General Discussion

Regional Foods

I love it when restaurants play "fast and loose" with regional cuisines but I know it doesn't sit well with some others.

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General Discussion 35

I love it when restaurants play "fast and loose" with regional cuisines but I know it doesn't sit well with some others.

c oliver | Sep 9, 2009 01:15 PM

I saw a thread this morning where someone was talking about a sushi restaurant that had Mexican cooks and they were adding some Mexican elements, i.e., hot peppers, to some of the food. He was praising that and I thought 'wow, how good that sounds.' Then there was another thread where a CH was very NOT admiring of a Tex-Mex restaurant that used feta in one of their dishes. REALLY not pleased. Recently we dined with two CHs in NYC. One resto was Itzocan on the UES which serves Mexican ingredients prepared with French techniques. It was terrific. We also had lunch at Momofuku Ssam with a CH where the sky's the limit with his combinations. Their "pork bun" is unlikely any I'd ever seen and I could have easily eaten several of them.

The above examples got me to thinking - always dangerous. I really love it when they start "mixin' things up." Sure, there are times I want a beef burger medium rare with mayo, Cheddar cheese and red onion on it. But I'll also gladly take a burger with foie gras in the center or the Mar-a-Lago turkey burger. In thinking about this, I guess the whole "fusion" thing from the past is simply part of a lot of the great cooking that's going on today. And I'm happy for it. I don't read the same books over and over; why would I want to eat the same food prepared the same way every time? I've really racked my brain trying to think of a single dish that I wouldn't like done in some alternative ways and am just not coming up with anything. Not every single time but plenty of times. But I crave adventures and change in my life.

So do others consider certain foods and preps sacrosanct or can they be fiddled with?

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