2009: Eggs & Yogurt

For those of you who are not familiar with my past, I would like to share a few tidbits.  1.) I had my first salad when I was 19 and it was only because I was working at Tossed. They gave you a free salad after your shift. As a poor college student, a free meal is a free meal. 2.) When I eat scrambled eggs (rarely), the ketchup to egg ratio is greatly out of balance.  It basically looks like a bloody massacre on a plate, with a sprinkle of very well done eggs. 3.) I don’t do fish or any sort of sea creatures.

Since meeting my husband in 1999, I have branched out culinary.  He literally taunted me till I tried something new.  The first month that we were together, I was at his apartment and he offered me some Bulgarian feta cheese (сирене).  At that time, my cheese consisted of 2 sorts, “white american” and “yellow american”.  Reluctantly, I tried it and immediately thought it was gross.  The texture was crumbly and the taste was salty.

In August 2001, Angel and I spent a month in Bulgaria.  This was my first trip to his homeland and every meal included feta, it was an ingredient in almost half of the dishes prepared or just placed on the table cut into cubes and sprinkled with a little bit of red pepper.

Having no choice but to eat what was prepared, I learned to love feta… especially on a Shopska (шопска салата).  The love was so strong, that we named our Jack Russell “Feta”.

Feta taking a shower!

Over the last 10 year, I have slowly begun to conquer my own culinary frontiers, which brings me to reflect on 2009. Here are some of the barriers that have been broken:

I ate plain yogurt for the first time.  Sally and I were in Greece and she was looking for some Total Yogurt and Honey pots, which are known as Fage in the US.  I bought some to try and thought they were ridiculously delicious.  After they ran out, I tried to recreate the experience with plain yogurt and jam, which then lead me to adding muesli/ granola and now, my favorite breakfast food.

Eggs are a huge taboo in my family.  My father detests eggs and anything that he consciously knows to contain eggs. This stems from his father, but the egg-phobia is pretty well ingrained into my father and my uncle.  As I mentioned earlier, I have eaten ketchup and eggs, but that was the extent of my egg experience.  This year at the Slow Food dinner, they served a salad with quail eggs.  I didn’t want to seem different because I wasn’t eating my eggs or give the impression that I didn’t like my salad, so I tried them.  The result: Eeh!  They didn’t taste egg-y, but they didn’t really taste like anything either.

Working at the Hilton, has also forced me to try new things, not because they hold a gun to my head, but if you want to be a good cook, you need to know how the food you’re preparing tastes.  Common sense really. Last week, I had to prepare deviled eggs with tuna as a hors d’oeuvre. I made the mixture as instructed, but when it came time to season it, I struggled with myself internally and then decided to not be a “wussy” and taste the yolk-tuna mixture.  Again: Eeh!  The taste was really nothing special, but it wasn’t gross.  I continued to taste till I felt satisfied with my creation.  I then offered some to one of the other chef’s in the kitchen, just to make sure I was on the right track.  She replied that she doesn’t eat fish.  I just chuckled to myself for a moment.

Next year, my husband wants me to try his favorite soup… tripe.  Here is an excerpt of our last conversation about the subject.

Angel: Have you ever been in a barn, where they keep animals.
Casey: Yeah?
Angel:  Well, tripe soup taste likes that smells!

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Author: caseyangelova

Eating, Gardening & Living in Bulgaria www.caseyangelova.com

7 thoughts on “2009: Eggs & Yogurt”

  1. wow, casey, i can't believe you're training to be a chef and have so many things you don't like to eat. but, then i see you're trying to overcome that. i believe julia c had that and we all know what became of her on pbs.

    here is a short list of what you probably have not tired and might have difficult time eating, but you should try when you get a chance. beer goes really well with most of such food.

    -natto- sticky fermented beans usually eaten over rice or as sushi rolls http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Natt%C5%8D you might like this video demo how to eat it http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T_u63CwsdMA

    -sea urchin sushi aka uni, here with raw quail egg http://www.yelp.com/biz_photos/DpZYSh3CLj2A1B5jCVXvfw?select=GNm_kUUJVPI36mXsLGH4qw i have not tried sea urching with raw egg yet, but would like to, even though my stomach gets upset when i eat raw egg
    -any other jp food with good raw egg on it, eg. curry rice, beef bowl…
    -mentaiko http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mentaiko over rice or made into sauce for pasta
    -salty, spicy squid – shiokara (eaten with rice in very small amounts when you have leftover rice having eaten other foods) – or some sort of fusion which i tried here http://www.flickr.com/photos/perke/4196822473/in/set-72157623026307932/
    -squid blue ink pasta

    but then again you're in europe, so you should probably focus on all sorts of offal and livers, tartars, pork belly…whatever else local

    you made some great points as always to make me comment!

    tonight i'm making mentaiko pasta. kosuke is now searching for recipes in japanese, even though english language recipes are sufficient.

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  2. I am actually getting much better. There are few things that I haven't tried and they consist mostly of organ meats, which I am not really ready for… yet. I am also hesitant about raw eggs, not because of salmonella, but the sleaziness of the texture.

    Thanks for the suggestions. I loved the Natto video. It looked cool, plus it was informative.

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  3. Good luck with the tripe. It's just about the only thing I can't bring myself to eat. It used to cause huge arguments between me and mum when I was a kid. Happy New Year by the way.

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  4. Chris – I don't think I will be able to eat it, but I am using 2010 to psych myself up. Thinking yummy thoughts. Does your mom still bust your chops about the tripe?

    Happy New Year to you too!!!

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  5. I used to feel the same way about tofu the way you feel about eggs.
    Since I moved to the Philippines, tofu is pretty much a common ingredient here, just like in most Far Eastern cuisine. I had no choice but “learn” to eat it.

    Don't get me started on tripe and all things offal. I've managed to get myself to eat tofu, frog legs, escargot but not organ meats.

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  6. I am new to tofu too, but I like it. My friend has a great Taiwanese recipe that is a tofu-like dessert that I will share. I ate two servings before I even knew what it was.

    I have eaten tongue, brains, frog's legs, escargot, but the rest… liver, kidney and tripe egh!!!

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