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Special Food Holidays

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

Hi all, 

 

I have got a question for you and weirdly enough I could not find any hit on the search system. The reason why I am asking the following is that I am very keen on the history of food (or the good stories). 

 

My question is, who knows some special (almost forgotton) Food holidays?

 

Days we remember some special 'food happening things'. For example: I live in Holland. At the first day of the white asparagus season we 'celebrate' 'St Jan' which is on the 24th of June (similar to Mid-summer fest). Which tradionaly means the summer is a go and here in Europe we celebrated this with huge bonfires (in Porto, Portugal they still do). After the party, which has died in modern world, the people returned to their fields and 'plowed' the first white asparagus. Also called the white gold of Holland. 

 

Anyways this is Dutch tradition and I am looking forward to hear some America, English basically any tradition possible that is combined with some 'food happening' thingy. 

post #2 of 7

Well, our Thanksgiving was originally a harvest festival and still features such "new world" foods as hard squash (pumpkins, in particular) cranberries, turkey and in a lot of places, corn-based bread stuffing. More than any other holiday here, it is still all about the food--those foods in particular.

 

The US is so big that harvests of specific foods take place in different places at different times and some things are only grown in certain climate zones--there are 8 or 9 such zones in the US. I can get Southern grown peaches at the market in the late spring/early summer while here in Illinois I eat locally grown peaches until well into September. There are lots of regional/localized food festivals rather than national holidays. Traverse City, Michigan, which grows a lot of the country's cherries, celebrates cherry festival in early July, for example. There is a parade, they crown a local boy and girl cherry prince and princess, there is a stage with music, cherries are for sale everywhere and served in all kinds of foodstuffs, etc.There are many of those kinds of celebrations around the country. Gilroy, California has a famous Garlic Festival. Mostly, such festivals are more about marketing than traditional foodways.

 

Most states also have a State Fair some time during the summer, where state agriculture/food products are celebrated, with awards given to growers and livestock producers who enter competitions.

 

Our food production system is so industrialized, monoculture-based, and so dependent on a transient, poorly paid, mainly immigrant work force, that one could argue that these days the harvest of food crops resists the celebration of actual food production traditions.

post #3 of 7

Washington State also has a cherry fest. They grow Montmorency Cherries which are very good.

Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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post #4 of 7

Lets not forget La Tomatillas that happen around europe

Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You.

Dr.Seuss

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Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You.

Dr.Seuss

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post #5 of 7

In Krete there is a festival that celebrates the making of traditional Kretan booze called raki.  It happens throughout October when the grapes are harvested and then pressed to make wine, though the wine is not good and not really celebrated. The real celebration comes when the pressed grapes are used to make raki, and everyone that owns a vineyard makes raki.  Once it is made they host a big party to show off their new booze and roast pigs and live it up.  Basically everyone is drunk for the whole month of October.

 

As ChicagoTerry has so depressingly described, the American people are very far removed from their food sources.  It's hard to celebrate in a supermarket and nobody celebrates seasonal food beyond restaurants.  Though personally I do myself.  

"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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post #6 of 7
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the comments, nice to read. Especially the post of ChicagoTerry. 
 
Quote:
  Basically everyone is drunk for the whole month of October.

I know where my holiday in October 2014 is going! ;) 

post #7 of 7

In ancient Hawaii there was Makahiki

I hope that you will take a moment to read the hyperlink, really interesting to read about a culture that has disappeared 

Not to mention the language, religion, everything basically is gone, but I digress, we're are talking about food... the food practices in ancient Hawaii are fascinating as well.

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