Examples - cilantro, anchovies - what foods, if any, do you stay away from when entertaining because of polarization?
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Love -Brussel Sprouts. Hate-Okra
Rachael is a trusted home cook.
I'm with you on both - no vegetable should be slimy....
Sam is a trusted home cook.
I hate stewed, braised Okra.
Fried in cornmeal..it's wonderful.
Cynthia is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.
Can't sleep in the same house with brussels sprouts.
Meg is a trusted home cook.
Try Madhur Jaffrey's recipe for Curried Okra with farmer's market okra. My children devoured it and they both hate okra.
If you wash your okras and then dry them one by one -and- use a splash of lime juice or wine vinager when you cook them and hardly any liquids theyll turn out DD:dry and delicious...promess you.
Abbie is a trusted source on General Cooking.
Miracle Whip vs Mayo! Can create a house divided more than a UT / A&M marriage! (I am a mayo girl myself ...)
I always knew you had good taste.
Cilantro is big around here. The partner will only eat the stems because the leaf tastes like soap to him. Anchovies too, I'll put half my pizza so that half will be mine and all mine.
"Flavor chemists have found that cilantro aroma is created by a half-dozen or so substances, and most of these are modified fragments of fat molecules called aldehydes. The same or similar aldehydes are also found in soaps and lotions and the bug family of insects."
Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.
Hate lots of raw onions and also raw garlic a little is ok . Raw oysters turn me off.
Can't get enough!
Cilantro tastes like soap to me too!
This is weird, but I absolutely can't stand bananas, and my boyfriend wishes for banana bread just about every week! Also, I love yogurt, sour cream and goat cheese (things with tang, basically), and he hates them all! How sad life must be without goat cheese....
I'd be interested to hear if other Cilantro haters can tolerate the stems. My partner's Mom took us out to eat at a very nice Persian resturant and they served bread with a plate of Cilantro. He was going all Mortia Addams on the Cilantro..pulling off the leaf and chowing down on the just the stems on the bread. His Mom was looking at him WTF are you doing? "Can't stand the leaf..the stem is just fine for me now".
I am not a huge cilantro fan, in small doses I have some here I will try the stem and let you know what I think.
Oh...my Sister has the Banana hate too. Says it smells and tastes like nail polish remover.
I'm always glad to hear there are others with my on bananas! I have a very sensitive sense of smell, so just having one around (or a peel in the trash) can make me feel sick. They have a VERY strong scent!
I'm not too big on eating bananas but I will if it is very firm. But I do love banana bread, and you have to use very ripe bananas for that. They have an almost fermented smell to me.
HATE OKRA! in ANY form.. GROSS!! EEW!,
Agree with the acetylene nail polish remover smell of the banana , Makes sense, since acetylene is the by product of ethylene synthesis (which bananas generate while ripening )
Actuallly the chemical in nail polish is called acetone, and ethylene is produced by most fruits, not just bananas.
For the first time in my life I had okra that I really liked. It was chopped in small circles and deep fried and salted, and it was actually delicious. Previous experiences were not so great! The place: Crook's Corner outside of Chapel Hill, NC. One of the most amazing meals i ever had - shrimp and grits, Hoppin John, Oh My!
Okra is one of the great unsung foods. It's delicious fried and curried and I love it every which way. The flowers are amazingly beautiful as well. A lot of these dislikes can be a problem of preparation and access. I didn't like okra until I found fresh okra, esp in farmer's market.
amysarah is a trusted home cook.
Black licorice - or anything in that family of taste (anise flavored cookies; anisette, Pernod, Ricard, ouzo, etc.) Frankly, I don't even like fennel, for that reason (I know, how uncool these days!) Even dishes heavy on tarragon don't appeal, because it can taste too licorice-y. Possibly my only major food aversion. I must have been traumatized as a child by black Good & Plenty.
And I love black licorice! This is definitely polarizing in my apartment! I'm not allowed to cook with fennel or fennel seeds
Black Good & Plenty, black licorice, black jelly beans -- love them all!
Lisanne is a trusted home cook.
