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Smrt - i moguće ponovno rođenje - poznatog španskog restorana

Smrt - i moguće ponovno rođenje - poznatog španskog restorana

El Racó de Can Fabes, u katalonskom gradu Sant Celoni, 30 kilometara sjeveroistočno od Barselone, bio je prvi katalonski restoran sa tri zvjezdice i dugo je zadržao reputaciju jednog od najboljih mjesta za jelo u Španiji-čak i nakon iznenadne smrti njegovog tvorca, Santi Santamaria, u Singapuru 2011. godine i naknadni gubitak Michelinove zvijezde. Vremena i ukusi se ipak mijenjaju, pa čak ni prisustvo talentovanog Xaviera Pellicera u kuhinji Can Fabes nije moglo održati mjesto ispunjenim i raditi na svom bivšem nivou. Tako su udovica Santamarije Ángels i njihova kći Regina, koje su upravljale mjestom, nedavno najavljeno da će se zatvoriti 31. avgusta.

Svratio sam u Can Fabes prošle sedmice, vozeći se od Costa Brave do Barcelone, na posljednji ručak. Restoran nije bio prazan, iako je bilo slobodnih stolova; usluga je bila besprekorna. Pellicer je otišao prije nekoliko mjeseci i navodno planira otvoriti restoran s rižom u Barceloneti, staroj ribarskoj četvrti u glavnom gradu Katalonije - ali kuhanje u Can Fabesu, koje su preuzela dva dugogodišnja veterana kuhinje, bilo je vrhunsko. Imali smo jedno od prepoznatljivih jela Santamarije, raviole sa škampima - trik je u tome što prozirne kriške škampi tvore „tjesteninu“, a šumske gljive su punjenje (postojalo je i ono što pretpostavljam da se mora opisati kao carpaccio od škampa na bočnoj ploči); espardenyes, izvanredni morski puževi koji se jedu samo na katalonskoj obali, zapečeni do te mjere da su lagano karamelizirani i bačeni šišarkama; sirove marinirane svježe srdele s bademima i kavijarom od lososa; fileti bakalara sa slanom paprikom; i jednostavna pečena golubica u bogatom umaku od crnog vina. Nije bilo modernističke pirotehnike, samo puno čistih, intenzivnih okusa koji su uhvatili suštinu katalonskog sela i obale.

U službenom priopćenju predstojećeg propasti restorana napominje se da "[priča] o Can Fabesu neće završiti 31. augusta, već će živjeti u sadašnjim i budućim projektima svih ljudi koji su prošli kroz našu kuhinju i našu blagovaonicu, i u sjećanju na hiljade gostiju koji su uvijek bili naš razlog postojanja. " Kako se ispostavilo, prema Regini, moglo bi se živjeti na druge načine. "Može li Fabes biti gotov", rekla mi je, "ali obratilo nam se nekoliko ljudi koji žele ponovno otvoriti još nešto ovdje. Bilo bi ležernije, svakako, ali bismo i dalje bili uključeni. Zatvorit ćemo prema rasporedu, a Uzmite malo slobodnog vremena. Ali vjerovatno ćemo se vratiti, na ovaj ili onaj način. "


Scena hrane u New Orleansu bogata je iznenađujućom istorijom

Prije dvije godine New Orleans je napunio 300 godina, a slavni grad koji nije odnio uragan Katrina ne samo da se vratio, već je i bolji nego ikad. Kultura hrane i pića Big Easy-a-u restoranima kao i u domaćoj kuhinji-zasluženo je poznata. Zapravo, to se voli. Postoji još nešto u kuhinji NOLA -e zbog koje stoji iznad gomile: činjenica da je čitava „kuhinja“ prepoznatljiva - ne samo jedno ili dva jela, što je uobičajenije - kao izvorna u gradu u Sjedinjenim Državama. O ovoj izuzetnoj kuhinji razgovarali smo s Liz Williams, osnivačicom Southern Museum of Food and Beverage Museum u New Orleansu, rođenom New Orleanian-u i autoricom nagrađivane knjige “New Orleans-A Food Biography”.

New Orleans: Biografija hrane, 18,47 USD na Amazonu

Pročitajte gradska ukusna jela bogate istorije.

Chowhound: U “New Orleans -Biography of Food” stvorili ste vremenski slijed događaja vezanih za stvaranje NOLA -ine kuhinje koji se kreću od 1492. do 2010. Možete li podijeliti svoja razmišljanja s nama o tome koji od tih događaja su bili najvažniji u uslovi oblikovanja gradske hrane u ono što je danas?

LW: Neke stvari za koje mislim da su najvažnije za našu hranu zapravo nemaju veze s tačnim trenutkom. Jedna stvar koju mislim da je jako važna i često se zaboravlja je čitava stvar o kolumbijskoj razmjeni i da se ovdje već jelo kada su došli Francuzi i osnovali grad. Bazu hrane već su identificirali ljudi koji su ovdje živjeli - znali su i već su uzgajali kamenice, na primjer, znali su i jeli bizone i stvarali dimljene bizone koje su mogli držati cijelu godinu - a to je u osnovi porijeklo onoga što Cajuni danas nazivaju "tasso". Bilo je paradajza, oraha i fil é napravljenog od sassafrasa, pa ne bismo imali ono što imamo da sve to ne upijemo. Trebalo je započeti, pa je to važna kuhinja.

Chowhound: Dakle, postojala je domaća kuhinja i izvorna kultura hrane koja je imala veze s onim što je dobro raslo na tom području i sa onim što su ljudi koji su tamo živjeli jeli kada je to područje kolonizirano, što i danas utječe na kuhinju?

LW: Tako je. Grad su 1718. godine osnovala braća Le Moyne. Bili su Francuzi u smislu da potječu iz "Nove Francuske" (Kanada), ali nikada nisu kročili nogom u stvarnu Francusku. Ali smatrani su Francuzima na način na koji su Francuzi svako mjesto koje je postalo dio Francuske smatrali Francuskom, koja se razlikuje od Engleza, koji su uvijek znali da postoji Engleska i da postoje kolonije. Ali Francuzi su imali drugačiji pristup: ovo nije bila kolonija Francuske, ovo je bilo proširenje Francuske.

Braća su bila hvatači, i vrlo dobro poznavali starosjedioce Nove Francuske, pa su kad su došli ovdje znali da moraju naučiti o hrani izravno od domaćih ljudi. Zato se nisu plašili da jedu aligatora, i sve takve stvari, jer je to bio francuski aligator. Englezi, koji su za razliku od toga htjeli nastaviti svoj engleski identitet jedući kao Englez, imali su rana naselja u kojima su svi doslovno umirali od gladi jer nisu jeli kao domaći.

Chowhound: Dakle, u tom trenutku se smatralo da je novonaseljena NOLA zapravo Francuska?

LW: Da, i ubrzo nakon toga (posebno u Parizu) Francuzi su razvijali restoran. Velika francuska kuhinja bila je u svojim najranijim fazama razvoja, pa su ljudi koji su se ovdje nastanili sa sobom donijeli način razmišljanja o cijelom Dobu prosvjetiteljstva, koje se u Francuskoj primjenjivalo na umjetnost - od kojih su jedu Francuzi i kuvanje. To je značilo da je način razmišljanja za razvoj kuhinje već bio u ljudima koji su ovdje bili.

