I love food, but I only love food that I love. I was a very finicky child but I loved my grandmother's cooking. When my class went on field trips, my grandmother had to pack my lunch because I did not want to eat anything that was unfamiliar to me. I was never curious of what my classmates' were eating. My 15 individually wrapped marinated chicken drummettes kept me satisfied. In fact, I was the one whom the other kids wanted to trade their lunches with.
My grandmother had to get up early to prepare, cook, wait for the drummettes to cool, and wrap them. She did not mind though. She was more than willing to go out of her way to accommodate the only grandchild.
Tomato is my mom's favorite food. She eats them like apples. I remember when I was 4 or 5, I saw my mom sitting in our courtyard in China, munching away on a tomato, commenting on how delicious it was. When I saw her eating the red tomato like it was an apple, I imagined in my mind how it would be sweet and crispy, like an apple. Of course I asked for a bite, but my senses went into shock because it was the complete opposite of what I had imagined. The texture, the taste, and the smell were so unexpected, I spat it right out. To this day, tomatoes and I still have not become friends.
On a side note, McDonald's does a great job of keeping the taste of their menu items consistent. I know because
I've ordered them from McDonald's in Los Angeles, Dallas, Saint Louis,
Houston, Austin, Singapore, Hong Kong, and Beijing. If T hadn't stopped
me, I would've confirmed my faith in McDonald's Filet-O-Fish in Taiwan
and Shanghai as well.
I've learned to take a middle-of-the-path attitude with food. Nowadays, I still tend to gravitate towards food I am familiar with. New stuff, however, reminds me of my father's teaching, and I am no longer resistant to trying it. I see trying new food not as a challenge or fulfillment of curiosity, but more as a form of respect to our good fortune of being in a country with an abundance of food.