When I was a tiny, I thought it was disgusting: it was a suspicious pink hue, sort of jiggly, sort of slimy, and smelled weird.
But then came one memorable noon hour of eating a packed lunch with my Mom and Sister. They had bologna sandwiches, and I had my reliable PB &J sandwich. But for the first time in my life, it let me down: their bologna smelled scrumptious and much better than my slightly soggy PB&J. Something had changed, and being so young, I didn’t really know what. But I didn’t really care; from that day onward, I was happy to take that wobbly circle of meat and morph it into a savory delight with just some bread, cheese and condiments.
Now that I’m slightly wiser, I know a little about taste buds, and that as I age, my tastes change. And as any food lover knows, this is exciting.
Foods I once found unpalatable have turned delicious: bright crunchy bell peppers and pickles, flavor packed teas, exotic dishes from Morocco, Turkey, Egypt, Lebanon, and Thailand… all cuisine that “little me” would have regurgitated or at the very least, balked at. And as a cook for my own home, I even like to dabble in some intense spices to create hot, zesty dishes and I’m liking it. (I hear that as I grow older, my little taste buds will dull, so I’m looking forward to even more spice!)
Gone are the days when I wanted to eat macaroni and cheese and goldfish crackers for every meal. Gone are the days when the smell and texture of onions were declared “ewwwy.” I see many children now who only want to eat cheese or who are afraid to try a tomato, and I feel a little sorry for them. They are missing out on some incredible taste sensations. But I know that as they grow older, they too, will most likely learn what they are missing. Because, if they are like me, they will learn that changing taste buds is a little present that comes with growing older, making life a little more interesting and a little more (I’m going to be corny here) delicious.
Creator of Love, Auntie.