Chowhound: Dakle, NOLA je počela razvijati vlastitu novu kuhinju još prije 1800 -ih?

LW: Da. Zatim je 1763. NOLA ustupljena Španiji, pa smo zapravo bili Španjolci do 1803. godine, što je bila kupovina u Louisiani, pa smo Španjolci bili dulji nego što smo bili Francuzi. Mnogi ljudi toga nisu svjesni. Španjolci su unijeli ukus u začine, jer su Mavri cijelo ovo vrijeme bili u Španjolskoj, pa je arapski utjecaj značio da su ih kao dio trgovine začinima mnogo više zanimali kardamom, na primjer, i svi začini, nego francuski. Tako je došao okus začina, ali to je bio prekrivač ovog francuskog stava o hrani, pa je usvojen i apsorbiran. Španci su takođe imali ukus za pirinač, pa su doneli ideju o pirinču i drugim stvarima. Donijeli su natkrivena tržišta i kontrolu hrane, te počeli licencirati konobe i barove na način koji je obavljen na aukciji, i tako su dobili novac za vođenje grada. Budući da to nisu bili porezi poput poreza na dohodak, već porez na piće, oni su ohrabrivali sve da piju, jer što ste više pili, to bi imali više poreza.

Chowhound: To je zanimljiva ideja. I tako je kultura pijenja (i prehrane koja ide uz piće) zapravo ugrađena u koncept stvaranja i održavanja grada koji bi napredovao, ekonomski.

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LW: Ova sljedeća tačka nema tačan datum, ali tokom 18. stoljeća porobljeni Afrikanci su dovedeni u NOLA -u. Ljudi govore o Francuzima - stavovi su bili francuski, ali je kuhanje bilo afričko.

Chowhound: Možete li opisati koje su specifične tehnike kuhanja bile afričke?

LW: Prženje je nešto vrlo afričko, nije da niko drugi ne prži, već prženje kao osnovna tehnika brzog kuvanja - znate da je mnogo brže pržiti piletinu nego je ispeći, i sve to. Također, Afrikanci su imali tehnologiju uzgoja riže i radili su na poljima trske jer smo područje za proizvodnju šećera. Francuzi koji su ovdje dovedeni uglavnom su odvođeni iz zatvora - uglavnom se radilo o sitnom kriminalu, pa bi bilo džeparoša i prostitutki, a možda i ljudi iz zatvora dužnika. Često ti ljudi nisu imali vještinu, pa nisu mogli doći ovamo u ovu divljinu i na farmu, jer nisu znali kako! Tako su tu tehnologiju ovamo donijeli Afrikanci, a mnoge namirnice koje su se ovdje uzgajale uzgajane su samo zato što su Afrikanci to znali raditi. Beli ljudi koji su bili ovde nisu poznavali tehnologiju - oni su tokom života zavisili od robova.

Chowhound: Do sada ste nam govorili o domaćoj kuhinji, francuskom uticaju i važnosti španskih doseljenika i afričkih robova.

LW: Zatim, dvije stvari su se događale otprilike u isto vrijeme. Došlo je do pobune na Haitiju, koja je donijela veliki priliv plantažera i robova zajedno s kuhanjem Kariba, a otprilike u isto vrijeme bila je i kupovina Louisiane, koja je NOLA -u (i cijelu Luizijanu) učinila američkom, što je dovelo sve ove Amerikance koji su došli iz drugih mjesta koja su već postojala i koja su također unijela drugačiji ukus u to područje.

Chowhound: Kupovina u Louisiani bila je 1803. godine, pa je za manje od sto godina NOLA iskusila učinke toliko mnogo kultura.

LW: Dakle - ovo također nije događaj, već nešto što je važno. A to je da smo luka. Od početka, kada su Europljani počeli uzgajati kavu prvo na Karibima, zatim u Srednjoj Americi, a kasnije čak i u Južnoj Americi, sva ta kava je došla u luku NOLA. A sve vrste stvari iz ostatka svijeta dolazile su kroz luku NOLA. Tropsko voće dolazilo je od najranijeg doba, jer kad ste već bili tamo i uzgajali kavu, mogli biste unijeti i ananas i banane i sve takve stvari.

Zatim je bio građanski rat. Proglašenje emancipacije nakon rata dalo je slobodu porobljenim Afrikancima, što je uzrokovalo ogroman nedostatak radne snage i zbog toga su ljudi iz Filipina, Kine i Sicilije dovedeni i unijeli sve te nove utjecaje na hranu. A onda je otprilike od 1885. do oko 1915. godine - zbog onoga što se događalo u Italiji, a posebno na Siciliji - došlo do desetina hiljada Sicilijanaca koji su došli u NOLA -u, uglavnom s nekim rođakom ili nekim kontaktom koji je već bio u NOLA -i. Preuzeli su francusku četvrt koja je bila poznata kao Mali Palermo. Kažu da je u to vrijeme bio drugi nakon Palerma po govoru o sicilijanskom dijalektu. Bio je to veliki priliv ljudi i to je naravno promijenilo hranu NOLA -e.

Nakon toga, 1970 -ih godina nakon pada Sajgona, velika količina ljudi iz Vijetnama došla je u NOLA -u, a mi imamo ogromno vijetnamsko naselje.

Rekao bih da je posljednja stvar koja je zaista bila značajna za našu hranu bio uragan Katrina 2005.

Chowhound: Kako je to uticalo na kuhinju? Neko vrijeme tada se sjećam da ljudi nisu vjerovali da će kuhinja opstati.

LW: Mislim da je to izazvalo obnavljanje interesa za našu hranu i našu lokalnu kuhinju, jer je postojala dijaspora, jer niste mogli biti u gradu jer je bio pod vodom, pa su ljudi bili rašireni posvuda pa su bili u Memfisu, ili u Seattleu, ili Minneapolisu, ili gdje god imali rodbinu i naravno nisu mogli pojesti hranu koju su tražili - niste mogli otići u trgovinu i kupiti bocu fil éa za svoj gumbo - ljudi nisu mogli Nisu našli kavu i radič, a oni su se vratili osjećajući da ovo ne možemo izgubiti! Ne možemo se vratiti kao homogeno mjesto koje je dio Amerike i samo jesti smrznutu pizzu i takve stvari. To je dio toga - neka vrsta svijesti o hrani - a bilo je i mnogo Meksikanaca koji su došli u grad kako bi pomogli obnovu, pa ćete završiti s kamionima taco, tamales i prženim pasuljem, te svim vrstama zaista dobre hrane postalo dostupno, a zatim su postali tacos od kamenica, i sve takve stvari, jer je to bilo ovdje. Ubrzo nakon prvog vala ljudi iz Meksika, ljudi iz drugih zemalja Centralne Amerike dolazili su raditi na obnovi grada. Dakle, imali ste neku vrstu latinskog utjecaja latinskih utjecaja na hranu. A to je bilo tek 2005.

Chowhound: NOLA -ina kuhinja ima toliko toga. Je li to moguće sažeti u nekoliko riječi?

LW: U NOLA -i vi dolazite ovdje kao etnička grupa i mi vas samo usisavamo i kreiziramo vašu hranu, pa ona mijenja vašu hranu, kao i našu hranu, tako da je to potpuno drugačiji fenomen.

Da biste saznali više o hrani New Orleansa, posjetite SoFab u New Orleansu ili pročitajte “New Orleans - Biography of Food” autorice Elizabeth W. Williams.


