Mud and Food, Week #3
As I was doing research on Mississippi mud, I was overwhelmed with information about the beer, the song, the coffee, the book, the art gallery, the baseball team, and about 100 other things all containing those two words somewhere in the title. Yikes! And to think I found all that when I was simply looking for the Mississippi mudslide cocktail! Your job is to write about five foods with regional names.
Creative Idea Gal’s Thoughts
I learned wonderful things doing research for today’s prompt. I learned that there are many things with the terms “Mississippi mud” and “Mississippi mudslide” in them. Both variations are more common than people think. They refer to the banks of the Mississippi river, which are dense and dark. In some cases like the baseball team, the name bears geographical importance, whereas the chocolate-rich foods most closely resemble the description of the banks themselves.
I loved all the different references to the Mississippi river that popped up in my research because they helped me to understand how common the terms were and how much about the south I didn’t know. It made me want to travel and experience other parts of the United States. Talking about foods, though, there are many other fine examples of foods that have regional names, such as: Philadelphia cheesesteak or cream cheese and Boston cream pie. All you have to do is research and write about five of these foods.
Creative Brainstorming Tips
Creative brainstorming is a great means to tie together unrelated concepts, but it can also backfire by yielding too much information which can confuse or obfuscate the original concept. In today’s writing prompt, I researched one concept that I thought was simple, Mississippi mudslide cocktail, and was overwhelmed with data on so many related concepts.
To combat information overload on related concepts, stick to the same category of your original concept. For example, since we are talking about food this week, my research is best focused on Mississippi mud food, and not on anything else.
“Indeed, the very concept of protected geographic origin is a tenuous one in the United States, which relies instead on trademarks that defend geo-specific brand names such as Boston Market (a national fast food chain based in Golden, Colorado) and Philadelphia Cream Cheese (manufactured by Kraft in Wisconsin) as well as Florido oranges and Idaho potatoes.” – Nicola Twilley, for Edible Geography
“There are many wines named for their locales (all Champagne is), and many cheeses — even Cheddar. Sometimes, though, the food name has little to do with the corresponding place. French fries, for example, are not French food; they are named for the way the potatoes are cut.” – Annie Scott, for Gadling
Writing Prompt 056
Prompt: Write about five foods with regional names.
- Step 1: Today’s prompt is not so much about misnomers as it is about geography and the unique names of foods. Research different areas of the United States and see if you can find some names that are named for locations.
- Step 2: Not every food that has a geographical name has a relationship with its location, but in many cases, it does, such as the Philadelphia cheesesteak. Try to get a historical perspective on the name and incorporate how those foods are marketed.
- Step 3: Write about five foods with regional names. You’ll be surprised at what you learn!
Please be sure to leave comments about this writing prompt. We want to hear from you!
About the Author
Amanda M. Socci, J.D., is a freelance writer with 14 years of experience writing professionally. Socci currently cuts her blogging chops on her personal portfolio blog, the Creative Idea Gal blog, and on an online news site, Mount Vernon Patch. Inspired by Nina Amir’s Write Nonfiction in November writing challenge, she created a unique 10-month training program for Writenonfictionnow.com and Writenonfictioninnovember.com blog visitors.
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