Defining American cuisine is quite difficult as it’s a hotchpotch of cuisines brought in the country by immigrants from across the world. American home cooks and chefs get inspiration in the cuisines of several countries including China, India, Japan, Thailand, Italy, Mexico, France, Morocco, Vietnam Greece, Spain and many others.
While in any part of the United States, you will find its seafood restaurants, steak houses, pizza parlors, sandwich shops and grill settings, each region does have its distinct cuisine.
New England Cuisine
New England is famous for its high quality seafood, including oysters, lobsters, scallops, clams, flounders, swordfish and cods. Traditional New England dishes are simple and are keen on enhancing the fresh seafood flavor without any pungent seasonings or elaborate sauces. Blueberries, cranberries and pure maple syrup are native to the region and are often used in the traditional New England fare.
The states in the US’s mid-Atlantic region have fertile farmlands and ample seafood and fish. Maryland crabs, Dover sole and Chesapeake Bay oysters are known for their top quality. Virginia hams are considered the best in the country and the summer yields abundant crops of Jersey beefsteak tomatoes as well as butter-and-sugar corn. Mid-Atlantic cuisine too is focused on enhancing fresh and pure flavors.
The southern cuisine truly represents the hospitality of the region. Catfish, fried chicken, biscuits, cornbread, sweet tea, collared greens, bourbon and pecans are only a few of the comfort foods the region has to offer.
Head a little towards south to Florida and the influences of the Caribbean and Latin America will be seen in the cuisine called Floribbean. To enliven the flavors of poultry, seafood and meat, fresh Florida citrus is used along with spices and chiles. Highlights of this cuisine are fresh shrimp, snapper and grouper that are native to the Gulf of Mexico and oysters from Apalachicola Bay that are famous among oyster enthusiasts.
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Gulf Coast Cuisine
The Gulf states are places where you will get both Cajun and Creole cuisines. Creole cuisine started off in Louisiana and combines features of African, French, Caribbean and Spanish cuisines. Cajun and Creole dishes may be easily confused because same ingredients are used in both, such as crawfish and shrimp, bay leaves, parsley, cayenne pepper and the base made of bell pepper, onion and celery.
Midwest is America’s heartland and its cuisine originates from Swedish, German, Hungarian and Scandinavian cuisines. Known for its high quality dairy products, the cuisine essentially makes ample use of milk, cheese, butter and eggs.
Plus there are southwest cuisine, California cuisine, Pacific Northwest cuisine and Hawaiian cuisine which make American cuisine rich. Taste these incredible cuisines and get an unforgettable gustatory experience.