I like black licorice. But I went through a fennel phase, until I realized I just didn't like it, so why was I cooking it each and every week? I have now been fennel-free for 17 years...
creamtea, thanks for sharing your fennel epiphany. Long before it became the vegetable du jour, my mother made a shaved finocchio salad - which I really wanted to like as a child, because it sounded like Pinocchio. But, no. Then in the last few years when it became so trendy here, it seemed to lurk around every corner; it was hard to go to a dinner party or navigate a menu without a run in. A small amount of fennel seed in, e.g., porchetta, I can take. A whole dish of fennel? Kind of the culinary equivalent of chalk-on-a-board for me. Glad I'm not alone.
Like black licorice except for the salty kind. Bleeccch...
I think it's hilarious how brussel sprouts are now the darling food--when everybody figured out how to fix them.
LOVE fried okra--nothing slimy there
but my "ekk" food that everybody loves--coffee. Love the smell, tried it every way, just can't stand it.
People used to cook Brussels spouts to death...until they tasted like Satan's sulfur soaked testicles.
And broccoli..people used to cook that to gray. I steam in a bowl..covered with plastic wrap and a bit of water for 1 min only in the microwave...and serve with a wassabi mayo topping.
Or quickly stir-fry with some oil and water..and red pepper flakes and a finishing touch of sesame oil.
People used to really overcook veggies...into mush and kids hated them.
I don't care for coffee too much..but "Sanka" crystals on ice cream is good childhood memory for me.
Ok, foods that divide populations into love-hate polarities: capers, anchovies, okra, peppers of any color, calamari, olives of any color, clams, oysters, anise from fennel to Pernod, meat of any kind, pita chips (seriously), liver in any form including pâté, cilantro of course, nuts due to allergies. Okay, I think those are the big ones. When preparing a menu for a client, one of the first things I ask is what food sensitivities/dislikes we need to avoid. When preparing a menu at home, buffet or seated, I figure it's my home and my food. That is not to say that I include all of the above just because I can, but I'm not afraid to make great foods with great flavors and explain the components of each. When added to the right dish in the right way, I find people will be happily surprised to learn that that they've just eaten something they thought they hated. I especially love, love, love converting people to anchovies, capers, and calamari. And okra. And cilantro.
Oh, B, I may be your biggest challenge converting to calamari! Saw too many of those shy little critters when I was diving and just can't even look at the little arms with the little cups. And I promise no brussel sprouts in the house if you ever come to Seattle to visit!
I agree with this. as long as it's not an allergy, I tend to ignore when people say they don't like this or that and cook what I myself like. They'll usually come around. I've spent a couple years working on a friend who "hates" desserts. I finally got her with apple pie last month!!
Ok, your lovely description may just put me off them, too.
I refused to touch Okra the first time I had visited my to-be MIL, . Its kind of prized in South indian Cuisine, so she had it made since I was coming to meet the In laws for the first time..
Nope, if that opp could not convert me along with the life long string of advice/admonition/threats of 'Eat your OKRa, or else you wont be good at Math', Nothing will! (to compensate my lack of math skills, I married a Mathematician!)
I cannot stand sushi! Can't see, hear or speak of it. Too much of the live stuff when I lived in Tokyo - really stopped the night the spiny lobster crawled off my plate because it wasn't dead...
Oh, you'll get over it. Eventually. I love sushi..well more sushimi.
Catfish..even tho I posted a runner up recipe for it...We had catfish ponds in my youth, so I had LOTS of catfish.
The thing that really put me off catfish was the fish-kills we'd get every few years. Going out in a row boat to skim off floating dead catfish will put you off the fish.
But, I eventually got over it. It just takes time.
I consider it a challenge..to make something you'd normally not use into something excellent.
(Now, there's this can of SPAM in the cabinet that's taunting me).
feel slightly ill reading this
I could eat my weight in sushi.
And rattlesnake - it does not taste like chicken no matter how often people say it does!
Chops is a trusted home cook.
Sad to admit that I detest cilantro, corriander, lemongrass & coconut milk...
oh, and beets & celery (raw).
I'll throw my hat in the mix.
Cannot, will not, just despise zucchini. Blech! Love foie gras...
Hate Miracle Whip, love mayo.
