Now before you get the impression that I dislike saltwater taffy, I don’t. I really enjoy saltwater taffy. In fact, my wife introduced me to chocolate-covered saltwater taffy, which if you have never tried it, is delicious.
In a recent article from Far and Wide, they highlighted the best signature foods in each state. The question I have is, is saltwater taffy really our best signature food in New Jersey? As I said nothing against the candy, but would a more traditional food be appropriate?
As far as the history of saltwater taffy, according to Taffy Town, “When Was Salt Water Taffy Invented? Most food historians believe saltwater taffy was invented in the early 1880s. The story begins with a gentleman named John Ross Edmiston. The owner of a small boardwalk postcard shop in Atlantic City, Edmiston hired a man named David Bradley to sell taffy alongside his wares.”
So Atlantic City is where it all began and now we have saltwater taffy up and down the Jersey Shore with taffy stores in almost every beach town in Jersey.
I started thinking about what foods would be our signature food here in the Garden State, other than candy. Let’s begin with our nickname the “Garden State”. Would Jersey tomatoes or Jersey corn be a better signature food? We have some of the best tomatoes and corn in the world. Let’s also add blueberries. An interesting fact according to Wikipedia, “Hammonton is a town in Atlantic County, New Jersey, United States, known as the “Blueberry Capital of the World”.” This is where we go to pick our blueberries each year.
In addition, let’s add seafood, maybe clams to our list. How about Jersey pizza or Jersey disco fries? Something from the boardwalk like sausage and peppers or the cheesesteak?
Just seems like we have a bunch of options for candy, but at the end of the day, I do enjoy a bit of saltwater taffy so I guess it’s not a bad choice.
What do you think should be New Jersey’s signature food? Post your comments below.
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