This comment was posted to my last entry by and anonymous writer:
'I was born and raised in Lancaster, but had the good fortune to be schooled in New Orleans. Although I am the first one to stand up for many things South Central PA; I am also the first to acknowledge that our PA Swiss/German cuisene is no match for the Spanish/French/Creole/Cajun flavours that South Central LA is famous for. I think what you are doing is wonderful, but our culture is what it is and as my grandfather said..."wishing won't make it so." '
I've thought of a number of ways to respond to this comment and have settled on addressing it in a full post.
There are a number of ideas that jump to my mind with regards to this comment. First and foremost is that you can't simply say 'we're better' without something to back it up. That's like the team that wags their finger saying 'we're #1' without putting on their pads and stepping on the field of play. Louisiana has beignets, PA has faschnauts. New Orleans has King Cake and PA has shoo fly pie. LA has jambalaya and PA has slippery pot pie. Both areas have a rich history and heritage with regards to charcuterie and using every bit of the animal.....and so on.....I could do this all day.
The part of this post that I actually wanted to address is the idea that 'our culture is what it is and wishing won't make it so'. I was born and raised in central PA and have CHOSEN to come back to this area to do what I love to do and celebrate the flavors of my area. I appreciate how diverse our American food culture is and especially appreciate those who work tirelessly to represent the individual flavors and culture of their respective areas. I think it is unfortunate that the person who posted this comment doesn't feel the same way about where they were born and raised, and quite frankly doesn't stand behind the flavors of south central LA enough to post their name along with their words. I'm not 'wishing' for anything with regards to MY culture. It stands proudly on its on, just like the foods of the American Southwest, the Pacific Northwest, New England and Louisiana. I don't need to think that any one is any better than the other. They are all special in their own way and we should be proud to live in a country where such a diverse food culture is represented.
I have to be honest here: I'm pissed off. I'm pissed off that somebody's picking on the area that I love. However, I'd like to thank you, anonymous poster. Your post has made me take the time to sit down and write this response. Your post has stoked an already raging fire in my belly and now I'm going to work even harder to make sure that people can be exposed to the flavors that I love. The flavors of my childhood. Listen, I'm not 'wishing it'.....I'm DOING IT.