Love vodka martinis, hate gin martinis.
Love perfectly cooked medium rare lamb, hate mutton.
Love aged cheeses, hate Velveeta.
Love PB&J's, hate Fluffernutters.
Love potato croquettes, hate Tater Tots...
Love Marcella Hazan, hate Rachel Ray.
need I say more?!
Mushrooms, not because of the taste, but the texture. And the smell. Other texture turn-offs: bananas and potatoes.
Anchovies. I keep trying, and well-meaning folks like to say that you can't taste them, they just add a certain savouriness. Um, is that what you call the foul oily-fishy layer coating my mouth?
I think a big deal of anchovy hate is the American canned anchovies. Very fishy, salty and sometimes mushy. (well most of the time).
Anchovy paste in ceaser salad dressing is great.
And did you know...Worcester sauce is made with anchovies. This might put you off Worcester sauce, but they salt and extract the juices of anchovies that perk for months..squeezing out the fish juice..and mix with spices and put in barrels to age for Worcester sauce.
I probably shouldn't told you that..as you'll never make a red-beans and rice again. (g). Or a decent bloody mary.
I don't know, I've tried all kinds. It's the oil, I think. I love fish but don't eat smoked salmon for the same reason. I do love Worcestershire sauce, especially on fish and chips! Oh, and in a Bloody Caesar (like a Bloody Mary, but with Clamato juice), or in a Caesar salad. But not anchovies themselves. I love Vietnamese/Thai fish sauce too, which is also made from fermented anchovies. I realize there's no logic here, but I am what I am!
Best bloody mary garnish. Wisconsin best beef sticks. (think slim jims..and then forget slim jims as they taste like pepperoni flavored newsprint). Some celery or cucumber wedges..and for a meal in a glass, some boiled shrimp and olives. It's breakfast, it's brunch, it's cocktail, it's a meal in a glass, it's over garnished! It's great.
My husband won't touch anything too briny or full of vinegar: olives, capers, pickles, etc. (Something to do with an olive mistaken for a grape when he was a kid.) I, however, think HLA's drinking vinegars are a stroke of genius. Cilantro, mushrooms, and bananas come up for me too with my friends. Some love them, some hate them. I still can't figure out how to serve a turnip so I'll like it. Cumin and cardamom also seem to turn some people off--the strong flavors or something.
hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.
Thanks for the shout out!
Oh yes - HardLikeArmor's drinking vinegars are amazing!
You're making me blush!
My partner doesn't like pork. He grew up on a farm in Arkansas and his grand parents had a pig farm and a rice farm. He was bitten on the ass by a mother pig while trying to castrate her babies.
For some reason, he uses that incident as his hate of pork. I'd think it'd be Payback. But I think it's because they used to cook pork to deathly dry chops back in the day.
However he does sport a cute little pig bite dimple scar on his ass.
OUCH!!! But I guess i can't blame Momma Ms. Piggy
My brother and sister in law do not eat tomatoes. They will eat tomato sauce, ketchup, and other tomato based products but not raw or even chunks of lightly cooked tomato. And they haven't "outgrown" it. I think it's funny that they found each other.
I'm Nigerian and I like Okro....BUT only if its grated and cooked and turns a healthy texture of mucill.....you know the word. Now I have Okro chips (Deep fried - I had them at Wholefoods), pickled (I never had them but grossed out at the sight at WIlliams Sonoma) and can tolerate them in Indian style dishes.
Snails......I couldn't, wouldn't try French-style snails without some pay off but serve me 'cleaned'/unshelled Nigerian snails, peppered and sauced and I'll happily finish off a bowl!
I've never tried grits but am already on the other side of the stonewall - forget fence! I imagine it is like cooked oats....and can't imagine having that savoury.
And celery = I stay well away from it. I love Celeriac but I can't stomach the smell, or taste of celery - suprisingly though...I used to be able to.
And finally tinned sardines get to me these days. Thanks for asking!
Barbara is a trusted source on General Cooking.
