If you have an Audible subscription, every month they let you choose two free titles from a handful of their Audible Originals. One of the titles I picked this month was "Twain's Feast" - they took a list of food that Mark Twain wanted at a feast of his, foods that he missed when he traveled, and broke down what those foods would have meant to him, and what they looked like culturally.
It's also narrated in part by Nick Offerman, which didn't hurt. He's got a voice that I would be okay with narrating a phone book.
If you have the change to listen to Twain's Feast, I do recommend it. Even as someone who isn't obsessed with Mark Twain, I thought the whole thing was really interesting, and is the jumping point for the rest of this post.
Last time Matt and I went up to New York, we picked up a couple loaves of Felix Roma bread. I hadn't had it in a really long time, but all I remembered was that it was very good italian bread. Later, when Matt said that he wanted to drive back up to NY for more bread, I felt vindicated. It wasn't just my memory that made the bread good, it must be legitimately good!
So between that and Twain's Feast, I got to thinking: What would my ultimate feast look like? What are foods that I not only like, but have some significance?
I thought I'd start with foods that I associate with states I've lived in:
Spiedies from New York
Sopapillas from Colorado, and the long defunct El Matador restaurant
Cheesesteaks and Gelatis from New Jersey, as well as a cheese pizza from Wing King in Maple Shade - I literally have dreams periodically about being in NJ and being able to get a pizza from there. Oh, and bread from DelBuono's bakery. Oh! And a carmine pizza from Bertucci's. It's not on the menu anymore, but it had carmelized onions and fresh mozzarella over a roasted tomato sauce. Fresh mozzarella is my jam. I wouldn't be upset if there was a soft pretzel there either.
Foods that I associate with people include:
My Mom's Mac and Cheese with peaches. Yes, peaches.
Chocolate chip cookies using a recipe from my Aunt Sally, and Sugar cookies from my Grandma Judy's recipe.
We'll make fruit salad from my great Aunt Margaret's recipe - it's fruit salad in the most flexible definition ... but delicious.
Just because I plain like them, there'd need to be mashed potatoes, corned beef, and manicotti.
This is all just off the top of my head, so I'm sure there are things I've forgotten. But if I had the stomach for all of it, I would enjoy the living daylights out of this meal.
That being said, I was hungry when I started this, and now I'm even more hungry. So I'm going to go scrounge up some supper - I don't think it'll be nearly as good as anything on this list though.