Sira-sira store: Foods I avoid-A A +A
By Ober Khok
Friday, October 26, 2012
I HAVE written about foods that I can’t live without. Now it is time to write about foods I avoid eating. If you are like me, chances are you skirt around certain foods on the table.
You are not finicky in the strictest sense of the word in that you do like grains, fruits, fish, meat and vegetables in general. There are just certain dishes you do not eat. You spend so much time pushing away the hated greens and browns and reds that by the time you are done, everybody has already finished eating. Well, OK, you are a picky, little brat like me. Done? Pass the Hawaiian pork chop, please.
Why is it that you and I hate oatmeal? It has an image problem. Is it the off white color? Has it to do with our view of it as food for the sick? When we were small and Christmas trees were tall, according to that olden song, oatmeal starred in our morning menu when we had the flu. It was the home remedy most trusted by moms, with the result that today we can’t think of it in any other way.
This is sad. We would do well to eat oatmeal because it has been proven to help divert heart disease to people who hate oatmeal—just joking. Yet truly, the fiber in oatmeal gives it the power to sweep out bad cholesterol clogging arteries, and people like us have better heed what the doctor says.
The addition of chocolate powder for color only reminds us that oatmeal is now champorado, another snack or breakfast fare we do not like. Like incompatibility in human relationships, oatmeal just does not rock with us.
Anyway, one day we decided to give oatmeal a chance, as most people do in a difficult
relationship. We boiled a small amount; took it out of the fire when it was done, then added powdered milk instead of liquid milk, and condensed milk rather than sugar. When it was no longer hot, we popped it into the refrigerator so we could eat it really cold later.
After a few hours, we were ready to eat our experiment. The first thing to hit our senses was the coldness followed by the smoothness of properly cooked oatmeal and then there was this layer of sweet stickiness. It was in fact delicious. So now we are occasional users of oatmeal. Maybe someday we will mainline it. Pass the hotdog, please.
Cabbage, we have a war on cabbage. We hate the hard “rib” at the center of each leaf and when the vegetable is cooked, it smells up the kitchen. Nutritionists wax poetic when talking about this leafy vegetable’s ability to retard the progress of heart disease and cancer. However, our hearts are not touched.
We can be fooled into eating it as cabbage rolls, but the vegetable shouldn’t feel triumphant. It is the meat filling that attracts us. As staunch anti-cabbage demonstrators, we say it was just to keep the peace in the house. Pass the steak, please.
Many people like eating eyes—be it of a fish, a goat or an octopus. Aficionados say they look forward to eating fish eyes, sucking into it to retrieve the juicy and fatty membrane. We have no problem with eyes, we just don’t eat it. It is like drawing into the last thing that the creature saw.
It is not a hopeless case as we see it. Our vision has been clouded by bad experiences but with time, and by wearing the eyeglass of good sense, we can learn to love things that bring us good. For now, pass the ham, please.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on October 27, 2012.