Krvavo San Antonio podrijetlo Chili Con Carnea

Originalna Tex-Mex spojnica datira dalje nego što većina historičara zna.

Koliko zaista znamo o istoriji chili con carne -a? Nekada su ga Anglo-ovci smatrali strašno egzotičnim, čili je od tada osvojio priznanje kao jelo koje je dovelo do nastanka Tex-Mex kuhinje. Ovdje kod kuće, sada se tako temeljito asimilirao da je četrdeset godina vladao kao službeno državno jelo Teksasa, što je naljutilo one koji misle da sjedi na prijestolju s pravom zauzetim roštiljem.

Čini se da je postanak čilija danas gotovo nemoguće pratiti. W.C Jameson's Čili s jugozapada: Fixin, okusi i folklor nudi jedanaest konkurentnih teorija, u rasponu od proto-psihodelične, hiperkatoličke, španjolske/meksičke indijske priče o teleportiranju, dijeljenju recepata Plave časne sestre do druge koja pripisuje iskapanje zlata vezane za Kaliforniju drugima koji proklamiraju napore osuđenika i kauboja iz Teksasa .

No, teksaški povjesničar hrane Robb Walsh priklonio se teoriji da je recept potekao od populacije Kanarskih otoka San Antonija. Kao bedem protiv moguće francuske ekspanzije u Teksasu, Isleños su, kako su bili poznati, ohrabreni da se presele u San Antonio uz obećanje da će postati hidalgos, doslovno „sinovi nečega“ - u osnovi, manji španjolski plemići. Godine 1731. šesnaest kanarskih porodica (ukupno 56 ljudi) nastanilo se u novom gradu, pridruživši se miješanoj populaciji svećenstva, vojnika i indijskih misija. Gotovo odmah, Kanari su postali gradska poslovna i politička elita, a također su nam, prema Walshu, dali čili.

On vjeruje da spora mješavina mesa, bijelog luka, čile paprike, divljeg luka i kima odaje marokanski (konkretno berberski) utjecaj koji prevladava na Kanarskim otocima. Iako je kim bio u ruci u ormarima za začine u San Antoniju prije njihovog dolaska, Walsh je napisao da su kanarski kuhari bili vrlo teški sa suhim kimom- comino molido - potpisan sastojak onoga što danas poznajemo kao čili.

Istina, domorodački Amerikanci stoljećima su kuhali sjevernoameričku divljač (divljač, puretina, antilopa) s autohtonim začinima. 1730 -ih, lutajući švicarski jezuit, Philipp Segesser, naišao je na jelo u južnoj Arizoni za koje je rekao da se sastoji od pečene drobljene čile paprike pržene u cvrstoj masti sa komadima mesa. 1568 -ih Istinska istorija osvajanja Nove Španije, konkvistador Bernal Diaz del Castillo napisao je da su nesretni Španjolci koji su pali u ruke Asteka bili iskasapljeni i dinstani u loncima zajedno s paradajzom i čile paprikom.

"Međutim, ovo nije bilo ništa poput čili con carnea kakvog danas poznajemo", primijetio je Charles Ramsdell u svojoj knjizi iz 1959. San Antonio: Povijesni i slikovni vodič , očigledno ravnog lica. Ne, "chili con-quistadores" (kako bi se skovao izraz) je, prema njegovom mišljenju, preciznije opisano kao "verzija klasičnog krtica poblano, koju su za svečane prilike izmislili Asteci i njihovi današnji potomci, koji ga prave sa piletina ili ćuretina. ”

Dakle, ako to nije bilo staro astečko jelo, kada je čili prvi put postao popularan u Teksasu? Kada je Tex upoznao Mexa? Prema najšire prihvaćenoj priči, čili je-zajedno s tamales, enchiladama i nekoliko drugih Tex-Mex namirnica-svoj prvi prodor u anglo nepce probio unutar desetljeća ili dva nakon građanskog rata, zahvaljujući čuvenom San Antoniju "Chili" Kraljice. ”

Chili con carne su u Ameriku uvele "Chili Queens", žene koje su posluživale hranu na vojnoj plaži San Antonija još 1860 -ih. Čili štandovi su takođe bili uobičajeni u Galvestonu i Houstonu, to su bili taco kamioni 1800 -ih. Tamales sa čilijem bio je najčešći red - grah se često dodavao. Radnici su računali na prodavce čilija za brzi obrok. Avanturisti su ih voljeli. A viši razredi pokušali su ih otjerati ili zatvoriti.

Ali šta ako je Walshova procjena zapravo previše konzervativna - za pet decenija? Našli smo dokaze koji ukazuju upravo na to.

Jameson, povjesničar hrane, tvrdi da čili nije bio javno dostupan u San Antoniju sve do 1880 -ih, temeljeći taj datum na činjenici da je "niz pismenih i pažljivih istraživača, vojnika i drugih" prošao kroz grad između 1767. i 1882. godine, i niko od njih nije spomenuo čili ili chili con carne po imenu.

To odražava hronologiju istoričara San Antonia Ramsdella. Napominje da je južnjački pjesnik i muzičar Sidney Lanier došao u grad 1872. godine i nije spomenuo prisustvo čilija ili štandova sa čilijem na trgovima. Nije ni Edward King, autor 1874 Scribner's časopisna putopisna priča „Nabori Teksasa“.

Međutim, King je ipak rekao da su svi dobrodošli da popiju začinjena jela koja sumnjivo zvuče kao čili con carne u privatnim kućama u Lareditu, sirotinjskoj četvrti u blizini Military Plaze. "[Jedan] mora samo ući i zahtijevati večeru da se odmah posluži, jer je Meksikanac naučio uzeti u obzir američku znatiželju o svom kuhanju", napisao je.

King je opisao prizor unutar ovih kućnih restorana:

Ulazeći u jednu od ovih rupa, pronaći ćete dugačak, hrapav stol s drvenim klupama oko njega, jedan svijećnjak koji mutno šalje svjetlo u tamne udubljenja neobrađenih [sic] krov, pod od tvrde zemlje, na kojem se ptice zauzimaju predajući se da prespavaju nekoliko jela postavljenih na stolu i čaše i šoljice za kafu pored njih. Debele, smeđe meksičke materfamilije stavit će pred vas razne slane spojeve, plivajući u vatrenoj paprici koja grize [sic] poput zmije i tortilje, vrući kolač za pušenje, tanak poput brijanja i otprilike isto za jelo, zamjena je za kruh.

Sta tacno, bili ta razna slana jedinjenja, plivaju u otrovnim paprikama, ako ne i u čiliju?

King je dalje primijetio da su avanturistički članovi anglo elite San Antonija već bili poklonici ovih ad hoc večera, uključujući "Don Juana" Twohig, bankara i trgovca porijeklom Irac. Čini se da su štandovi i saloni u San Antoniju (termin može potjecati od ovih ranih kućnih restorana) bili veliki izravnači društva San Antonija, gdje su se razbojniji članovi aristokracije miješali s podzemnim svijetom. (Kasnijih godina neki od poznatijih restorana sa čilijem bili su smješteni na rubu četvrti crvenih svjetala u San Antoniju, ali su ih i dalje patronirali svi slojevi društva.)

