Never tried Mexican or Chinese food ?

Never exposing your children to Chinese or Mexican food ?
Would it be out of line to suggest that parents should at least encourage their
children to try new and different foods ?
Based upon this thread:

I can somewhat understand not having tried one of them, but to have never tried Mexican or Chinese just seems odd to me.
Don’t people point out different foods to their children and encourage them to try something new ? I do not expect my children to enjoy everything that I enjoy, but I do encourage them to try different things.
If they don’t like it , fine, but why no culinary curiosity in others ?

I hate olives and anchovies, but at least I can say that I have tried them.

The OP of that thread explained that her mom didn’t like Chinese food so they never had it. I don’t know where they would be dining such that the mom could encourage them to try it - if they never went to a Chinese place.

Seems to me that, if certain foods aren’t enjoyed by your family of origin, you check it out after you’re on your own.

I don’t think there’s any onus on the family to make sure you’ve tried different ethnic foods. Maybe I misunderstand your point.

The OP in the thread you reference explained why, and several other posters chipped in with their own experiences. Is this not enough for you?

For me, a lack of culinary curiosity is the same as a lack of intellectual curiosity, I just do not understand it.
Probably best I had just started a thread about why people do not try new foods and did not refer to the other thread.

One of the nice things about a buffet is you have the opportunity to try new foods.

I am currently living in China, so maybe I am just more curious or adventurous than most :slight_smile:

Some people don’t have the opportunity as children, as demonstrated in the thread you linked., and are reluctant/nervous/shy/intimidated when they become adults. There’s nothing difficult about understanding this.

You are very special.


As long as they’re eating healthily and they like what they’re eating, who gives a damn?

Come to think of it, I haven’t given my kids Chinese food. My older daughter is allergic to soy, all legumes, and all nuts. Chinese restaurants look like one big danger zone to me. I could cook it myself, of course, but I don’t like most Chinese food ever since that episode in college. I’ll pick Indian every time, or Korean or Thai.

She’s an adventurous eater anyway, within the limits she has to live with.

Moving thread from IMHO to Cafe Society.

Well, my adventurous side ruined it for me.
I was about 10 or so, and in my small school in Illinois, we were talking about foreign foods. Mind you, this was decades ago and Illinois was not exactly a hotbed of local flavors.
So, on a trip to the grocery store with my mother, I convince her to buy me a can of burritos on the bottom shelf (the one and only can, that had probably been there since 1945).
She did, took it home, and warmed them up.
Nobody else in the family would try them. But being the brave, stubborn 10 yr old, I dove in and ate them.
Then I had my head in the toilet for several days - I don’t think I have ever been so sick in my life. Botulism? Salmonella? I have no idea - but I was one very, very sick puppy.
Ever since, I cannot get near a Mexican restaurant, let alone try the food, due to the odor of one of those ingredients. The minute I smell it, I feel nauseous and have to run to the restroom.
Let me tell ya - living 12 years in Los Angeles, and not being able to enter a Mexican restaurant is no easy feat. I missed many a birthday celebration, many office parties, many meetings, etc.
I tried - several times - but that one odor works makes it impossible for me to get near the food.
I love salsa, eat fajitas at home and am not a wimp with spicy foods - but again - there is one ingredient that has ruined it for me.

There are lots of places in the US where most Chinese restaurants are crap. Probably same for Mexican food, too.

I’m lucky in that I live in Silicon Valley, and we can get almost any good food we want. Kids are exposed pretty early to things like sushi, which I can imagine is a bit problematic in many parts of the country.

And considering how picky some kids can be, I can imagine parents wanting to have one less issue to deal with-- just give them the stuff you know they’ll eat. Plenty of time to explore other cuisines when they are adults and their tastes are more mature.

I grew up not eating Chinese or Mexican food. Even pizza was rare. Spaghetti was considered the most foreign thing we would normally eat. This is all because I lived way, way out in the sticks. Furthermore, my family was just barely scraping by, and we couldn’t afford to eat out except rarely. Now I eat all these things frequently. You reach a point when you don’t have to accept the situation you grew up with. You can choose to experience things that you have a chance to as a child.

That’s basically my theory. My husband will eat anything. And I mean anything. Tripe, brains, marrow, bugs… you name it, he’s eaten it. I’m sure he’ll encourage our kids to try anything from Mac and Cheese to chicharrones, from sandwiches to sushi. I’m a more picky eater, but at least I’ve tried the things I won’t eat. If our kids have lots of options to try, they’re more likely to find something they like.

My luck? The only foods our kid will eat are the ones I hate…

A… can… of burritos? Was it just burrito filling or was it actually complete burritos in a can? I can’t fathom why something like that would ever exist.

I’ve never heard of such a thing; but canned tamales are commonly stocked at most grocers. (The contents of these cans bear nearly no resemblance to actual tamales.)

Same here, right down to the spaghetti. That was considered our one foray into “ethnic food” in my house.

And I, too, am puzzled by the burrito in a can. That can’t be.

Oops - that should have been a can of Tamales…sorry, but as one who can’t get near any of it, I confused the two. Burittos, tamales - what do I know?
The can was literally at the bottom of the shelves, covered in dust…perhaps that should have been my first clue this wasn’t going to be a taste delight, but hey - I was about 10 and this was a small town in Illinois. We thought Velvetta was really good cheese.

Frankly that’s a myth, illogical, and incorrrect thinking. What do you think Mexican and Indian Children eat? Are their dietary needs and tastes/palate somehow magically different than American children? Exposing children to as many tastes and varied cuisine is the best way to do it. Any food prejudices that a child has are most likely environmental and conditioned by the parent.

Except that Chinese kids eat Chinese food every day*. It’s completely unrealistic to expect parents to prepare a bevy of ethnic cuisines for their toddlers so they’ll crave hot and sour soup at age 6. Kids get used to what they eat on a regular basis.

So, no, nothing mythological, illogical or incorrect about it.

*And they probably turn their noses up at mac and cheese.

Ahhhh… the caviar of processed foods! Con gusto!

DMark, the age of the can probably had little to do with their potability, I’m sure they were fine. The Cumin (Cominos) is probably your Medusa, there… in combo with a cheap cornmeal masa … the bile of the degustibus haunt.

Try Carnitas in Verde with flour tortillas and some frijoles con refritos, you might just rethink Mexican food…

Carnitas en salsa verde con frijoles refritos