I love this question! My husband and I have almost exact opposite taste in food. He grew up with a mom who kept kosher and was a very picky eater. I grew up in New Orleans where we had contests to see who could make the biggest pile of shrimp shells and crab and crawfish carcasses. (bonus points for sucking the heads). All the things I think make food interesting-- mustards, olives, capers, strong cheeses (feta, parmesan, bleu, etc)--he hates. As in with a passion. And I'm not a fan of liver, slimy fish in cream sauce (actually most things in cream sauce), gelatin almost anything, runny egg whites, cooked celery. When we did the octopus and squid contest, I couldn't even open the page because the sight of that little raw octopus on the front page grossed me out so much.
runny egg whites are so icky
I can tell you a funny story about ordering 3-4 lbs of baby octopus (I was doing a med-style grill mix) and receiving a 4.5 lb baby octopus.....very different. Of course, I didn't discover this until I got home because it was all neatly wrapped in butcher's paper. I got home and tore into the package eagerly. The tentacles just flopped out everywhere (they were really really long!) and the giant head just sat there. I have never been intimidated by my food before. My husband walks in the back door, immediately cries out, "what the #[email protected]!$# is that awful stench?", rounds the corner, sees the octopus and immediately starts musing out loud about his nut-job of a wife finally going round the bend....
Niknud, what an experience with your baby octupus! What did you end up doing with it?
With a shameful expression on her face: I was too scared. I didn't do anything with it. Actually, I bravely used the kitchen shears to cut off the tentacles thinking I could do a kebob of some sort with it (Ok, I'm having flashbacks...walking away from the computer......coming back more composed) but I was just overwhelmed with the sheer size and sliminess of it. Seriously, the tentacles were drooping to the floor from the kitchen counter like some scene out of Aliens or something. And at some point during this process, my husband comes in holding a washcloth over his face with one hand and a very large gin martini in the other and quietly tells me to stop the maddness. He handed me the drink, told me to go sit down and that he'd take care of it for me. Away went the octopus and he came back a little while later with some fresh clams and mussels. The really hilarious part of it was that following Monday he forgot to take the trash to the curb. Nothing like two week old, rotting, festering, stinking 4.5 lbs of octopus to really endear you to the neighbors.....shudder!
Niknud, this story belongs in the Food52 hotline hall of fame! LOL
I know, right? You seriously couldn't make this stuff up! Although I can't help but wondering If I'd had FOOD52 in my life at the time the situation might have been salvadged through a timely hotline appeal. Though it must be acknowledge that, in the interests of marital harmony, clams may have been the more prudent choice....
FANTASTIC story! Love the washcloth-gin picture you conjure so perfectly!
It was truely the only time I've been scared of my food. Shudder. It took one more restorative martini before I was ready to get back on the saddle!
Emily is a trusted source on General Cooking.
I love, love brussels sprouts and okra!!! Could eat them every day but I do NOT think okra should be in gumbo because of the slime factor. I grew up in Louisiana and always preferred an okra and tomato-free gumbo.
My husband doesn't like bitter greens and root veggies. I could eat them all day but the bitterness can be off-putting for him. Same with the herbaceousness of bell peppers. I eat them like apples but unless they are red or yellow and cooked, he can't handle them.
I think beets and liver are other foods that are totally love/hate. I love the former, hate the latter.
And for the most part, I do not love fish + tomatoes.
Orzo - is it a pasta trying to be rice or rice trying to be pasta...all I know is that is banned in our house.
I've heard the cilantro thing is genetics - some people are just wired to think it tastes like cilantro. Not sure if it is true but it is interesting since there is always such a huge divide.
Beets..I just can't stand them. I've tried and tried, but each try only reinforces my dislike. I guess some things we just never get over!
Add your answer here
Tuna casserole... Yuck!
Tripe ... yuck!
Kidneys .... yuck!
Pretty much everything else (except root beer) ... YUM!!!!
I agree except for the root beer part! I love a good root beer.
I dislike tripe so much, that whenever my parents would make it, I'd avoid the pot that it was cooked in until it's been washed several times afterwards (I've gone as far as pouring bleach solution in it).
