Shame Food

As I painfully admit in my SCRATCH draft, there are two particular foods I am embarrassed not to like: blue cheese and yolky eggs. My aversion to eggs is limited: I will happily mix and enjoy homemade aioli; I’m more than pleased to sneak finger-fulls of raw cookie dough; and I eat scrambled eggs—ketchup-dipped, lots of pepper—with great delight. And cheese of any sort except blue is good-grub (as are fungus foods like mushrooms and kombucha; fermented foods like sauerkraut and yogurt).

But here’s the part that stings: millions of non-foodie, taste-challenged plebians who can’t whip together a vinaigrette love these foods. I see them everywhere: ordering black-and-blue burgers for lunch; gobbling Maytag fondue with sweet potato chips at the bar; dousing their toast points and bacon in glistening yolk for brunch. Shame on me!

But there are foods I’m embarrassed to love as well—Peeps, for instance. Last week, half-price at $.49/package, I tried to hide four packages—two pucker pink, two anything-but-natural green—among my carrots, spinach, and celery and sneaked around avoiding A.) Anyone with dreadlocks B.) Those who would recognize me as the local spice artisan. Bingo! I gleefully decapitated two pink peeps as soon as I got in the car.

Peep love is simple: I do like my Peeps stale, but I never have them around long enough to get a good, chewy one going. Instead, I embrace the contrast of the neon sugar’s grit against the fluffy nothingness of peep-body. And I will not accept bunny, snowman, jack-o-lantern, or any shape other than true Peep. It’s in the way the tail curls, the i-like-my-body-when-it-is-with-your-body crease at the chin.

I’m coming to grips with my shame foods, from chicken-to-be to chicken-like-marshmallow. Share you shame foods, and we’ll offer a nice thanks-but-no-thanks together.

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