The food: Sherman Alexie calls fry bread, the Native American staple, the âstory of our survival.â And for good reason. Its origins date back to about 150 years ago, when the U.S. government forced native tribes to embark on the "Long Walks" to reservations in different states, with years-long, starvation-rife stays in camps. The government gave the tribes canned, sometimes rancid white flour, processed sugar and lardâ the makings of what would become fry bread. South Dakota, home to a large Sioux population, named it as its official state bread in 2005. In taste, fry bread is similar to funnel cakeâthough fluffier, and less sweet.
Click on the map to see each state's distinctive food and where to get it in Portland.