I remember, as a child, my Mom would serve us supper on full-sized dinner plates. (Do you call the evening meal dinner or supper? I’ve always wondered but..never mind it’s not important right now.) We were supposed to eat everything put in front of us. I remember there being dessert, too. It was the goal of the meal. Healthy meal training, right? If we didn’t eat everything on our plate we got punished, no dessert and having to sit there until it was gone which sometimes was hours. But, let’s be real, there are some foods we don’t like. I’ve read that some tastes are genetic and some are experiential. Even before we’re born, we swallow a lot of amniotic fluid and it has different tastes depending on what our mothers are eating. We get our first taste buds at 8 weeks of gestation. I read it in a great article online called: How Food Preferences Develop. I wonder what my Mom ate while she was pregnant with me.
My Mom served all the “healthy” veggies in the style of the time, which was usually boiled. Spinach was a slimy, but buttered and salted, pile of bitterness. It looked like the stuff that Popeye popped out of the tin and ate to beat the bad guy. It was very bitter to me. Mom also served peas, carrots, beets, green and wax beans, cauliflower, broccoli and brussels sprouts. My sister didn’t like peas and would hide them under the lip of her plate until her plate was clean. We never ratted on her because she was the baby at the time and knew all the naughty things we did. I love carrots, beets, peas and beans but the rest are icky to me. I don’t mind the stems of broccoli but the trees taste gross to me. I used to think it was because of the way the veggies were cooked but, as Mom started steaming them; serving them raw with dip and making them into salads; I still didn’t like the taste.
Then came the cilantro. With all the wonderful ethnic foods entering the scene I looked forward to new, very healthy, foods. But, cilantro destroyed a lot of it for me. Imagine a stir-fry with broccoli, shredded brussels sprouts, cauliflower seasoned with wonderful spices and cilantro. I couldn’t eat it. A tiny bit of cilantro in my salsa, OK, but any more than that I can’t handle it. And I can’t handle licorice much either but I love Thai food and it’s so healthy for me but Thai basil knocks me right off. I wondered what the hell was wrong with me but it turns out that I wasn’t the only one.
I now know some of it is in our genes. I thought I was just being anti-social about the cilantro thing but it turns out I have that gene. My kids call it a genetic disorder – Ha! The on-line article from The Salt, explained a lot of it for me. Love To Hate Cilantro? It’s In Your Genes And, Maybe In Your Head.
So, I’m trying to eat as I’m told. Lots of veggies, low fat, low salt and barely cook them to keep in all the goodness. I can handle some of the stuff like a little spinach now – in a salad with bacon dressing? As I said, I like stems of broccoli and they are spectacular peeled and thrown into the stir-fry. My family isn’t fond of them so they eat the trees and I get the stems. Sorry, not much cauliflower in my house except for the veggie plate and I allow others to have them all.
That’s all I have to say about veggies today. Enjoy a massive salad and have a big plate, dinner plate, of veggies and home-made salsa (where I get to not add cilantro but I like cumin, go figure). Be healthy!
Thanks for listening. ;D Diane
PS We eat off the luncheon plates now and can go back for more if we want. It works.