Foods you just don't understand.

I’ll come out and say I don’t like certain very popular foods. I happen to not like ham. I am also one of 11 people in the world who don’t like Italian food.

But at the same time, I understand why people like these kinda foods. When I taste them, my sensation says “no” but at an intellectual level, I understand that some people could like that sort of thing.

However, in some situations, I just have to throw my hands up and say, “I don’t get it.”

My example: I like pickled/brined foods. Olives, pickles, pickled eggs, stuff like that. I love it. And I also love beans in general. I can eat frijoles negros out of the can cold, and enjoy it.

So a friend suggested I try lupini beans which are beans, and are pickled in brine. And are apparently, according to Wikipedia, eaten as a snack food.

And I just don’t get it. These things are really bad. The beans themselves have no taste. It’s just salt. All salt. Each bean is just a matrix to contain salt. That’s it. You might as well just ingest salt and water.

It has no point. Have you ever tasted a food and thought, “there’s no reason why this should exist?”

Belgian waffles.

The flavor of mint. Even the smell of it will make me gag. If I actually taste it, I WILL, hurl. Cant’ tell you why… just is.

Raw oysters. I have this suspicion in the back of my head that NOBODY really likes these things. I suspect they only eat them to show off in front of others. Like “hey look what I can do. I can suck down this bile of phlegm and pretend to love it!”

Alright “Steve-o” way to go dude.

What’s not to get? It’s a fluffy waffle with lots of stuff on it. It usually has fruit, for crying out loud. Who doesn’t love sweetened syrupy fruit?

Anyway: Canned creamed corn. I won’t offer an opinion on home-made creamed corn, as I’ve never had it, but canned creamed corn is just disgusting. It’s cloyingly sweet overlaid on bland and the only thing you can possibly use it for is something like corn fritters where you work like hell to remove most of the creamed corn flavor.

Have you ever tried a good smoked ham? I don’t much like regular ham either, but smoked ham is nomnomnom.

Licorice and twizzlers. Even worse - licorice twizzlers. shudder
I can’t believe people can consume that stuff. It’s like chewing TV cables, just more disgusting.

Also - very strong alcoholic drinks. I enjoy the occasional beer or wine, but can’t imagine how someone can drink pure whisky or vodka. How can they like it? It’s a mystery. It smells and burns like nail polish remover.

Most other foods I can totally understand.

I second this. I recall on an episode of Gilligan’s Island the Howells were looking in a bed of oysters for something and Thurston had buried Lovey in a pile of oysters. Lovey says, “And to think I spent 20 years learning to like these”

I don’t see how anyone REALLY likes them.

Canned Mushrooms

All kinds of mushrooms. To me they look gross, they smell worse, and their texture and taste is vile.

I also agree about strong alcohol. I took a long time to become accustomed to white wine, and red is still just a tad too much for me. Straight alcohol - blurgh.

Any canned vegetable. Of course fresh is best, but for god’s sake, frozen is a million times better than canned. I don’t understand why canned veggies (sorry. VEGETABLES) even exist.

I used to discuss two food concepts:

  • Stopgap Foods: sure, when we were hunter gatherers, we scrabbled and compromised, but for those of us living in Consumer America, we don’t have to anymore. But some folks just couldn’t let go - that was my working hypothesis for the continued existence of Brussel Sprouts.

  • Tapiocaphobia: aka, fear of unknown food textures. Coined subconsciously when I was told as a four-year-old that the little things in the tapioca were fish eyes (thanks, random old guy). The reason I can’t eat heavily cooked eggplant and am stunned anyone can.

Okra qualifies on both counts. Who said we could eat that stuff?

Yeah, texture is a biggie for me. Raw carrots? LOVE 'em! Cooked carrots? <shudder>


Brussels sprouts are mainly bad when they’re overcooked into a mushy, sulfurous mess. Overcooking doesn’t do any vegetables any favors, but it seems brussels sprouts fare especially badly.

How could I have forgotten Okra?

Crab and lobster. I know that people rave about them and say that they’re delicious, but they are bottom dwelling scavenger spiders with claws and eyestalks. I just don’t get how people can go and pay upwards of $100 for someone to boil a giant sea insect so that they can then rip it apart with their bare hands and slurp down it’s solidified bug sinews. That’s fucking gross.

Also, smelly cheese. Ok, I get that it’s classic and has been around for a long time, but we’ve gotten much better at making cheese since then and there’s no longer any reason to eat moldy pus that smells like a gym shoe threw up on a hobo’s balls.

Yeah, this. I hated Brussels Sprouts up until about a year ago, when I broke down and bought some fresh ones because (1) I’d never seen fresh ones before, only frozen and (2) Mr. Athena kept telling me he liked them and wanted them sometime.

I took the time to figure out a good way to cook them, and I gotta tell you, they are delicious. WAY better than I’d expected - some of my favorite veggies nowadays. But I have overcooked them at times, and they’re disgusting. If they get mushy, they’re inedible.


I first tried the sprouts of Brussels many years ago and gagged, swearing they will never pass my lips again.

But just recently I ran across a recipe that I tried and they were freaking awesome. The recipe involves tossing them in olive oil then roasting them in the oven with a drizzle of maple syrup & balsamic vinegar and a sprinkle of bacon bits.

They were very well received