The prompt – Pittsburgh is famous for slaw and fries on sandwiches, cheese on fries on salads, pierogies, and more food speciality items. Did you have these types of items when you were growing up? Does the Pittsburgh food of your childhood carry into your adulthood?
I had my very first pierogie courtesy of Mrs. T in Baton Rouge, Louisiana when I was 22 years old. Ahem.
I remember cheese on salads in restaurants. I remember fries on sandwiches at Primanti’s in the Strip District. I do not remember doing much around traditional Lenten foods as kids.
The few food items that have carried over into adult life are Lipton Noodle soup, Eat-n-Park clam chowder, and well, a lot of soup.
I moved back to Pittsburgh at age 28. That’s when I was introduced to fish fries and n’at.
I can’t even give my parents a sarcastic “Ok, Boomer” for the lack of piergoi – they are both part of the pre-Boomer Silent Generation and grew up in Irish-German- American families devoid of cultural food traditions. Who knows why? Oh, yes, partly due to war and partly due to nativist pressure to assimilate even four generations after arrival.
Ok, Silent Generation doesn’t have the same snappy quirkiness. I think in the cultural generation discussion, we often forget that a lot of us Gen Xers were not raised by Boomers so we lack both the hipster whimsy of reclaiming Grandma’s cultural foods with a twist of appropriation or the Boomer predilection for elevating frozen foods to classic American cuisine.
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