So, I'm taking my daily walk this morning and I started thinking about American culture, or, more accurately, the lack of a truly national culture.
We have a wealth of regional cultures, but we don't have a national one. I don't view that as a problem. I think it's a strength.
But there's a problem. When we export culture to other countries, we try to export a national culture. In other words, we export things like bad TV, Starbucks, and McDonald's. It's bad for the world, because those things are all crap. And it's bad for the US because it makes the world think we're cultural idiots.
Why can't we export regional culture successfully? So I started thinking about something to export and a bulb lit up above my head! Let's export BBQ!
Seriously, this is a great idea! Norway doesn't have BBQs. The shack would play up the different regional BBQ styles, not just on the menu, but in the layout and decor.
You could have an area themed after Kansas City. (In what way? I dunno. My only experience with KC is that all the downtown businesses close at 5pm.) Another with a Memphis theme. One for the Carolinas. And, of course, a Texas section.
The menu would reflect this as well. Candy-coated KC dreck, of course. Luscious Memphis dry ribs. Pulled pork with all the Carolina sauces (vinegar, red, and mustard). And Texas brisket.
(By the way, the one true BBQ sauce is mustard-based and called
Carolina Gold. I will not entertain arguments to the contrary. If you don't agree, you're just wrong. Wrong wrong wrong! It's easy to make and I'll send you a recipe if you email me.)
You could play thematic music in each section as well.
And you could also incorporate a sort of Norwegian BBQ fusion cuisine. Instead of baking lutefisk, why not smoke it over some hickory. Hell, slather it with enough KC-style candy sauce and you might not even taste the lye!
Figure out some local wood to replace or supplement hickory.
What about using lefse instead of white bread?
Holy crap, what about rolling pulled pork up in lefse? Damn, that would be good!
You could also be tossing elk and reindeer into the smoker.
One final selling point is that BBQ is cheap food. In a nation where everything is hideously expensive, a BBQ shack could really compete on value. (The only things I've found in Norway that are reasonably priced are art prints of Edvard Munch's work, from the Munch Museum gift shop. Trust me on this one.)
I'm packing my bags!
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