Fourth of July is one of those holidays that has incredibly precise traditions. Almost everyone shoots off fireworks, nearly everybody spends a good portion of the day outside and it is completely unheard of to celebrate Independence Day by eating bangers and mash. Most people view the Fourth as another major grilling holiday, enjoying American standards like hot dogs and cheeseburgers year after year.
Sure, there’s no shame in continuing a tradition, but why not branch out this year and add some foods that are surprisingly American to your July 4th menus?
It shouldn’t come as much of a surprise that a deep-fried burrito is 100 percent American. Though no one knows the exact origin of the fried food, a common story is that a cook accidentally dropped a burrito into a fryer, creating the chimi. Serve a healthier baked version of this dish filled with beef, chicken or vegetables to add a little kick to your celebration this year.
Though pizza originated in Italy, the form we enjoy today came to be in America. What’s the distinction? Using tomato sauce as a base for the rest of the toppings. A simple pizza topped with sauce and cheese would make a festive-looking meal for the Fourth, though it may be challenging to find something blue to add to make it a fully patriotic pizza!
German Chocolate Cake
It would make sense that the rich chocolate cake with caramel-flavored coconut-filled frosting comes from Germany. After all, the country is known for its chocolate. However, the name of the cake doesn’t get its name from a country, but rather a person. German chocolate was invented by American Sam German in 1852 as a flavoring for the cake.
Much of what is considered Chinese food in the States is as American as a chimichanga. General Tso’s chicken, crab rangoon, eggless egg rolls, Chinese chicken salad and chow mein are all American creations, though that doesn’t make them any less enjoyable. Have a little fun with your Fourth of July menu and serve an all “Chinese” food meal.
Remember, if you just can’t avoid serving something traditional, there’s nothing as American as apple pie. Have a Happy Fourth of July!