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Confessions of a Fearful Foodie

October 29, 2010

Let’s get it right out of the way: I am fearful of eating certain foods.  Well, perhaps fearful is not the word.  Hesitant, reticent, leery.  Creeped out, even.  I love to cook, love to eat, love to share food with others, love to read about food.  But, as I alluded to in a previous post, there are foods that I just won’t eat.

I’d love to be more adventurous, really I would, but there are a few things that nag me about what I consider “weird foods”. Knowing full well that my foodie card is about to be revoked, perhaps I should explain myself with some specific items that give me the creeps:

  • Nope. No sir. Not gonna happen.

    Brains/other organs – really, as an American living in the land of plenty, I do not feel the need to eat “snout to tail”.  Livers, stomachs, tongues, cheeks, tails – all things that should be buried along with their now-dead owners.  I’d truthfully like to quit eating meat altogether, but I really do like hamburgers and boneless chicken wings.

  • Insects/Worms/Arachnids – again, no need.  I get plenty of protein and don’t need bugs in my diet.  Plus they are squirmy and disgusting (especially worms).  They’re really not food.  Come on.
  • Frogs – they are slimy and green. Yup, that’s my reason.
  • Eggs, other than chicken – I’m not really sure why I’m averse to this one.  But, for some strange reason, the thought of quail eggs or duck eggs just makes me want to retch.  Probably just because I’ve never eaten anything other that chicken eggs.  Friends of mine (Alisa & Stephen) keep extolling the virtues of duck eggs, but the only way they’re going to get me to eat one is if they sneak it in an omelet they make for me.  Hint.
  • Oysters/Clams/Mussels – I have been known to enjoy Oysters Rockefeller and fried belly clams, but I’m not a fan of the raw bivalves.  I have eaten them, and they remind me of cold mucus.  I’m done with them.  I tried.
  • Please don't eat me! I'm cute and fuzzy!

    Rabbit – I had a harrowing rabbit-as-food experience when I was a kid, and it will never leave me.  We were eating dinner at my grandparent’s house one night, and Grandma was cooking up a rabbit that Papa had apparently shot that afternoon.  I pulled up a chair to the kitchen sink, and peeked my little head over the side and saw the distinct shape of a rabbit, ears and all from what I remember, all skinned and purple.  I can still see that image in my head.  I can’t remember if I actually ate rabbit that night (I doubt it), but I know I have no interest in eating it now.  Heebie-jeebies.

  • Goat – I would probably eat this if I was traveling in the Middle East.
  • Whole Lobster – too much work, too many eyeballs and antennae, and too much green slimy stuff.  Lobster meat, lobster claws, lobster tails – all delicious and acceptable.
  • Okra – I am sure it doesn’t taste all that bad, flavorwise, but every description I’ve ever read uses the words “slime” or “slimy”.  As in, “Certain cooking techniques will prevent your okra dish from being overly slimy”.  Which means, “Oh, it’s gonna be slimy, all right, nothing you can do about that.  But you can maybe cut down on the sliminess by 0.2% by deep fying and slapping some hot sauce on it.” I will not eat any food that has the slimy built right in.
  • Tapioca Puddingwhat the f*** is tapioca anyway? Okay, I know what tapioca is.  But why would I want to eat it?  The texture of those knobbly little slimy balls makes my stomach turn.  Add creamy milky pudding to that party, and get ready to swab the deck, Cap’n.  Same goes for Bubble Tea (yes, I know, it’s tapioca) and Cream of Wheat (yes, I know, not tapioca).  I just threw up on my keyboard.

Other weird food things about me:

  • I will only order fish in a restaurant, and will never cook it at home.  Once bitten with food poisoning, twice shy.
  • I enjoy day-old sub sandwiches, where the tomato and lettuce juices seep into the bread and make it mushy.
  • I like to dip Wendy’s french fries into a Wendy’s chocolate Frosty.  I haven’t done this in years, but I know I like it.
  • I freaking hate celery.
  • I do not like Bailey’s Irish Cream.  Many people find this very odd.
  • My favorite breakfast is a butter & peanut butter hardroll from Stewart’s.  Only 86 cents!
  • I dislike regular raisins, but love golden raisins.
  • I cannot tolerate sour things.  Have you ever heard of supertasters?  In a nutshell, supertasters are people who experience taste at intensity levels way beyond normal people.  Personally, I believe that I am a sour supertaster, as I am unable to even *think* about a sour food without my mouth watering and my lips puckering.  I have not been tested, but I know this is true.

