Saturday, September 16, 2006

Hot Dish vs. Casserole Debate

On September 15, 2006 at 11:44 pm I submitted the following letter to the editor of the Winonan, Winona State University's student newspaper:

Dear Editor-

I regretfully write this letter with disappointment in our dining services offered at Winona State University. During the week of August 28th, I witnessed a violation of a great Minnesota tradition that has been ingrained into our state for many generations. While dining at the Jack Kane Dining Center one afternoon, I discovered that tater tot hot dish was IMPROPERLY labeled tater tot casserole. I feel that our dining service, Chartwells, has let this Minnesota university down. As a proud Minnesotan for the past 21 years, I grew up with tater tot hot dish prepared by my mother; I come to Winona State and was very disappointed at the mislabeling of this classic meal.

I have noticed however in previous years that this meal was labeled properly as tater tot hot dish. But suddenly Chartwells has flip flopped its position on the great hot dish versus casserole debate. I, for one, am agitated that Chartwells has abandoned Minnesota. I do not feel it is necessary that Chartwells, currently serving a MnSCU institution should cater to non-Minnesota food labeling. Although I do not necessarily disagree with the labeling of tater tot hot dish as casserole outside of Minnesota, I do however agree that Chartwells needs to adhere to the Minnesota traditional labeling. Some examples would include pop, drinking fountain, duck duck grey duck and of course our beloved hot dish. So Chartwells, on behalf of all Minnesotans: please stop violating our food traditions and adhere to tater tot hot dish.

Jared Stene
Political Science/Public Admin Major

Please feel free to add your own commentary to this hot topic debate by submitting your own letter to the editor to the Winonan. The Winonan will accept letters up to 400 words, students of WSU must include their year in school, major and phone number. Non-students are welcome to submit letters as well, they must include name, address, and phone number upon submission. Anonymous letters are not accepted. I'll post the link to the actual published letter once the Winonan comes out on Wednesday.