Welcome to the “Food Issue.” While we cover the local epicurean scene as part of our regular editorial rotation, we take our annual ode to eating up a notch. This year, we decided to pair food with some travel, widening our palates to consider some of the most iconic dishes from around our state.
And just what says “Michigan” when it comes to food? That depends on where you look.
Turn your gaze far north, and consider the mighty pasty. Associate Editor Leyland DeVito had never tasted one — or been to the Upper Peninsula. So he killed two birds with one stone, heading over the bridge to search for the best examples of the meat-filled delicacy.
Managing Editor Dorothy Hernandez headed northwest to Bellaire to learn about the art of smoking whitefish.
We cast our net a bit closer to home when Associate Editor Jeff Waraniak took a sensible — and five-sensed — approach to argue why Detroit-style pizza rules over those New York or Chicago pretenders.
Others put in their two “scents” worth: Journalism professor Joe Grimm and co-author of the book Coney Detroit explores the chili-drenched dog’s origins. He reveals his sources, but in the tradition of media neutrality, does not name his favorite coney. His advice: “Trust your tastes, bud.”
We also asked Helen Kwong, a Macomb County native turned New York-based NBC News research analyst, to explain the ABCs of almond boneless chicken. Read about how much she misses what is apparently an original Michigan “comfort food.”
As for me? I’ll set the record “strait.” As an annual Labor Day visitor to the Mackinac area, I couldn’t justify driving way up north to write about fudge.
After all, the picture at left of a much younger me in the Fort Michilimackinac stocks reveals that I’m guilty as charged when it comes to being a “fudgie.”