Some of them are obvious by name, but others just happened to be thought of here. Some of your favorite foods have their origins in New York State, from Buffalo Wings (obvious) to the Garbage Plate (Rochester). Here’s a short tour of New York’s food claims to fame.
Buffalo Wings– Buffalo-style chicken wings have their origins at the Anchor Bar, located at 1047 Main St. in Buffalo. Back in 1964, owner Theressa Bellissino had an excess of chicken wings and a few hungry boys to feed – her son and his friends. She fried the wings, made up a secret sauce for them, and served them with blue cheese dressing. The kids obviously liked them.
Beef on weck – another Buffalo food tradition, roast beef on a kimmelweck roll topped with horseradish. This sandwich is a staple in Buffalo restaurants and bars, but is very rarely seen outside of Western New York; its origins dated back to 1901, at a bar called the Delaware House. The rolls make the sandwich: covered with caraway seeds and salt, it just calls out to be eaten with a cold beer at hand.
Jell-O – in 1845, the patent for powdered gelatin was obtained by industrialist Peter Cooper, best known for building the first American steam locomotive. 40 years later, the patent was sold to Pearle B. Wait, a carpenter in Leroy, New York. Wait and his wife added strawberry, lemon, orange, and raspberry flavors to the powder, giving it the name of Jell-O in 1897.
Garbage Plate – it sounds disgusting, but many people claim it’s amazing. The Garbage Plate was developed at Nick Tahou Hots, a fast-food restaurant in Rochester, after college students came into the restaurant late at night asking for a dish with “all the garbage on it.” The concoction usually has home fries and macaroni salad as its base, then covered with any number of foods, including hamburgers, hot dogs, eggs, or steak. It’s usually topped with a meat sauce or a mustard sauce.
Baked Alaska – the idea for this popular dessert dates back to the early 1800s, but the name originated in New York City. Also known as a Norwegian omelette, it consists of hard ice cream on sponge cake, which is covered with meringue or pastry crust. The coating is uncooked until it is time to serve the dish, at which time it is either baked quickly in a very hot oven or using a food blowtorch. The name Baked Alaska comes from Delmonico’s Restaurant in NYC in 1876, and was named in honor of newly acquired territory Alaska.
Sources: “Anchor Bar original,” anchorbar.com
“Beef on Weck Sandwich,” whatscookingamerica.net
“Garbage Plate,” whatscookingamerica.net
“Baked Alaska,” foodreference.com