Ramsdell navodi još jedan primjer svjetionika koji je posjetio San Antonio i ne spominje čili po imenu kasnih 1870 -ih. Harriet Prescott Spofford, za Harper's magazin, koji je 1877. godine zabilježio da ste, dok su peciva, čokolada i peciva bili dostupni na Military Plaza -u, morali ste otići do one vrste "hovea" koje je King opisao kako biste pronašli "meksičko osvježenje" koje bi vas danima činilo "neugodnim". (Ako je uzorkovala dio ove cijene, nije pisala o tome.)

Chili con carne stolovi u San Antoniju, oko 1880. San Antonio View Co.

A onda, 1882., prema Ramsdellu i Jamesonu, imamo jackpot: prvo spominjanje chili con carne u štampi. Došao je u misterioznom (i sada očigledno izgubljenom) pamfletu pod nazivom Gouldov vodič kroz San Antonio koji "spominje chili con carne i njegovu dostupnost na različitim lokacijama po trgu", piše Jameson.

"Oni koji uživaju u meksičkom luksuzu tamalesa, čilija i enchilada, mogu ih pronaći ovdje skuhane na otvorenom u stražnjem dijelu stolova i poslužene od linijskih potomaka starih Asteka", citira Jameson Gulda .

Ramsdell tvrdi da se američko nepce za meksičku hranu razvilo 1870 -ih godina i da se izvorno dijelilo samo po kućama, a ne i na trgovima. Do karte na otvorenom došlo je tek 1880-ih, piše on, predlažući da se prvi meksički restoran u gradu otvori tek 1889. godine, s jednom gospođom Garzom kao vlasnicom. On tvrdi da je vladavina kraljica Chili Queena nad trgovima započela tek 1890 -ih.

Koja su, dakle, sva ta mjesta koja je King opisao 1870 -ih? Kuhinje za juhe, besplatne obroke gladnim Amerikancima? Jameson napominje da je 1862. neuredni element gradskog konfederacijskog garnizona neredovao na Military Plaza i uništio neke štandove s hranom. Tamalesi su spominjani imenom u izvještaju o šteti, kao i "variva". Još jednom, šta su to bila variva ako ne čili?

Ni Ramsdell ni Jameson nisu imali pristup današnjem internetu - konkretno, novinskim bazama podataka koje je moguće pretraživati ​​po ključnoj riječi i datumu. Zahvaljujući jednoj takvoj bazi podataka, Newspapers.com samo za pretplate, otkrili smo da se spominje chili con carne koji je prethodio Gould-u punih pet godina, zahvaljujući anonimnom izvjestitelju koji je posjetio San Antonio iz Fort Scotta u Kansasu.

Kad smo već kod vrućih stvari, u San Antoniju imaju jelo koje se zove chili con carne. Meksičkog je porijekla, a sastoji se od govedine, graška, umaka i crvene paprike. Užasno zavodljivo izgleda i daje momku ideju da ima meku stvar na hašu. Uvijek imaju dovoljno za obilazak, jer nijedan stranac, bez obzira koliko sjajna budala bila, nikad ne traži drugo jelo. Skoro uvijek traži veliku cisternu punu vode, a vodu u njega ne možete staviti dovoljno brzo crijevom parne mašine.

Opet, pet godina prije nego što je Gould uspio spomenuti chili con carne u San Antoniju, imamo čovjeka iz Yankeelanda koji kleveće lokalnu hranu. Ali chili con carne je već bio na dobrom putu da osvoji državu. Prema podacima iz 1878 Brenham Weekly Banner članak, muškarac u Denisonu, blizu Crvene rijeke, „o pokretanju meksičkog restorana. Čile con carne, tomales [sic] i druga ‘topla’ jela poslužit će se po narudžbi. ”

Do 1881. sličan jelovnik pojavio se u Abileni, prema Dallas Daily Herald : „Novi hotel Abilene […] je najudobnije mjesto za zaustavljanje bubnjara [prodavača] i stranaca. Dobre sobe, fini stolni meksički tamales, čile-con-carne, proljetni pilići i specijaliteti od ribe. ”

U međuvremenu, još u San Antoniju, 1882. godine, objavljeno je da se „kapetan Bill Tobin dogovara da pošalje teret automobila [do tada je stigla željeznica] čile con carne u ovaj grad. Zvuči kao donošenje ugljena u Newcastle, ali to je samo stvar za piknike [sic] i za putnike, a lako se priprema za porodičnu upotrebu. ”

(O tome ćemo kasnije govoriti više, ali kapetan Tobin se bavio konzerviranjem čilija mnogo prije nego što je ta inovacija općenito zaslužna za nastanak.)

Spominjanje reportera iz Kansana chili con carne prvo je u bazi Newspapers.com, ali jelo je moralo postojati mnogo prije 1877. godine, tek kada je postalo poznato pod današnjim imenom u štampi. Štaviše, postoji jednostavna činjenica da su je čak i usputni Jayhawkeri otkrili 1877. godine, dok joj nije bilo potrebno upoznavanje s čitateljima u Brenhamu niti restoranima u Denisonu do 1878. godine, a do trenutka kada ju je misteriozni Gould spomenuo 1882. San Antonianci su već smatrali njen uvoz kao nešto slično izvozu čaja u Kinu ili piva u Češku.

Pa zašto se toliko učenjaka nastanilo na datum 1880 -ih?

Možda je to činjenica da su međudržavne željeznice u to vrijeme prvi put povezivale San Antonio sa vanjskim svijetom. Odjednom su grad opsjedale hrpe stranaca, diveći se neobičnoj, egzotičnoj hrani koju su mještani jeli od rođenja. Prije toga, evanđelje od čilija bilo je prisiljeno putovati stazama kočija i stazama za stoku, a oba su povezivala San Antonio s mjestima poput Abilene i Denisona.

Drugi faktor može biti jezik. San Antonio u devetnaestom stoljeću bio je trojezični grad: engleski, španjolski i njemački govorili su približno jednaki udjeli stanovništva, a svaki je mogao imati različit naziv za začinjeno mesno gulaš, čak i ako su se potrudili nazvati ga drugačije nego večera ili večera. Čak je i na engleskom poznato da se pravopis razlikuje od „čile“, do „čili“, do „čili“, pa čak i „hladan“. Ili još egzotičniji pokušaji: opisujući scenu čilija na otvorenom u San Antoniju 1882., reporter iz Alabame Greenville Advocate prevedeno kao "chille cancarne". (I takođe je izvijestio da sadrži grah. Ay caramba !)

Štaviše, neki od najranijih Anglo izvještaja koje smo pronašli opisuju ga kao neku vrstu „haša“, „smjese“ ili „gulaša“. Prvi spomen jela nalik čiliju na engleskom jeziku zabilježen u San Antoniju 1828. godine od teksaškog koloniste po imenu JC Clopper, pionira današnjeg područja Houstona, koji je grad posjetio sedam godina nakon nezavisnosti Meksika i osam godina prije Teksasa Revolution. “Kad oni [siromašne porodice San Antonija] moraju platiti svoje meso na tržištu, napravi se vrlo malo da bi porodici bilo dovoljno, obično se isječe na neku vrstu hašiša sa gotovo onoliko paprike koliko ima komada mesa - sve se ovo zajedno kuha. "

In Kuvarica Tex-Mex, Walsh citira poreznog povjerenika iz San Antonija po imenu Frank Bushick, koji je 1927. tvrdio da su Chili Queens bježale „tamo nazad kad je španjolska vojska kampirala na Military Plaza [najkasnije 1821.]” - što je kontradiktorno Walshov vlastiti datum „još 1860 -ih“.