I don't hate many foods, but absolutely cannot tolerate blue cheese or horseradish/wasabi/hot mustard. There's a substance in mustard seeds and horseradish (Allyl isothiocyanate) that gives you that strong nose-hit...makes my eyes water just thinking about it. First job I ever had was working in marketing for a cheese company in upstate NY. First day on the job, president of the co. walks in with a cutting board that had a huge root-looking thing on it, some of which was sliced up. Try it, he urged, clearly proud of the horseradish plant that his family also owned and operated down the road. Painful intro to the co...I choked it down. First time I had wasabi was when my part-Japanese college roommate invited me to meet her mother (and as it turns out, several of her mother's Japanese friends) at a local Japanese restaurant. I had never had sushi before - and I saw everyone mixing this green paste into their soy sauce, so when in Rome... When I took that first bite, it was all I could do to hold it down, knowing that gagging at the table would've been a major cultural no-no, not to mention throwing up, which is what almost happened. Still can't get near wasabi to this day.
Anything spicy. For me, the spicier the better, but I have lots of friends and family who physically (tongue blowing up style) can't handle it.
I usually don't serve fennel, okra, or cilantro to guests. I love all three, but I know many people don't.
My sister will not walk into a house that has goat cheese in it. She cannot tolerate it, just the smell sets her off.
Anita is a vegan pastry chef & founder of Electric Blue Baking Co. in Brooklyn.
People can be weird about bell peppers. I love peppers, chilies, spicy food...all kinds, but have to tone it down for most audiences. I am big on black pepper, again, some don't like. I am NOT a fan of white pepper, for whatever reason, it tastes like bad breath and smells like dandruff to me.
Tomatoes: people who won't eat them annoy me. They always make an exception for ketchup.
Marmite: I have never tried it but am super curious. Some people are rabid fans and others have a total aversion.
Stinky cheeses: how can you eat something that smells like rotten feet?! People who are into those freak me out but I am touched by their fanaticism.
i luv that you are touched by the fanaticism of people who like stinky cheeses. my children call them the cheeses of mass destruction. :)
I'm amongst the weird - love all types of peppers, except green bell peppers; they always taste sort of metallic and institutional to me, regardless how fresh or well-prepared. Also re: Marmite - my British housemate in grad school had to have it on buttered toast every single morning. It was almost ritualistic - her homesick-soul food. (I think its one of those things you have to grow up with - or have in your DNA - to fully appreciate.) Stinky cheese - wouldn't say I'm quite a fanatic, but there's something almost primally satisfying about a good, ripe, funky, earthy...yes, smelly cheese. But it's not something I'd serve to a cheese-squeamish guest. More for me to eat later!
oops, I accidentally hit "agree". Cheese: the stinkier, the better :)
This is such a great thread. Meat is one of the foods I avoid cooking for guests because I know so many vegetarians. It's crazy, since I grew up in the Midwest and no one would have thought about a company meal without meat then.
For me, gin.... had an unfortunate drinking experience when I was 16, and am grateful that my mom doesn't follow food pickles. Just a whiff makes me feel deathly ill.
Cilantro goes into most of my company meals, since Indian vegetarian food is my quick and easy menu for a crowd . I'm careful about heat, tho... try to have some on the side for those who like it.
My older brother still eats like a kid. I visited him when he was living in San Francisco and offered to take him out to any restaurant... we walked around for hours, as he rejected option after option... finally agreed to a Japanese restaurant where he could order tempura. Likes crisp fried things. When he comes to visit, I stock potatoes (have to be cooked crisp), hamburger, saltine crackers (eats them with ketchup), Coke, green peppers (raw only). He tries to be gracious about our regular meals, like rice and beans, but can't tolerate foods like shrimp and even the sight of anchovies grosses him out.
These are the most fun food pickles, never imagined them happening when food pickle started. Also v happyto have the idea about drinkable vinegars. Going to search recipes for hardlikearmour's ideas now. :)))
I'm so with you. Vodka does the same thing to me for the same reason. Can't even look at the bottle, no matter how beautifully designed. Thank heaven my parents are dead.
Talking of polarized.. I must confess, I absolutely HATED any kind of cheese that came from a goat..to the extent I'd discretely apply a tissue to my tongue to wipe out the taste.. & surprisingly, (I don't remember exactly when, but definitely after getting into F52), I'm HOOKED on to it.. I just LOVE it!
