What Food Is Florida Known For? | Iconic Florida Foods
When people think of American Cuisine, many will claim the only real contribution to global cuisine found outside of a ballpark menu can be found in a smoker. Yet, despite the omnipresence of this somewhat condescending opinion, America has taken her "melting pot" approach to cuisine, hybridizing a myriad of influences to form regional fare that is both inspired by its immigrants and wholly its own. Aside from BBQ, Americans can claim Soul Food, Cajun Cuisine, Pizza, and the California Mediterranean Diet as only a small example of our adaptation to global flavors. It is in Florida where our 3-sided access and superb Real Estate have attracted some of the most unique flavors in the country, with several distinct Florida foods found here and little elsewhere. Today we take a moment to answer the question: what are the most iconic Florida Foods? Read on to learn what you should try the next time you order up!
Fried Gator Tail
Fried gator tail isn't as widespread and available as one may think. Even some of the prominent fish houses and seafood restaurants in Boca Raton don't carry this Floridian classic. Known for tasting similarly to chicken with a more chewy, less fibrous texture, alligator meat is high in protein, low in fat, and fries up incredibly well. Enjoy alligator tail the way you'd enjoy fried chicken, tossed or dipped in your favorite sauce.
Another phenomenal expression of Florida cuisine, conch fritters are the "falafel" of South Florida - a blend of breadcrumbs, conch, minced celery, bell peppers, onion, and seasonings. The conch fritter is a mainstay of Key West tiki bars, a perfect quick bite on gameday, washed down with a cold one at one of the many waterfront restaurants and bars found across Boca Raton and South Florida at large. This zesty, decadent treat is served best with aioli and fresh squeezed lemon or lime.
Key Lime Pie
What says Florida more than Key Lime Pie? Though the other foods on our iconic Florida foods list are undebatably native, Key Lime pie is strictly sourced from the golf-ball-sized, Monroe County limes and blended with the requisite ingredients to make this tangy, sweet, and creamy treat an unforgettable taste of South Florida. While the Bahamas serve up a mean conch fritter, and we're not opposed to Louisiana gator tail, the Key Lime Pie is undeniably, truly, and exclusively Floridian, and is a source of pride for any native who loves their backyard and the cuisine that flows forth.
The Cuban Sub
The Cuban Sub is a classic panini-style sub that is often credited to the dual Cuban communities working in Key West and Tampa. These early Cuban migrants worked in the cigar industry, and with the arrival of thousands of ex-pats following Castro's revolution, the Cuban sub went mainstream. The Cuban sub features ham, mojo roasted pork, mayonnaise, mustard, pickles, and swiss cheese. The resulting blend of flavors, or mixto in Spanish, is the perfect complement of sweet, spicy, salty, and savory, and a proud expression of our Cuban-American population.
The Kumquat is a small tree-borne fruit, visually resembling an orange and the size of a large olive. Native to Southern China, the kumquat, and its cousin the loquat are common fixtures in native gardens but rarely sold in major grocery stores. Shortly after their introduction to Europe in 1846, they were carried to North America, and despite their relative cold-hardiness compared to larger citrus species, seem to find little in the way of willing growers outside of Florida.
The only packaged snack on our list of iconic Florida foods, these coconut patties can be found at most tourist shops and rest stations throughout the state of Florida. The sweetened, shredded coconut encased in a delicious shell of dark chocolate is the perfect road trip snack or sweet treat to enjoy at home. These iconic yellow boxes are perfect gifts, stocking stuffers, and the best fit for just about anyone who loves an Almond Joy or Mounds bar. Be wary, these will melt! It's best to keep these out of your beach bag and enjoy in the cool confines of your AC.
For More Edible Delights In Boca Raton & South Florida - see below...