Seattle Times food writer explains her city by way of its food


SEATTLE — To define Seattle at all is a tall order. Right now, we’re involved in an expansive, sometimes contentious civic debate about who we are — in newspaper articles and online threads, in bars and cafes. With Super Bowl XLIX imminent, let me explain Seattle — by way of its food — to you, Boston, the city of baked beans.

There’s much discussion here of “newcomers,” of who they are and what they mean, of skyrocketing rents, of terrible traffic, of cultural shifts, of cold “natives.” The real natives, of course, ate Chinook, coho, and sockeye salmon, and steelhead trout. Stinging nettles, the curly tips of fiddlehead ferns, weirdly elongated razor clams, and hugely phallic geoducks are our delicacies now.