I’m a pretty adventurous eater, I’m relatively easy to please (ahem, pasta anyone?) and I love to eat so it was tough coming up with a list of things I don’t like. Most things on this list I’d be able to get down in a pinch--say if I was being threatened with a gun or a dirty diaper--I’d just rather not eat at all rather than have to eat these tidbits.
1. Eggplant. Though I’d try eggplant if it looked appetizing enough (is it possible?) My only memory of it is when my mom attempted eggplant parmesan when I was a child and even she admitted it was a dismal failure (you know it’s bad when the cook walks away). I’ve never had the guts to try fixing it though I suppose it’s time to get past the memories and give it a whirl.
2. Three Musketeers Bars. YUCK! For being something as wonderful as chocolate they really messed this one up. I can’t remember the last time I ate one of these things and I could go the rest of mortality without a bite. Oh and I’m going to stick Cadburry Eggs in here too—the kind that simulate a raw egg? I will not eat them Sam I Am.
3. Canned vegetables. In any variety. Period. My grandparents eat them but I was raised on frozen or fresh veggies and canned vegetables are scary to me. So what do I do? I go and marry a Juice-Slurping Crazy. And that includes those cuter-than-ever baby ears of corn you see at the salad bar. They’re cute but don’t let that fool you they taste like soggy cardboard dipped in vinegar. The only exception to my fear would be tomatoes, artichoke hearts, legumes or olives.
4. Chili peppers. I can tolerate mild chilies but anything past the weakest jalepeno sends me into waves of heat stroke. I’m a total whimp when it comes to hot food and even when the waitress assures me it’s mild I have my doubts as to it’s palatability. Andrew, on the other hand, after his years among the Tejanos, loves it hot and spicy and we have to have dual bottles of salsa around here--one mild for me, a one hot for him.
5. Polenta. Just tastes bland and mushy to me, I think it’s more about the texture than the taste. Anyone out there have a killer polenta recipe guaranteed to turn me from the Dark Side?
6. Captain Crunch. One of Andrew’s favorites. Me? Not so much. Not even with Crunch Berries, though that does improve things a bit. But honestly, worst cereal ever? Kashi Go-Lean at Costco. I never throw out good food but one bite and that box was in the dumpster.
7. Fresh figs. I have a hard time with the texture and the grittiness. Plus, my sister in law (the biology teacher) once told me that each fig has the carcass of a bug inside leftover from its pollination. I’ve never looked at figs quite the same since though I can eat dried ones alright.
8. Persimmons. They look so pretty but taste so. . . so . . . bleh. Only had one once though, maybe it was a bad batch. Do persimmons have good batches?
9. Bananas. Don’t like them, never have, though our shaky relationship has soured even further with age (mine and theirs). I’ll eat banana bread and banana splits (put enough sugar in something and it’s palatable) but not fresh bananas a la carte. Oh, but I will slurp down a bottle of baby food bananas straight from the jar if given the chance--those are tast-y! When Andrew clerked for Judge Souter he witnessed how the judge ate bananas only when they were so ripe they’d blackened and liquefied. Then he’d stick a straw inside the peel and slurp out the guts. Like a spider with its prey. YUCK! Talk about your Fear Factor.
10. Raw tomatoes. By themselves that is. I’ll eat them on hamburgers and tacos and love them but to bite into a slice of raw tomato is decidedly unpleasant. One time I was visiting my grandmother in southern Idaho and she’d picked up these giant luscious-looking beef steak tomatoes. They were so beautiful I thought, “Surely something so pretty tastes good” and I gave it another go. Nope, they still tasted yucky, what a disappointment.
11. Sushi. You’d think it’s the raw aspect that upsets me so--and don't get me wrong it truly is hideously terrifying to me--but it’s the nori, or seaweed, that takes the cake. Somehow a whole nation of people have grown to love it so you’d think it couldn't be that bad but then the same thing could be said of Dame Edna and I can’t see what the appeal is there either.
12. Grape-flavored ANYTHING. Real grapes—yum—fake grape flavoring sends me into dry heaves. Goes back to a fluoride treatment I had as a kid (remember when they filled trays with gooky gummy stuff and then let it sit on your teeth while you gagged for fifteen minutes?) I ordered mine in grape, got sick to my stomach and it’s Goodbye to Grape Nehis ever since. I’m getting the willies just thinking about it.
13. Anything that is served alive, wriggling, or with its head still attached. This shouldn’t really count as an item because I’m sure there are plenty of things in the world that I’d hate but that I just haven’t tried (hello haggis, lutefisk, tripe, chitterlings, head cheese, blood pudding . . . ). The 12 previous items are all things I’ve sampled but I don’t know that I’ve ever eaten anything that falls into this category though I’m adding it nonetheless. I like most every vegetable and fruit, carb and sugar but with meats I’m much more jittery. After hearing the tales my brothers brought back from living in Asia I know I’d fake a seafood allergy before I could eat a raw octopus (he discovered too late that one doesn’t eat the ink sack) or minnows swimming in soy sauce. And if I had to I’d fake a heart attack.
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