When it comes to the splashiest food fads, what’s hot one year (or even one week) is out the next, and sometimes foods that should never even make it “in” at all show up on the scene anyway (looking at you, Sushi Donuts).
But no matter whether we're talking about crazy food inventions or basic eating habits, changing times mean changing preferences—which is what makes this Delish story so fascinating. The article impressively curates the most popular dishes in the U.S. from each of the last 46 years. Starting with 1970 (sorry to all readers born 1969 or earlier) and running up through 2016 (sorry to all newborn babies who are unable to read the article), you can find out which dish was making big waves when you were born. Check out the full list here, and meanwhile here are few of our favorites:
1972 - Tequila Sunrise
A little OJ, a little/a lot of tequila, some grenadine and no worries. The drink was so huge that year, Delish quotes Keith Richards saying that for the Rolling Stones, 1972 was "the cocaine and Tequila Sunrise tour." And then there was that little song by the Eagles, of course. Though you certainly weren’t drinking this if you were a baby in 1972, we’re sure you’ve come around to it by now. And if you haven’t, it’s time to embrace your destiny.
1973 - Fondue
Is there any food trend more quintessentially '70s than the fondue pot? The answer is no. Why the idea of holding a stick of meat in a boiling communal cooking pot became so popular we’ll never know. Let’s be glad everyone agreed to hide these away on a basement shelf next to their pet rocks and never speak of either again. Well, until the fondue trend came back again. And again.
1982 - Crème Brulee
1982 gave us a lot: Rocky III, Michael Jackson’s Thriller, and most important of all, the emergence of crème brulee as the most famous dessert in America. Here’s to you, crème brulee babies. What a time to be alive.
1993 - Sun Dried Tomatoes
Really the more surprising thing here is that sun-dried tomatoes weren’t more popular every other year as well. For shame, America. Thank you Italy-loving eaters of 1993 for restoring balance and adding that unmistakable chewy-tangy experience to salads and pastas everywhere.
1997 - Molten Chocolate Cake
A bad molten chocolate cake can never be that bad, can it? But a good molten chocolate cake is like eating a rainbow dipped in cacao and blessed by a thousand angels. If you don’t agree then it’s possible you’ve never had a great molten chocolate cake. Or you’re much more reserved in your descriptions of food. Either way, we’d be happy to discuss it with you over a slice of 1997’s most popular dish.
First, thanks to all the seven-year-olds out there for taking the time to read through this article. Second, we’d like to congratulate and apologize to you all for being born in the year of bacon. Those of us who were around certainly remember the time our nation lost its collective mind and start putting bacon everywhere. Bacon gum. Bacon floss. Bacon donuts. It would be untrue to say that the popularity of bacon has decreased much at all, but we think it’s a collective relief to our hearts that the hysteria over it has at least subsided a touch.
At least for now.
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