Has anyone mentioned coconut? I hated it as a kid, I couldn't understand why anyone would ruin a cake by dredging it with shredded coconut? Now I like it in most situations but my husband hated it as a kid and hates it now. This IS a fun thread.
hated coconut when I was younger because it stuck in the back of my throat
luv it now, even Mounds bars .. tho I can't eat mass produced chocolate bars any more b/o the indentured labor issue
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No cilantro at Chez Julia. It tastes like soapsuds to me. Why use that when there are so many other herbs for flavoring?
A propos of a lot of potentially polarizing ingredients/ food: if I don't mention they're "in there," most folks can't tell. Anchovy haters would be surprised by how many dishes I make that contain the toothsome little fishies. I just make sure they don't show in the finished dish.
I don't try to fool vegetarians but Sylvia Thompson has a great recipe for Tomato, Eggplant and Pepper Sauce in "Food and Friends" that includes anchovy. Nobody knows unless I tell them. Even without the anchovy it's a great sauce and feeds a crowd. Don't freeze it, tho, it gets mushy.
Forgot to add: to me cilantro is an "open window" smell, so clean and fragrant.
I'm internally polarized about peanuts. Love peanut butter and the nuts themselves. Even like peanut butter cups. But I can. not. eat. a peanut butter cookie. Will spit one out if accidentally taken for a sugar cookie. And dear god don't put them on an ice cream sundae! Can't eat that either. Walnuts belong there, not peanuts.
And zucchini--disgusting spongy texture and yuck/bland flavor. Love almost all other vegetables to distraction, except okra. Love cilantro--made a killer cilantro pesto this summer. Anchovies rock.
Okra seems to be a theme here. Contest material?
NOOOOOOOOOOOO.... NO OKRA themes PLEEAASE!!
synopsis: Okra, Cilantro, banana, anchovy, cephalopods, peanuts, stinky cheese, coconut, licorice, sushi...
I despise beets with a passion. And I love goat cheese. It gets under my skin because they're paired together so frequently. I get so mad because chefs take such a beautiful product like goat cheese and taint it with beets! They just taste too earthy to me I guess. Like dirt.
I don't like pears either. I think they're way too gritty. The texture just rubs me the wrong way.
pierino is a trusted source on General Cooking and Tough Love.
Okay, Pierino is the 600 pound omnivore in the room. He eats everything (even though he actually weighs in at about 140). Okra, cilantro, anchovies, organ meats, and the smelliest cheeses you can find---bring it! Maybe not all at the same time but we'll eat 'em. Oh yeah, and hog maw too. We will agree that cilantro is not an acquired taste, it does seem to be a genetic thing. Fortunately we're not afflicted. What bugs us is when people refuse to eat something they've never tasted just because it happens to be a pig's ear, a thymus gland or a squid. Squid by the way are very easy to clean.
I consider myself a prettty good eater but as I was reading your comment I realized that weird meats are difficult for me. For many years, I had trouble with rabbit because I couldn't get the image of a bunny, specifically a bunny on the cover of one of my Little Golden books, out of my mind. Got over it testing a paella recipe for food52 last year, altho I still felt sad looking at its little limbs before cooking them.
Could not think about eating a guinea pig in Ecuador. Etc.
Oh, and we must add that we won't serve bagged, triple washed anything to guests because of the potential food poisoning risks which have been adequately exposed.
Amen to everything, pierino.
For some reason, my husband is hostile to pine nuts. I love them and think he was served some rancid pine nuts in his past.
I have no idea why people are either lovers or haters of eggplant! I grew up in an Italian household and eggplant was very common and I love it But as an adult - and PARTICULARLY since I moved to the west coast - I have met more eggplant haters than I ever would have thought! I'm not talking about mild dislike, I'm talking HATERS!! I have one friend who will actually nearly gags at the sound of the word...and she claims to not have had a "bad experience" with it...she just can't stand it!
i still find that grown men (my dad for one) shy away from green vegetables. they'll eat them, maybe it's not polarizing, but for something like swiss chard, it needs to be presented with other foods and cooked to a proper texture; also raw vegetables need to be in the right format for a lot of people (cabbage should be very finely shredded for a lot of people, broccoli, cauliflower, etc. vegetables need at least a light dressing or better yet a blanch-and-dress)
You are so right, R! I forgot how much time I spent sneaking green vegetables into recipes for my Dad after Mom passed. If he knew it was anything but carrots and peas, he wasn't interested.
chocolate eclairs. chucked one up when I was about 7. Haven't had one since.
