Thread Number: 73861  /  Tag: Recipes, Cooking Accessories
It's getting hard to find specialty holiday food items.
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Post# 975672   12/27/2017 at 02:30 (298 days old) by MattL (Flushing, MI)        

I always do a big Christmas Eve dinner, with a Polish slant.  We long ago abandoned the old tradition of fish and cold food, but keep a few of the stuff we all liked - at lest some of us.  Herring was always a part of the Christmas eve meal, and I could usually find the kind I like, simple salt cured non flavored herring.  Historically it was headless mixed or milkers.  My dad would soak them overnight in fresh water to get the salt out them skin them and cut them into chunks and put them in a vinegar solution or for my mother oil.  We always put sliced onions on top of both.  Been part of our holiday for generations.


The last few years I've been able to get herring fillets,  not quite the same as the are boneless, but prep is very quick.  It was the third year for the 4kg tub I bough and wanted to get a fresh tub this year, went to the fish market and no luck.  Looked a bit on line and found not much available there either. As they are in a lot of salt the 1/3 jar I had left were still good, just did not look real appetizing in their original state, but once washed up and soaked were fine.


I'll add salted herring to the list of thing that are difficult to find around here, as is the Chicago Almond poppy filing I'm on the hunt for.  Next time I'm in Chicago close to the holidays I  will have to do some searching.  Odds are more favorable there I'd guess.

Post# 975675 , Reply# 1   12/27/2017 at 02:52 (298 days old) by Imperial70 (******)        

America's ethnicity is changing from a European dominated one to Asian, South American and Latino. The supermarkets no longer stock the international foods aisles with specialty foods from Italy and Greece. They now have Latino and foods from India. Not knocking any of it. Just that times have changed.

Post# 975698 , Reply# 2   12/27/2017 at 07:35 (298 days old) by vacerator (Macomb, Michigan)        
Salt cod

is also an old Italian tradition called buccala. Not sure of the spelling, but that's how it's pronounced. My family never ate it. It took days to soak the salt out, and was served prepared with a chunky tomato sauce with garlic, olives or capers in it.
While the American ethnic scene is more diverse than just european today, there are still large stores which stock familiar items from around the world.
There are still the smaller specialty markets which sell German, Italian, Polish, etc. foods as well.

Post# 975713 , Reply# 3   12/27/2017 at 09:18 (298 days old) by PassatDoc (Orange County, California)        

Most IKEA stores in the USA include a food market. The one in OC sells Swedish style herring in glass jars.

Post# 975718 , Reply# 4   12/27/2017 at 10:06 (298 days old) by GusHerb (Chicago/NWI)        

This area is still strong in European/Eastern European ethnicity so the food is still quite available. Though times change, places close and new ones open, some things one has to go a bit further to get or go elsewhere now. The Hispanic population is very large in this area too, finding good Mexican food is fairly easy.

Post# 975729 , Reply# 5   12/27/2017 at 10:43 (298 days old) by MattL (Flushing, MI)        

Agreed, I get to Chicago 3 or 4 times a year.  A cousin lives there and is back and forth to Michigan a number of times each year also, so I just need to identify where to get what I want and she may be able to pick it up.

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