The Festival of Forgotten Foods

The Festival of Forgotten Foods

Food & Drink

The Festival of Forgotten Foods


You know about the Philadelphia cheesesteak. But do you know about Wilbur buds, Cope’s corn, pepper pot soup or teaberry ice cream? These unique regional specialties are known to Philadelphia natives—and a festival this weekend is bringing them back into center spotlight.

Festival organizers say that, over time, these foods have slowly vanished from menus and dining tables across the region. To correct that, some of the East Coast’s culinary past will be featured at the Reading Terminal Market in Philadelphia this Saturday, November 14, in what’s being called the first-ever Festival of Forgotten Foods. Check it out in the Center Court of the Market, at 12th and Filbert Streets, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The featured foods include:

  • a candy known as Wilbur buds, originally made in Philadelphia and a precursor to the Hershey Kiss;

  • Cope’s dried corn, made only in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania (and, incidentally, one of our Food Channel editor’s favorites for a Thanksgiving corn casserole!);
  • fried catfish and waffles, the 19th century equivalent of the Philly cheesesteak, back when the plentiful catfish were plucked right from the Schuylkill River;
  • pepper pot soup, renowned as the soup that won the Revolutionary War;

  • pepper hash;
  • snapper soup;

  • fried oysters and chicken salad;
  • Cape May salt oysters;

  • butter creams;
  • heirloom cranberries;
  • black walnut cupcakes; and,
  • teaberry ice cream.

Several of the Market’s vendors are participating in the upcoming Festival, offering more than a dozen ‘forgotten foods’ for attendees to sample, including a live demonstration of how to make horseradish.

_See our Editor’s blog about the Reading Terminal Market, here.


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