All Over the Map! Our Diverse All-American 4th of July Feast

Hot DogAs I sit down to put together the menu for our annual 4th of July celebration, it strikes me that diversity is not only key to the success of our country, but also key to the tastiness of our yearly All-American Celebration. This year our menu includes the following components:

Grilled Hot Dogs – American (with roots from sausages in Germany)

“German Americans brought us weinerwurst, German for Vienna sausage, which eventually became shortened to wiener. Other German immigrants referred to smoked sausages as bundewurst, which is German for dog sausage. By the late 1920’s, wienie roasts became the rage, with guests bringing their own hot dogs to roast over an open fire. ” – Peggy Trowbridge Filipone, Guide

Grilled Corn on the Cob – Native American

“Scientists believe people living in central Mexico developed corn at least 7000 years ago. It was started from a wild grass called teosinte. Teosinte looked very different from our corn today. The kernels were small and were not placed close together like kernels on the husked ear of modern corn. Also known as maize Indians throughout North and South America, eventually depended upon this crop for much of their food.” – Camp Silos

Watermelon – AfricanWatermelon

“Watermelons are thought to be native of the Kalahari desert in Africa, due to David Livingstone describing them as “abundant” in that region. One can find, still today, plants of what is believed to be the ancestor of watermelons, called Tsamma melon (Citrullus lanatus var tastius). The Tsamma melon can also be found in Baja California (it was brought there by human intervention, though) and African regions such as Zimbabwe, where it is known by the name of “mwiwa” (or “iswe, nwiwa”): Tsammas’ flesh is similar to watermelons, and they have pinnatifid leaves. They are used in Africa to make jams due to their high content of pectin.” – WatermelonPoint

Guacamole Dip and Tortilla Chips – Native American (Aztecs in what is today Mexico)

“Seriously, that’s it. When the Spaniards encountered the Aztec empire back in the 1500s, the locals were making a sauce called ahuaca-mulli, which means “avocado-mixture.” The dish was prepared by mashing avocados, sometimes with tomatoes and onions. Sound familiar? Add a few hot peppers and a touch of cilantro, and you’ve got modern guac.” – Burritophile

Potato Salad – European

“Although potato salad has become as synonymous with America as apple pie, it was originally a European creation. Potato salad was first concocted by Spanish explorers after arriving in Europe from the New World in the 16th century. The first potato salads were normally cooked and/or dressed with vinegar or wine in contrast to their modern American counterparts, which are traditionally slathered in creamy mayonnaise.” – Gourmet Live

What’s on your celebration menu? Add your recipes in the comments. Happy 4th of July!

About SherryHoldridge

At OHSAY USA she leads the fastest growing Made in American gift store which provides quality goods from manufacturers across America. OHSAY USA's mission is centered on Citizenship. "To help our neighbors by stimulating job growth and renewing a sense of pride and opportunity in the place we live. We provide Americans a central source to buy quality American made goods from inventors, designers and even companies who have been here since the 1800's." She also leads Austin's environmental information network, Urban Green ATX, which has a base of 2,300 eco business leaders in Austin following LOHAS principals. Previously Sherry Holdridge spent 20 years assisting Fortune 500 companies and mid-size businesses with their marketing strategies and helped launch iconic toys which now sit on the office desk of millions of people.

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