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Late last week, in honor of the 4th of July holiday weekend, MSNBC posted a highly subjective list of top ten foods that helped to make the US the nation that it has become.

Included on the list were:

1. New England Clam Chowder (Massachusetts)
2. Pastrami (NY)
3. Shoofly Pie (Pennsylvania)
4. Smithfield Ham (Virginia)
5. Po-boys (Louisiana)
6. Fajitas (Texas)
7. Chicago Hot Dogs (Illinois)
8. Chile Verde (New Mexico)
9. San Francisco Sourdough Bread (California)
10. Olympia Oysters (Washington)

MSNBC noted that the list wasn’t meant to be all-inclusive…barbecue wasn’t included, for example, because there are so many different kinds from so many different regions. But these ten foods, according to the site, reflect specific places and palates, and a specific American cuisine.
KC's View:
The question we would ask is how many food stores around the US over the past week, approaching a holiday upon which we celebrate the birth of our nation, took advantage of the opportunity not just to sell familiar foods, but to raise people’s consciousness about American regional cuisine?

Few, we expect. We never would have thought about it had we not read this article on MSNBC.

But what a great opportunity it would have been, not just to focus on these great American foods, but also to get customers to nominate their favorite American dishes, and maybe have some sort of cooking/tasting contest.

Just an idea.

We all have our favorites. For example, we might have added key lime pie or bread pudding to the list. And you probably would have your own suggestions. But this is what creates merchandising and marketing excitement.

Tell you one thing. Of the top 10 foods listed by MSNBC, the only one we’ve never had is Shoefly Pie…and this has created a desire on our part to do something about this gap in our gastronomic education.

(True confession here: both of our sons were out on the evening of July 4th, and we didn’t feel like cooking. So we ordered in Chinese.)