Minneapolis: Tater Tots
In 1953, Ore-Ida founders F. Nephi Grigg and Golden Grigg were trying to figure out what to do with some leftover slivers of potato and, in what can only be described as a stroke of genius, accidentally gave us the greatest, miniature potato treat of all-time: the tater tot.
Light and hearty, crispy and airy, tots have an almost cultish fan-base, and nowhere is it more concentrated than in the Upper Midwest. Because tots aren't just delicious on their own. They also stepped up the most classic of all Minnesota dishes: the Hotdish. The hotdish is a casserole of epic-midwestern proportions (both in size and starchy content) and when people started topping it with tater tots? Whoa (or as Minnesotans say, Uff-da)!
Lucky for us, among the tot-enthusiasts, were chefs who took ‘tatoes to the next level. You can find them perfectly fried and paired with sauces ranging from spicy to sweet, or served high-concept: filled with porcini béchamel next to fall-of-the-bone short ribs.
Worth a trip to Minnesota? You betcha!