(Roughly) Daily

Posts Tagged ‘spaghetti

“What we need in this country is a general improvement in eating”*…



A Mexican official examines chili powder at an American factory, Gebhardt Mexican Foods Company


Gumbo. Chile con queso. California roll. Spaghetti and meatballs.

The names are as familiar as household brands. Yet how much do you know about these dishes? Based on the names alone, with their roots in other languages and other cultures, each dish sounds like an import. In some ways, they are. But each dish also morphed and adapted to its new environment, transforming into something uniquely American.

Some transformed through industrialization. Another required the ingenuity of chefs willing to break from tradition. One adapted, and continues to adapt, to the dizzying constellation of cultures that is New Orleans…

How four dishes with roots in other lands tell a story of immigration and transformation: “Made in America.”

* H.L. Mencken (who arguably got, per the article linked above, what he asked for)


As we dig in, we might send tasty birthday greetings to Ettore “Hector” Boiardi; he was born on this date in 1897.  An Italian immigrant who became a successful chef (at The Plaza and the Greenbrier), he opened his first restaurant, Il Giardino d’Italia (The Garden of Italy) in Cleveland in 1926.  The following year he met Maurice and Eva Weiner, patrons of his restaurant and owners of a local self-service grocery store chain; they helped him market his spaghetti sauce in jars… and the heat-and-eat Italian food empire that became known as Chef Boy-Ar-Dee was born.  Boiardi became a wealthy man– and something of a celebrity via his appearances in television commercials for his products.

220px-Chefboyardeepic source



Written by (Roughly) Daily

October 22, 2019 at 1:01 am

Che sarà…


Pepperoni pizza, garlic bread, Italian dressing…  now spaghetti and meatballs joins the list of Italian foods that aren’t Italian.

The full story at Smithsonian. [photo via]


As we we twirl our forks, we might recall that it was on this date in 1956 that Pulitzer Prize-winning dramatist Arthur Miller and silver screen icon Marilyn Monroe were wed.  They held a press conference at Miller’s house in Roxbury, Connecticut, whose local newspaper had dryly announced the day before, “Local Resident Will Marry Miss Monroe of Hollywood,” adding, “Roxbury Only Spot in World to Greet News Calmly.”  Once the 400 pressmen had gone away, the couple sneaked off to the Westchester County Court House in nearby White Plains, where they were married shortly before 7.30 pm. The ceremony lasted just over four minutes; the marriage, just over four years.



Written by (Roughly) Daily

June 29, 2013 at 1:01 am

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