Back to Sam the SPAM, you could try out my Tiki Taco Tuesday recipe which actually turned out pretty well. One of the residual effects of WWII in Hawaii (apart from blown up stuff at the bottom of Pearl Harbor) is a local infatuation with SPAM. Even though I hate visiting Honolulu they actually do some pretty cool stuff with what is otherwise a godawful product. I'm just preparing for the day when I might have to live off it and MRE's like the new caffinated jerky.
Pierino, I have a good friend who grew up in Hawaii and owns, to me, the best restaurant within 500 miles, and he loves to tell SPAM stories. On another thread, I told a story about force-feeding calamari to my students in the first week of each session. They'll all swear they hate it, whether they have ever tasted it or not. I use Canned's Pan Roasted Calamari Salad with Tomatoes and Avocadoes because it's fast and the flavors are intense and familiar except of course for the calamari. By the end of the week, they're all converts to the second law of the kitchen: ATE - always taste everything. First law? Kill no one.
My Dad loved Spam. He was a WWII vet. He liked it fried with potatoes, cold in sandwiches and something called Spam salad. He like to eat it with his brothers and they told WWII stories. They were all in the Pacific, I think because they were all second generation German. Never developed a taste for it myself. And I do have friends who like Spam pizza with pineapple.
And I love huckleberries picked in the mountains of Montana, especially when we pick them. Some people think they are too bitter - makes no sense to me.
I hate olives. Husband loves them. I can't even kiss him afterward because of the residue taste. Gross!
This is still a great thread, thanks SKK!
I'm surprised no one mentioned Miracle Whip, but then again that's a not really food.
Although I love it, there are too many people I know who can't stand cumin. I don't understand it at all!
I have found that lots of people don't like lamb. Moreover, I don't think most people even think about it because when I invite new people to dinner I always ask: "Food allergies or aversions I should be aware of when preparing the menu?" They will either tell me something specific (peanuts, dairy, 'we're vegetarians') or "oh no, we like everything". But once I say "Great, I've wanted to make X lamb dish for a while now" they get silent or change their tune.
In another setting some one once said, " Who even eats lamb?" wow
I absolutely can't stand the taste of goat cheese.
okra seems to gross people out, but i love it...pickled; in gumbo; fried - its all good!
Rainbow cookies or seven layer cookies. I love them and make them often, but I find people either hate them or love them. I suspect the haters have had flavorless, dry ones that seems to appear in every deli in NY. Made correctly, they are amazing!
Personal hatred: cucumber and raw celery.Crowd dividers: anchovies, olives.I would erradicate cucumber from the planet the stench is that strong.
Not a fan of cabbage, guava and green olives! Love artichokes, black olives, spring onions, fenugreek leaves. I can imagine why so many hate okra.. But, I do like if it is fried and sprinkled with curry powder... I have a friend who belongs to southern India, and she hates bananas.. Bananas are staple to the south of India... Btw I love cilantro and basil...
Don't like bananas either, hate cilantro but like coriander, go figure
Don't like raw tomatoes either, they have to be cooked! Absolutely!
My five siblings and I all hate coconut!
Definitely hate cilantro, love lemon
I was in China recently and had the unique displeasure of eating One Thousand Year Old Eggs (not really 1,000 years old, but aged for quite awhile in salt and ash). They are loved by the Chinese and hated by people who did not grow up eating them. Also, some Nordic foods, primarily some of their cured seafood, are strongly disliked by me.
Modica, Sicily had something for both of us.
Where to Eat in Modica, Sicily
30-Minute Chickpea Curry
What's New in the Neighborhood
Cooking on a Food Stamp Budget
The Hits Keep Coming