It’s the simplest of desserts, made by hand and cooked outdoors, usually on a camping trip with friends and family and Rick. There are lighting bugs twinkling, and you eat the s’mores around a campfire, while telling scary stories that are definitely made up. Your hands get chocolatey and marshmallowy and start to stick to pine needles and attract bugs. It’s messy, delicious, nostalgic, and simple. It’s America as the Founding Fathers intended it. Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to find a sharp stick.
Country-fried steak is a plate full of American frugality — a cheap cut of meat, turned into a full, tasty meal thanks to spiced breading. The Texas “chicken-fried” variant takes the already delicious dish and makes it bigger and better, like they do in that state, by deep-frying it and then covering it in just the right amount of peppery gravy to sop up at a cafe somewhere in cattle-country.
There are few things more American than this encased mish-mash of meats (a porky symbol of America’s melting pot?!) that can be grilled, boiled, microwaved, or even baked and served in beans, mixed into stews, or topped with kraut. But a basic dog, sandwiched between a sliced bun, with a squiggle of ketchup and mustard says Summertime, sprinklers, and obesity. It doesn’t get more American than that — until you are reminded of that “mish-mash of meats” part.