A Washington Post magazine piece suggested on Tuesday that even President Donald Trump's favorite food, namely hamburgers, was tied to the Russians.
"Even one of Trump’s favorite foods has a hidden Russia connection," read the headline of a guest post from Deena Prichep, a Portland journalist and author of a Russian cookbook.
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"It's high summer — hamburger season," Prichep wrote. "The char, the fat, the squishy perfection of processed bread sopping up the overflowing juices — doesn't it somehow seem like Americans' birthright? There's a reason that President Trump chose to serve hamburgers — twice — as an all-American feast for some all-American championship college football players."
"But peel back the oil-spattered pages of history, and you'll find that the sandwich so closely aligned with the stars and stripes was once also embraced by the hammer and sickle," she continued. "(Yep, like so much about this current administration, even Trump's beloved hamburgers have surprising ties to Russia.)"
American hamburgers unquestionably predate Russian versions, but Prichep's "Russia connection" is that in 1936, Soviet food commissar Anastas Mikoyan introduced the hamburger to his country after a fact-finding mission in the States.
"Mikoyan shared Trump's opinion of fast food. He was a great admirer," University of Helsinki sociologist Jukka Gronow told the Post. "If the war hadn't broken out in 1941, we would have a chain of McMikoyan's."
The jab that even Trump's food has Russian ties ironically mirrors an administration talking point back in 2017. "If the President puts Russian salad dressing on his salad tonight, somehow that's a Russia connection," complained White House press secretary Sean Spicer. (In response, a CNN fact-check noted "Russian dressing is actually from Nashua, New Hampshire.")