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Florida Cuisine
The many flavors of Florida

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Florida cuisine is probably one of the most unique and diverse in the world. The rich exchange of multicultural cuisines began when Ponce de León first staked a claim for Spain in 1513. Early Native American, Spanish, and European styles were significantly influenced by ingredients and flavors brought by the Africans in the sixteenth century, and by early Anglo-American settlers from regions north of Florida.

Through the years, Florida's basic Spanish and Southern cuisines have continued to blend with a wide range of cultures.

Will mango and pineapple salsas outdo grits and greens? It's a toss-up, and a delicious one.
- The Florida Cookbook, Jeanne Voltz, Caroline Stuart
Minorcans used the native datil peppers to flavor their sauces and pilaus, and in the early 1900s many Jewish restaurants sprang up as Jewish communities grew. People moving in from the northern states developed new ways to use guavas, fresh seafood, wild ginger, and countless other locally grown foods. In 1959, the first of several migrations of Cuban refugees added yet another new cuisine. Cuban sandwich shops, black beans, and arroz con pollo became commonplace. Bahamians, Haitians, Nicaraguans, Vietnamese, and many more ethnic groups continue to influence the local flavors, making it one of the country's most interesting regional cuisines.

This week's recipes span Florida's delicious diversity with several offerings from Guides who live throughout the state. Enjoy!

Recipes

Arroz Con Pollo
Banana Fritters
Black Bean and Rice Salad
Guava Pie
Conch Chowder
Gazpacho
Gulf Shrimp With Lemon
Low Country Chicken Pilau
Orange-Cranberry Pork Chops
Florida Orange Pie
Red Snapper, Spanish-Style

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