Možda su čili davali druga imena, ili nazive koje teksaške uši ili nisu mogle razumjeti ili se nisu obavezale na štampanje. Nailazite na slične probleme koji prate istoriju grkljana u Teksasu: izgleda da su ih ljudi nazivali "čavkama" do otprilike 1900. godine (čavke su evropska ptica druge vrste čije je ime ovdje izbačeno iz upotrebe.)

Ili razmislite o početku. Većina nas na njih gleda kao na poslasticu koja datira još od mjesečine i magnolije, dana apsorba natopljenih kreolskim New Orleansom, a vrlo bi i mogli. Samo ih nitko nije nazivao tim otmjenim francuskim imenom do otprilike 1960. godine, iako je Cafe du Monde, najpoznatiji svjetski dobavljač ogrtača, bio otvoren od 1862.

Da, gledajući unatrag kroz novinske arhive, možete pronaći mnogo, mnogo referenci na bejgnete, ali sve se one odnose na peciva koja su sasvim različita od uštipanih krofni, bez rupa, poznatih u Francuskoj četvrti. Domoroci iz New Orleansa samo su ih nazvali "francuskim krafnama" tokom stoljeća između otvaranja kafića i ranih 1960-ih, kada su dobili to otmjeno, lažno-folklorno ime. Čak ih se i danas pakovanje beignet mješavine Cafe du Monde naziva i "francuskim krofnama". (Kao i moj tast, rodom iz Louisiane čiji su preci po majci nekad snabdjevali brašno Cafe du Monde.)

Čini se da javna prodaja čili con carnea na otvorenom u San Antoniju seže daleko dalje nego što se općenito vjeruje.

Kopajući po arhivama novina naišao sam na 1884 San Antonio Light članak u kojem se tvrdi da je američka izloženost čiliju i tamalesu, te pojava Chili Queens, nastala davne 1813. - usred užasnog krvoprolića i ekstravagantne romantike.

Nekoliko američkih gradova, a zasigurno nijedan u Teksasu, nije poznavao toliko sukoba, užasnog terora i haosa kao San Antonio. Istorija časnog starog grada bolje odgovara Balkanu, revoluciji razorenoj Latinskoj Americi (koja je nekad bila), ili Igra prijestolja .

Otkako su prvi Španjolci krajem sedamnaestog stoljeća ušli u indijsko selo Payaya, poznato pod imenom Yanaguana, San Antonio je mijenjao vlasnika više od desetak puta, povremeno propraćen divljačkim, krvavim odmazdama tokom promjena režima. Svaki student istorije Teksasa zna za Ben Milama i osvajanje San Antonija 1835. godine od strane Teksijanaca, nakon dana borbe od kuće do kuće i nemilosrdnog pokolja garnizona Alamo nekoliko mjeseci kasnije. Nakon bitke kod San Jacinta, meksički orao ustupio je mjesto Usamljenoj zvijezdi, ali to nije bio zadnji put da je "El Tri" preletio grad: 1842. meksičke udarne snage zauzele su grad dva puta. Zajedno sa ostalim južnim državama, San Antonio je takođe pola decenije nosio Dixie transparent.

Većina toga, osim za dva meksička napada nakon San Jacinta, dobro je poznata. Mnogo se manje ljudi sjeća nevolja iz 1811. i 1813. godine, iako je posljednji od tih sukoba predstavljao najkrvaviju bitku ikada vođenu na tlu Teksasa, a prema tradiciji San Antonija proizveo je prvu čili kraljicu.

Da nije bilo činjenice da je (djelomično) američka strana izgubila na sramotan način, snimali bi se filmovi o ekspediciji Gutierrez-Magee od 1812. do 1813. godine.

Ohrabreni skoro uspjehom pobune Casas 1811. u San Antoniju, i uz prikrivenu podršku iz Washingtona, španjolski teksaški revolucionari otputovali su u Louisianu i uvrstili anglo i Louisiane kreolske vojnike u zajedničku „Republikansku armiju Sjevera“ zauvijek odvojiti Texas od Madrida. (Španjolski i anglo kontingent imali su različite planove - prvi su željeli Teksas kao dio slobodnog Meksika, dok su drugi preferirali pripajanje Sjedinjenim Državama, ili možda nezavisnu republiku kako je zamislio Aaron Burr. Čini se da su se obje strane složile da to riješe na stranu dok nisu zauzeli Teksas.)

Jednom u Teksasu ova je vojska regrutirala pomoćnika indijanske konjice iz nekoliko plemena i brzo je uspjela u istočnom i južnom Teksasu, zauzevši Nacogdoches i Goliad s malim problemima. Velike rojalističke snage opsjedale su ih kod Golijada, ali su pobunjenici izdržali, izbili, zatim izvršili kontranapad na putu za San Antonio, razbivši Španjolce - i zarobili vođe rojalista Manuela Maria del Salcedoa, guvernera Teksasa i Simona de Herrere, guvernera Nuevo Leona. Sledeći je trebao pasti bespomoćni San Antonio, a 1. aprila 1813. godine multikulturni pobunjenici zvanično su preuzeli kontrolu nad glavnim gradom provincije.

Two days later, according to the Light , and corroborated by the Federal Writers Project’s San Antonio: An Authoritative Guide to the City and its Environs (compiled in 1938), the aftermath of an atrocity would eventually give rise to the world’s very first Tex-Mex restaurant.

Prema Light ’s source—“an aged Mexican lady, who all her life has been in this city, and who is familiar with its traditions and legends”—a rebel officer named Antonio Delgado, acting with the tacit permission of rebel leader José Bernardo Maximiliano Gutiérrez de Lara , marched governors Salcedo and Herrera and a dozen or so other Royalist prisoners toward the coast and what the prisoners believed would be captivity.

They were sadly mistaken. In an incident foreshadowing the Goliad Massacre of 1836, instead they were delivered to a live oak motte on the outskirts of town, where they were taunted and killed—Delgado’s men sharpened their machetes on the soles of their own filthy boots before slitting their throats, according to the 1938 Guide . Delgado had his reasons: according to the Guide , the Royalists had beheaded his father in the failed revolt two years before and left it to rot on a pike in the middle of town for months.

Even if Delgado had a somewhat understandable motive, some of the American mercenaries, including the Anglo contingent’s commander, Samuel Kemper , quit the army and returned to the States in disgust over this grisly treachery committed in their names.

The brutal reprisal, combined with the fact that much of the remaining army was composed of gringos, turned the populace of San Antonio against its remaining occupiers. The sullen locals refused to feed the invaders, hoping they could starve them out of town and bring about a restoration of Spanish rule.

According to both the Light i Guide , one rebel who remained in San Antonio was a wealthy young Louisiana Creole named Louis St. Clare. During the occupation, he fell in love with sixteen-year-old Jesusita de la Torre (spelled “Jesuita” in the Guide ), who according to the Light , had lost her father, Dr. José de la Torre, in Delgado’s massacre. (The Guide has it that he was dead, but does not give the cause.) The St. Clare–de la Torre romance would eventually leave the Chili Queen tradition as its legacy.

Knowing full well that he and his ilk were loathed by the San Antonians—especially by the de la Torre family and others who had lost sons, husbands, and brothers in Delgado’s purge—St. Clare nevertheless began paying dogged court to Jesusita, attempting to win over her mother in their “miserable jacal [hut] on the outskirts of town.” (Poverty to which they had been reduced after Dr. de la Torre’s demise.)

