Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Eating the Opponent - and Michigan's U.P.

We'll be eating a traditional turkey dinner at Grandma's on Thanksgiving Day. Grandma is cooking most of it ahead of time so she can watch the game.

What do you mean, what game??!!??

The Green Bay Packers are playing the Detroit Lions, of course. That's The Game. Turkey Day dinner will be on the table after the fourth quarter clock winds down. In the meantime, our Eating the Opponent project continues. We decided to broaden the definition of Detroit to include the entire state of Michigan, including the Upper Peninsula - da U.P., der hey, to us Wisconsinites. U.P. residents, affectionately known as Yoopers, have their own unique menus.

I stopped at a local pasty cafe and shop -- okay, okay. Stop the snickering in the peanut gallery! That's Pass-Tees. Not pays-trees or pays-tees. Pass-tees. The pasty was a food that miners could carry in their lunch pail and eat with their hands when they had their mid-day break. Traditional filling ingredients are beef, cabbage, potatoes, carrots, onions and other good stick-to-your-ribs edibles stuffed inside of a strong crust. Yooper history contends that the pasty was brought to the continental United States by Cornish miners (not minors) who came to work in the copper and iron mines of the mineral rich U.P. Nowadays, locals serve pasties with ketchup (not gravy) or a special sauce that tastes like a spicy ketchup with jalapeno peppers.

Pasties out of the oven, ready to eat!

Pasties are baked, never fried, never nuked. I bought "breakfast pasties" with bacon or sausage and scrambled eggs inside - 5 for $10, plus one free - to serve Thursday morning. Our official Turkey Dinner will hit the table after the game, so we'll need a solid breakfast. I think Yooper style Breakfast Pasties fit the bill.

Now if any of you doubt that U.P. food is appropriate for Eating the Opponent, I give you this. I asked the cafe staff, both native Yoopers, if football fans in da U.P. are Packers or Lions backers. Without hesitation, they both declared, "Lions!"

I think I'll serve these with a side of Trenary Toast.

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Blogger Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

Brilliant choice for the day. Go Pack!

11/23/2011 8:54 AM  

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