What’s your food weirdness?

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8 Comments leave one →
  1. Alisa permalink
    October 29, 2010 8:48 pm

    So when are you coming over for brunch?

  2. October 29, 2010 8:53 pm

    We are a product of our life experiences. My dad worked as a butcher when I was growing up, and he would bring home many of the items you mention. I suspect those dinners – a result of dad’s “benefits package” – are the reason that I thoroughly enjoy those “lesser quality” butcher’s cuts – brain, sweetbreads, kidneys, tripe, liver. I suspect growing up on Long Island explains my fondness for clams and mussels, especially picked up fresh from the beach. I am however totally with you on the worms.

    • October 30, 2010 5:55 pm

      Very interesting point – I hadn’t considered my upbringing in the equation. Two things come immediately to mind: I grew up on a dairy farm, and we could have all the milk we could drink. I now dislike milk. Second, my dad was (still is) an avid hunter. So, some foods that I enjoy are probably outside of many people’s comfort zone: venison and game birds such as partridge and pheasant. I haven’t had game bird in quite a while, though. I wonder if they’re as good as I remember.

      Thank goodness we weren’t too redneck: we never ate squirrel. I’m fairly certain my mom (having grown up in urban Albany) would not have allowed it.

  3. Theresa Conrad permalink
    October 31, 2010 12:57 pm

    I cannot (will not) eat anything soggy….that means no crackers in soup. In my opinion the soup is ruined if crackers are put in it. No slice of bread in french onion soup either; I eat mine straight up….just cheese, no soggy bread….not now, not ever! I also cannot put any fat from meat in my mouth….so as a result, I basically disect my pork chop, steak, ham, etc. so that not even a tiny piece of fat is left…..I will actually gag if it ends up in my mouth (which rarely happens). I’m with you on the clams, mussels, oysters raw or cooked….ain’t gonna end up in my stomach!

    • October 31, 2010 7:59 pm

      My favorite part of French Onion soup is the soggy bread! And soggy oyster crackers in chicken noodle soup…yum.

      So, I’m guessing you’re not a fan of bacon??

  4. Shannon permalink
    November 1, 2010 9:56 am

    1). Get ready for this one…fudge.

    Got very, very, very sick as a kid from some fudge from Holland (friend’s mother was Dutch) and I haven’t touched any form of fudge since. It’s very unfortunate for me. I threw up for three days and have no desire to repeat that experience, even though it’s not likely to happen.

    2). I also won’t touch keilbasa. It touches off the gag reflex for some reason. Just the smell of it makes me queasy.

    3). Black or white pudding. You only encounter it in Ireland or England, but I know what it’s made of and I will NOT put it in my mouth. No sir, no thank you.

    4). “Raw Bar” food or sushi. It’s a texture thing I think and an aversion to the possiblity of food poisoning. Ew.

    5). Any cooked leafy greens. It’s a texture thing. But I love me a raw salad!

    6). This probably doesn’t count but during my pregnancy, I could not eat pizza or even be in the same room with it. I had a HUGE aversion to it that made me sick to my stomach. Possibly because it was the first food to touch off the morning sickness (which is a misnomer because it is 24-hour sickness that is just worse in the mornings).

    Five days after I gave birth, no problem. Happily ate two slices. Weird.

    My weird food things include:

    1). Hating bananas with a raw passion. Hate, hate, hate them. But oddly enough, I love banana bread. I cannot figure that one out for the life of me.

    2). I love cheese, but not mac n cheese. I hate the stuff and I have no idea why. I am not fan of any soft cheese, so maybe that’s why. I have a co-worker that is convinced that if I had HER homemade mac n cheese, I’d be converted. We’ll see…

  5. Theresa permalink
    November 1, 2010 6:27 pm

    Believe it or not Wendy, I LOVE bacon…..crispy bacon that is. If by chance, any fat is found it is, of course, trimmed off. If it’s not cooked properly crispy…I won’t eat it. Shannon’s post reminded me of my own ker-azy pregnancy food issues. I could not eat tacos for a couple years after my first pregnancy….it was the last thing I had eaten before the “morning” sickness started, but here is the funniest thing. I HATE (loathe) turnips which my mother-in-law always cooked, but when I was pregnant I actually liked them. As soon as my daughter was born, couldn’t stand the site of them (or taste or smell)!!! Crazy things happen when you’re pregnant!!!

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