Prema Light reporter, St. Clare’s humble demeanor won over Señora de la Torre, at least to the point where she allowed him to come in and tell her how sorry he was over the death of Dr. de la Torre and how horrified he had been over Delgado’s treachery. Kao Light told it, she intuited that he was a good man, one worthy of her daughter’s hand. In short, she “found the Frenchman not so terrible.”

Meanwhile, both the de la Torres and the rebel army were starving, thanks to the resentment of the locals.

Kao Guide put it:

Because of this alliance with the rebels, the Royalist families of San Antonio ostracized the de la Torres, removing the support they had previously provided, and soon the mother and daughter faced starvation. St. Clare suggested that it might be profitable if they opened a restaurant, as the Anglo-Americans were notoriously poor cooks and not a Spaniard of Bexar would provide their food. So the Señora de la Torre attempted to rent a house for this purpose, but was everywhere refused. Thereupon the resourceful St. Clare made a crude table and benches, placed them outdoors upon the plaza, and here the de la Torres served fiery Spanish foods and the frontiersmen brushed up on their table manners. Thus, according to tradition, was born the portable outdoor Mexican restaurant later known as the chile [sic] stand for after St. Clare had married Jesuita and taken her away, other women remembered the success of the eating place under the stars and continued the custom in San Antonio—where, until very recently, chile stands were a feature of the city’s Mexican quarter.

Or, as the Light put it in 1884, this “ style of eating became very popular, and to this day, the open-air restaurants, or tamale stands, have been kept up, through rain and shine, under the many succeeding governments that have held sway in this historic city.”

(The legend of Jesusita didn’t disappear entirely renowned Latina author Josefina Niggli characterized Jesusita as San Antonio’s first Chili Queen in her 1965 play Lightning from the East .)

The Republican Army of the North’s occupation of San Antonio was short-lived. In August, a Royalist force led by General José Joaquín de Arredondo (with a young, admiring lieutenant by the name of Antonio López de Santa Anna in tow) routed the army at the four-hour Battle of Medina and massacred the wounded and prisoners—of the 1,400 rebels, only one hundred survived. It remains the bloodiest battle in Texas history, and second only to the 1900 Hurricane as the state’s deadliest day. (How St. Clare and de la Torre escaped this carnage is lost to history. It is known that of the hundred survivors, ninety were American, of whose number only twenty names are now known .)

In the aftermath, Arredondo launched a merciless scorched-earth campaign against Texas, imprisoning San Antonio’s women and children (and forcing them to grind a huge quota of corn into tortillas daily) and summarily executing men whose loyalty seemed suspect. The years 1813 through 1821 were the darkest in the Alamo City’s history, according to Ramsdell: droughts and pestilence and floods followed Arredondo’s purges, leaving the town “well-nigh deserted.”

Arredondo did not confine his crackdown to San Antonio, which brings another chili origin story into play: the lavandera teorija.

Lavanderas—literally, washerwomen—were camp followers of the various armies that marched through Texas in the nineteenth century: Spanish, Texan, Mexican, Confederate, and American. By day they would wash clothes, and by night they would turn their tubs to culinary purposes, stirring up vast pots of chile pepper—and wild marjoram—flavored venison or goat to provision the troops. (Recall how Bushick connection of the Chili Queens to the Spanish army, and also the Jesusita story.)

In 1882, only two years after some historians believe the dish was discovered by Anglos, Captain William G. Tobin of San Antonio, a veteran of the Texas Rangers and the Confederate army, the first commercial canner of chili con carne, and the man behind the “coals-to-Newcastle” importation of chili to San Antonio, successfully won a contract to supply the spicy chow to the U.S. Army. (There seems to be a persistent association in Texas history between chili con carne and warfare.)

Also intriguing: despite the fact that his chili was canned in Chicago, America’s meat-packing capital, Tobin thought it best to use goat meat rather than beef, suggesting that he had tasted such chili from the lavanderas while on the trail with either the Confederates or the Rangers. It could also be that goat was just that much cheaper. But Chicago was never known as “the goat butcher of the world .” At any rate, much more on Tobin, San Antonio’s forgotten Chili King, in another installment.

It’s easy to imagine that the lavanderas and the Chili Queens were one and the same. San Antonio has always been a garrison town—it remains one today, to some degree—and it’s easy to imagine the nineteenth-century Chili Queens packing up their pots and pans and hitting the road when the soldiers, the mainstay of their business in peacetime, marched out to war. Zašto ne bi?


Attractions and Sites Not to be Missed

Hands down, La Sagrada Familia Cathedral, which means “The Holy Family”, should be at the top of your list. Do not miss this incredible work of architecture which is expected to be completed in 2026. (Admission charge goes towards the completion and upkeep of the cathedral.)


Sažetak recepta

  • 8 slices bacon
  • 2 heads fresh broccoli, chopped
  • 1 ½ cups sharp Cheddar cheese, shredded
  • ½ large red onion, chopped
  • ¼ cup red wine vinegar
  • ⅛ cup white sugar
  • 2 teaspoons ground black pepper
  • 1 kašičica soli
  • ⅔ cup mayonnaise
  • 1 kašičica svežeg soka od limuna

Place bacon in a large, deep skillet. Cook over medium high heat until evenly brown. Drain, and crumble.

In a large bowl, combine broccoli, cheese, bacon and onion.

Prepare the dressing in a small bowl by whisking together the red wine vinegar, sugar, pepper, salt, mayonnaise and lemon juice. Combine dressing with salad. Cover, and refrigerate until ready to serve.


Mexican Samurai

Another seductive shooter, the Mexican Samurai is of the gentler sort. In fact, you might want to slow down and sip this one.

To create this shooter, you will want to prepare a fresh sour mix (don't worry, it's easy). Come party time, simply shake that with your favorite tequila and the electric green fruit liqueur called Ty Ku. Strain it, shoot it, and savor the sweetness!


66 Mexican Recipes You'll Be Making On Repeat

Learn how to make all your restaurant favorites at home.

Whether it's Taco Tuesday, Cinco de Mayo, or a Friday night, these recipes are fun enough for a party, and easy enough to make a delish weeknight dinner. Once you've tried all of these, we've got 50 amazing tacos for you to work your way through.

Breakfast doesn't get much better than this.

The avocado cream is a non-negotiable.

Pineapple and pork is always a winning combo.

Highly recommend dunking in cheesecake dip.

This baby is a total crowd-pleaser.

Fresh avo and corn slaw make these sooo tasty.

Cheese shells are all the rage.

We crave these at least once a week.

Ummm, this is basically our two favorite foods (tacos and pizza) combined!


10 Most Famous American Fast Foods

­It's a fast paced world we live in. Thanks to the Internet, information is available in an instant, stocks can be traded in real time with the click of a button and you can buy just about anything you can think of on the spot (with overnight delivery). Digital cameras render crystal clear photographs ready for viewing in a single second. Cell phones put us in touch with anyone we want nearly instantly. Americans simply don't like to wait. The same can be said for how we eat. Since the first fast-food chain, White Castle, opened in 1921, Americans have grown accustomed to getting the food we want in short order.

