450 degrees.  - ANONYMOUS, West Lafayette Public Library, September 2011

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Memoires of Corn and pizza and more

So many food memories we're receiving are linked to childhood and our memories of home.....

What is your favorite food memory as a child?  I remember tussling with my dad over the corn.  It didn’t matter what form it was in, corn on the cob; fried corn; corn out of the can; whoever grabbed the platter or bowl first would say, “Does anyone else want any corn?”  It was a running joke in our family and still is!

What food best describes home for you?  White beans and corn cakes.  I am from the south, (Memphis, TN) and we fried everything.  We would take the hot corn cakes, which looked like pancakes, and put tons of white beans (also called Navy Beans) on top.  There was a lot of meat in those beans as well, usually some kind of ham or bacon.  I added lots of ketchup too.  Salmon patties were also a favorite. Loved biting into the bones!  Again, lots of ketchup!

What is your favorite food grown in Indiana and why?  Corn, see above answer! - Linda Eales, West Lafayette Public Library Board member and Assistant Curator, SAMARA House, West Lafayette

What is your favorite food memory?  During the winter time as a child my parents would have pizza from an Italian pizzeria that used their own homemade pizza sauce and made their own dough.  this was always our Sunday evening meal.

What food best describes home?  Homemade pizza
What is your favorite food grown in Indiana and why? Pork.  I love to slow smoke whole shoulders for about 12 hours at 210 degrees F in a smoker with fire box on mostly charcoal and hickory for an irresistible tasting chopped pork sandwich. - West Lafayette Library visitor, Anonymous

What is your favorite food memory as a child?  --Watermelon! My grandpa told me that, as a child, he was employed to walk through the watermelon fields. A truck would drive slowly through, and he and his friends would pick the melons and toss them in the truck. He said every once in a while they'd break a melon on their knee and eat the precious "heart" of the watermelon -- the part in the center that's seedless and must juicy. I always think of that story when I eat good watermelon. :)

What food best describes home for you? --Indiana sweet corn, by far. Grilling it, covering it with butter and salt, and sitting out side with family on a July evening.  - 2000's Purdue Graduate,  Anonymous