My daughter is an awesome eater. She always has been. We have a rule in our house that no one has to clean their plate, but you must at least try a little bit of everything offered. Because of this she eats (and likes) broccoli, salad, all fruits, sushi, grilled tuna or salmon and a lot of other healthy offerings. She does not like chips, potatoes or heavily fried things. I envy her taste buds. I even remember once, when she was two and we were traveling to Florida, we stopped in a Wendy's and I got a potato with broccoli and cheese. She systematically picked off all of my broccoli and ate it. A mother at another table with two kids very loudly pointed out that "that baby is eating broccoli!" as her two kids stuffed another fry into their mouths. The mom really made it seem as if E was doing something wrong.
However, I am not knocking bad eating habits. Chrysalis and I have put away more goopy cheese and potatoes than should be allowed in a human body. My go to comfort food is nachos or mashed potatoes. I have slowly had to retrain my lousy eating habits. But when I observe E, it makes me think about my own upbringing.
When I was an elementary student, my favorite thing to take for lunch was a sandwich. But not just any sandwich. This sandwich consisted of salami, pickles and ketchup on white bread. That's it. I ate that almost every day for a year. Occasionally I would switch it out for a brunsweiger sandwich, another favorite. E has never had either of these meats and would never have had bologna if my mom hadn't given it to her..once. She didn't like it, thankfully.
Another thing I remember eating was City Chicken. Now, this was really weird to me. City chicken is meat skewered on a stick, soaked in milk, breaded and then baked. I remember liking it, but I always thought it was chicken. When I asked my mom one day why she called it City Chicken she told me it was because it was made from veal! I have never made veal...isn't it expensive? I can't figure out why we ate it so much when we were so poor. But I have to say, I have never found anyone else who knows what it is.
Then my grandma would make porcupine. For years I thought I was eating real porcupine until I grew old enough to know that there is no such thing as a Pennsylvania porcupine. It is a Polish dish of ground beef, rice and tomato sauce all rolled into one. I don't remember liking it that much, but it could have been because I was afraid of choking on a quill.
There was something else my grandmother made...milkshakes. I hated her milkshakes and she always made me drink one whenever I arrived at her house (as if I wasn't overweight enough as a child.) The thing is, the milkshakes were made with one raw egg (from HER chickens) and marshmallows. NOT marshmallow cream or flavoring, marshmallows. Have you ever tried to swallow a milkshake with raw egg and the added chunkiness of gooey marshmallows? It's making me a little queasy just typing this.
All of this is brought on by a squirrel story I heard a few days ago. Tune in tomorrow for the next episode of Southern Victuals!