Fast-food has since spread, with more than 30,000 McDonald's restaurants alone located around the world. McDonald's is the undisputed king of fast-food, serving 52 million people a day in more than 100 countries [source: McDonald's]. That's a lot of Chicken McNuggets. In an article in Rolling Stone magazine in 1998, a survey of American schoolchildren revealed that 96 percent of them could identify Ronald McDonald -- only Santa Claus ranked higher at the time. The same article claimed that McDonald's famous "Golden Arches" had become more widely recognized around the world than the Christian cross [source: Schlosser].

Of course, all this fast-food has led to a problem -- obesity. In 2004, the National Center for Health published a study on obesity in the United States. Between 1962 and 2000, the percentage of obese Americans swelled from 13 percent to 31 percent [source: CDC]. It's probably no coincidence that fast-food restaurants saw tremendous growth as well. The National Bureau for Economic Research published a report in November 2008 that stated that childhood obesity could be cut by as much as 18 percent if fast-food ads were banned [source: Reuter's].

Obese or not, people love their fast-food favorites. That's why we're going to take a look at 10 of the biggest selling fast-food menu items in America on the following pages.

It may feel like a newer franchise, but Subway actually started out in 1965 as a means f­or co-founder Fred DeLuca to help pay for college. Since then, DeLuca has been able to pay for a lot more than tuition fees. In 2006, he was named by Forbes Magazine as number 242 on the list of richest Americans, with a net worth of about $1.5 billion [source: Forbes]. In 2008, Subway celebrated being in business for 43 years. The sandwich chain has grown from a single shop to more than 30,000 franchises in 88 countries around the world [source: Subway].

Subway stands alone as the largest sandwich chain in the world and operates more stores in the United States, Canada and Australia than McDonald's does. How does this kind of growth translate into sub sales? In the United States alone, Subway sells almost 2,800 sandwiches and salads every minute. The company's Web site also touts another interesting fact -- if all the sandwiches made by every Subway store in a year were placed end-to-end, they would wrap around the Earth at least six times. No word on how many millions of gallons of mayonnaise that means.

9: Chick-fil-A Chicken Sandwich

­Chick-fil-A founder Truett Cathy is probably best known for two things: He's credited with inventing the boneless chicken sandwich and his restaurant chain is closed on Sunday. It's unthinkable today to imagine a life without the chicken sandwich, but in 1946 it was all about the hamburger. It's also hard to believe that a corporation that has annual sales of more than $2 billion each year would close down one day a week. Cathy's dedication to his Christian faith has kept the Sabbath wide open for his employees since day one.

Originally a shopping-mall-only restaurant, Chick-fil-A expanded to freestanding stores in 1986 and now operates more than 1,300 franchises in 37 states. The menu has branched out somewhat over the years, adding salads, nuggets and wraps, but the restaurant's bread and butter (literally) is still the original chicken sandwich. Its beauty is in its simplicity -- a pressure-fried chicken breast with pickle slices on top, served between a buttered bun [source: Chick-fil-A].

­Pizza may be Italian in origin, but it has become a truly American food because of how popular it is in the United States. In 2007, the total pizza sales in America nearly hit $37 billion and as of July 2008, there were more than 75,000 pizza stores sliding pies into the oven. Independently operated pizzerias make up a slim majority of these totals. The chain Pizza Hut stands as the largest and most successful franchise with almost 14 percent of the total chain sales at a total of $5.1 billion in 2007 [source: Pmq.com].

­The original Pizza Hut was opened on campus at Wichita State University in 1958, but didn't become a franchise until the following year. The company now operates almost 15,000 units in the United States alone. The chain is known for its all-you-can-eat pizza and salad buffet and for putting some unusual spins on the classic pie -- crusts stuffed with cheese that you're supposed to eat backwards, "The Insider," which is kind of like a pizza sandwich and another concoction called "The P'Zone." Pizza Hut is the number one seller of pizzas in the United States.

­Fried chicken is known as a staple food of the Southern United States, but its appeal is clear all over the world. In 1930, in the throws of the Great Depression, a man named Harland Sanders opened a fried chicken restaurant in the front room of a gas station in Corbin, Ky. The Sanders' Court & Café would grow and expand as the Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) franchise and become the most popular chicken restaurant on Earth.

­As of 2008, KFC operates more than 11,000 restaurants in more than 80 countries. Founder Colonel (honorary) Harlan Sanders first began selling his famous "Original Recipe" chicken with its 11 herbs and spices in 1940, and the iconic bucket came along about 17 years later. In 1969, KFC became a publicly traded company, and in 2006, the company sold more than one billion chicken dinners [source: KFC]. Even though KFC was doing well on its own, it joined YUM! Brands, Inc., in 2002 to become part of the largest restaurant group in the world. KFC's partner chains include Pizza Hut and Taco Bell, both listed on this top 10.

If small, square hamburgers are your thing, then you're probably a fan of either Krystal or White Castle. Both fast-food chains are known for the small hamburgers that customers gobble down several at a time. Since White Castle is the original, we'll give them the nod in this case. Walter Anderson and Billy Ingram partnered up in 1921 to create the first fast-food hamburger restaurant, selling their signature "Slyders" for five cents each. The restaurant's name matches the look -- each White Castle restaurant looks like a white castle.

In 1949, White Castle made a change that would end up being its legacy. It made five holes in each square patty and cooked the meat on top of a bed of diced onions. The burger never makes contact with the griddle and is cooked by the steaming onion. The holes allow for a faster, more even cook. The buns are placed on top of the meat to soak up extra flavor as well. Add a slice of dill pickle and you have an American institution -- the Slyder.

Even though White Castle only has 382 stores as of 2009, it sells 500,000,000 Slyders a year and has served 16 billion since 1949. It was the first to reach one million burgers sold and then the first to reach one billion [source: White Castle].

­Not many fast-food restaurant founders have been as visible as Wendy's Dave Thomas was. In a bold marketing move, Thomas became the face of the franchise on TV commercials in 1989, and continued doing so until he passed away in 2002. The first Wendy's Old Fashioned Hamburgers restaurant was opened by Thomas and co-founder John Schuessler in 1969 in Columbus, Ohio. It was important for Dave from the beginning that Wendy's be a cut above its competitors in terms of food quality. If you look closely at the famous logo, you'll see the words "Quality is our Recipe" above the red-haired pigtails the company's mascot "Wendy" wears.

You won't find a heat lamp with a rack of burgers sitting beneath it at a Wendy's. Each "single" hamburger is made-to-order. The classic burger is a 4-ou­nce, square patty served on a bun with your choice of toppings -- lettuce, tomato, pickle, onion and whatever condiment you fancy. Wendy's ranks third on the burger chain list behind Burger King and McDonald's, with more than 6,500 locations worldwide. In 2006, Wendy's had total revenues of almost $2.5 billion and employed 57,000 people [source: Wendy's].

The chain is also famous for its chocolate version of the milkshake, the Frosty. It was one of the original five menu items and remains a top seller. Dave Thomas wanted to make a milkshake so thick you had to eat it with a spoon and he was pretty successful -- Wendy's sells about 300 million each year [source: Hentges].

4: Arby's Roast Beef Sandwich

­Each category of fast-food chain restaurant has its "best in show." There can be only one best selling sub sandwich, one best burger, one best taco. In the middle of the hamburger craze in 1964, Arby's found its niche in the land of roast beef. The Raffel brothers opened the first Arby's Roast Beef Restaurants in Boardman, Ohio. Beef was a big hit with the burger chains, so the Raffels decide that instead of grinding it up, they'd slow roast it and slice it thin. The name Arby's comes from spelling out the initials R.B. -- for Raffel brothers, not "roast beef."

