Chow down

Call it serendipity… I was going through my list of local food traditions, trying to decide which one to post about next, when I saw this discussion on our message boards about another regional favorite – chow chow. (And they give a shoutout to my Farmers’ Market, yay!)

You can tell it’s mostly a local favorite, because if you search for Chow Chow, chowchow or chow-chow, you get this:


And, while he’s cute, he doesn’t exactly look like a relish made from a mixture of pickled vegetables to me.

No, I meant this kind of chow-chow:


Anyone eat it? What do you think? I’ve only had it a couple of times… what sticks out to me is how sour it is.

About Joan

My name is Joan and I'm a lifelong Yorker. Throughout high school and college, I swore I was getting out of here as soon as possible. Now, a few years later, I can't think of anywhere I'd rather be. I love my town, and I hear every day from readers who love their towns, too. So please, connect with me and let's share what makes life in York County great. I'm here to help you enjoy this place as much as I do!
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5 Responses to Chow down

  1. Nickie Dobo says:

    My mom’s side of the family (Clearfield County) makes chow chow, but it’s a really odd combination.
    First, it is super hot — not sweet at all. It’s a mix of whatever was left over in the garden plus green olives and those round hot pepper rings you get in a jar.

  2. Mark Grubic says:

    So, you know I have to weigh in on this…
    Of course Chow-Chow is definately a local favorite (not for me – it has veggies), so I thought I would check around here in austria to see if I find some similar foods. Guess what, I did, somewhat. Here in Austria, when you go to a Gasthaus (local restaurant/inn) and you order say Wienerschnitzel, you usually get a ‘salad’ with it. The salad can be a potato salad (cold, with a vinegar dressing) or a veggie salad somewhat in the vein of Chow-Chow (corn, peppers, cucumbers, etc…) I will have to do a little more research to find out some of the differnt names for these salads to see if they resemble Chow-Chow. So, I think this is another German-ancestor hand me down for our area. I’ll check in soon with the results!
    Bis Später
    von Österreich,

  3. Rob says:

    Homemade at Whitcombs on Roosevelt Ave (north).
    But… they are closed until spring.

  4. Sally A. Strickhouser says:

    I am the church secretary here at Mt. Nebo and Mt. Olivet United Methodist Churches here in Delta, Pennsylvania. Mt. Nebo makes chow-chow almost every year and sells it right before our famous apple butter is made and sold in October. I think we make chow-chow late summer and it is a sweet and sour vinegar-based dressing with corn, green beans, carrots, onions, yellow beans, lima bean, kidney beans, great northern beans, red & green & yellow peppers, cauliflower, celery chips, and pearl onions. The brine consists of white vinegar, water, sugar, celery seed, mustard seed, and tumeric. The recipe is in the Mt. Nebo cookbook we had published a year ago. It is delicious!!!

  5. I eat it all the time. In fact right now, I have Cajun Chow-Chow, Southern Chow-Chow and Datil Pepper Relish in my refrigerator. It is a southern thing. Growing up as a kid, we eat it on pinto beans with cornbread.

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