Arby's operates more than 3,500 restaurants in the United States and Canada, and the chain's most popular sandwich is still the signature roast beef sandwich. The beef is sliced fresh for each sandwich and customers can top it themselves with the famous Arby's and Horsey sauces. In 2008, Arby's purchased Wendy's for $2.34 billion, forming the third largest fast-food company in the world.

­Just like Arby's cornered the roast beef market, Taco Bell has carved out a spot as the number one Mexican fast-food restaurant chain. If you've ever stopped and wondered just what the heck a "taco bell" is, you'll be glad to know that a man named Glen Bell started the franchise and named it after himself. He started the chain in 1962 in California at a time when Mexican food was pretty out of the ordinary in America. The first franchis­e opened in 1964 and now, the company boasts more than 5,800 restaurants in the United States, Canada, Guam, Aruba, Dominican Republic, Chile, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Puerto Rico, Ecuador, Asia, Europe and the Philippines [source: Taco Bell].

­The popular chain serves about 2 billion customers a year and perhaps not coincidentally, also sells roughly 2 billion of its signature tacos. The franchise plows through 3.8 billion tortillas, 62 million pounds of pinto beans, 106 million pounds of cheese and 295 million pounds of ground beef a year [source: Taco Bell]. It made revenues of $6.8 billion in 2005, part of that coming from the million burritos it sells each year. Add in quesadillas, nachos and some signature spins on Mexican classics, like double-decker tacos (a soft flour tortilla wrapped around a hard shell corn tortilla taco) and odd items like the "Crunchwrap Supreme" and you've got a gut pleasing late-night drive-thru destination.

­Burger King isn't quite the king -- that distinction resides with McDonald's. But BK has a solid grip on the number two spot, with 11,200 franchises. You can find Burger King franchises in the United States and 69 other countries around the world. Burger loving entrepreneurs James McLamore and David Edgerton started BK in Miami, Fla., in 1954. The Whopper became their signature burger in 1957. One thing that distinguishes Burger King from its competitors is the fact that the burgers are flame broiled instead of cooked on a griddle. The idea was to give the meat that home-grilled taste.

­The Whopper is a one-quarter pound beef patty between a sesame seed bun with mayonnaise, lettuce, tomato, pickles, ketchup and sliced onion. Of course, it is Burger King, so you can always "have it your way." This is the advertising slogan from 1974 that the chain is still most well-known for. The BK Web site claims that there are actually 221,184 possible ways you can have it your way. Even though it's a distant second place to McDonald's, total sales of all the Burger Kings are still massive BK restaurants in 2007 surpassed the $13 billion mark [source: Burger King].

­There can be only one. One top dog, one that stands head and shoulders above the rest. One that transcends the mundaneness of a mere fast-food chain to become something else altogether -- the s­ymbol of a country, the face of an industry: McDonald's. If you're American, the name itself conjures up an embarrassingly high number of familiar images and memories.

The McDonald brothers started the franchise as a hot dog stand in 1937 and changed things up in 1948 by making the switch to burgers and fries made using a speedy and efficient assembly line system. Things took a fortuitous turn when the McDonald brothers met a milkshake machine salesman named Ray Kroc. Kroc was impressed with the operation and asked to be included as a franchise agent, splitting profits with the brothers for growing the chain. Kroc opened the first franchise in 1955 in Des Plaines, Ill., and the rest is fast-food history. He bought the brothers out for $2.7 million in 1961, and the franchise has grown to operate more than 31,000 stores in over 100 countries [source: McDonald's].

The Big Mac is the most popular fast-food item on Earth. The famous jingle from the 1975 TV commercial taught Americans the ingredients for the Big Mac -- two all-beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onion on a sesame seed bun. In 2004, Mickey D's celebrated the fortieth birthday of the iconic burger. The company sells an astonishing 560 million Big Macs each year, even though they're only available in 13,700 of the franchises [source: Friedman]. People love the Big Mac, some so much that it's become almost an obsession. A man in Fond Du Lac, Wis., claimed he ate two Big Macs a day, every day since 1972. That makes 21,292 Big Macs as of August 2004. And, how many trips to the cardiologist?


Behind the Scenes

Given all the high-tech accouterments and lack of visible personnel, Horn & Hardart customers could be forgiven for thinking that their food had been prepared and handled by robots. Of course, that wasn't the case, and an argument can be made that automats succeeded at the expense of their hard-working employees. The managers of these restaurants still had to hire human beings to cook, convey food to the vending machines, and wash the silverware and dishes—but since all this activity went on behind the scenes, they got away with paying below-par wages and forcing employees to work overtime. In August of 1937, the AFL-CIO picketed Horn & Hardarts across the city, protesting the chain's unfair labor practices.

In its heyday, Horn & Hardart succeeded partly because its eponymous founders refused to rest on their laurels. Joseph Horn and Frank Hardart ordered any food uneaten at the end of the day to be delivered to cut-price, "day-old" outlets, and also circulated a hefty, leather-bound rule book that instructed employees on the proper cooking and handling of hundreds of menu items. Horn and Hardart (the founders, not the restaurant) also constantly tinkered with their formula, assembling as often as possible at a "sample table" where they and their chief executives voted thumbs up or thumbs down on new menu items.


Best Drinks

Port wine – Portugal produces some great wines but Port wine, its most famous dessert wine, is arguably its best wine.

Vinho Verde – A light, frizzy, and low-alcohol wine, Vinho Verde is a crowd-pleaser, particularly during the warmer summer months.

Medronho – Made from Medronho berries, aguardente de medronho is a clear spirit whose potency ranges from 40% to around 80% (depending on whether you’re buying it from the supermarket or your neighbour). It looks like vodka, but it’s much more drinkable.

Is Portuguese food spicy?

No ne baš. Piri-piri chicken can be spicy, although it usually isn’t that hot, but, generally, chilli isn’t used that much in Portuguese cookery.

Is Portuguese food vegetarian-friendly?

Begin a vegetarian in Portugal is challenging. It’s very hard to find a traditional Portuguese dish that doesn’t contain meat or fish, but vegetarianism is growing in popularity in Portugal. You’ll find plenty of vegetarian and vegan restaurants in Lisbon, Porto, and the Algarve, and many restaurants there will have at least one vegetarian option.

In really rural parts of Portugal, however, vegetarianism and veganism isn’t really understood, so be prepared for this.

Is food expensive in Portugal?

Eating out in Portugal is incredibly affordable, particularly outside of Lisbon and particularly at lunchtime. Avoid the tourist traps and the more modern restaurants, and you should be able to find restaurants serving dishes that range from €5-10 per dish in just about any part of Portugal.

What’s the national dish of Portugal?

Bacalhau is Portugal’s national dish. There are apparently 365 different ways of cooking bacalhau, and it’s recommended that you try at least one version while you’re in Portugal.

Is Portuguese food healthy?

It is possible to eat healthily in Portugal, but be aware that Portuguese cuisine is typically high in salt, carbs, and olive oil, while at the same time being low in vegetables. Obviously all of the cakes and desserts aren’t particularly healthy either.

To eat healthily in Portugal opt for dishes like vegetable soup and grilled fish.


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