24 August, 2008

The Omnivore's Hundred List - An Entertaining Diversion

Over at the UK food blog Very Good Taste, author Andrew Wheeler has come up with an admittedly arbitrary list of one hundred things a taste of which all omnivores should experience. I enjoy exercises like this one, and so here is my take on Mr. Wheeler's list.

If you'd like to participate on your own blog, here are the guidelines Mr. Wheeler has set forth:
  1. Copy the list into your blog or journal, including these instructions.
  2. Bold all the items you’ve eaten.
  3. Cross out any items that you would never consider eating.
  4. Optional extra: Post a comment at www.verygoodtaste.co.uk linking to your results.
And now, without any further ado - but with an occasional comment thrown in - is my annotated Omnivore's Hundred List:
  1. Venison
  2. Nettle tea
  3. Huevos rancheros
  4. Steak tartare
  5. Crocodile
  6. Black pudding - Well, kishka - the Polish version of black pudding, so it counts.
  7. Cheese fondue
  8. Carp
  9. Borscht
  10. Baba ghanoush
  11. Calamari
  12. Pho
  13. PB&J sandwich
  14. Aloo gobi
  15. Hot dog from a street cart
  16. Epoisses
  17. Black truffle
  18. Fruit wine made from something other than grapes
  19. Steamed pork buns
  20. Pistachio ice cream
  21. Heirloom tomatoes
  22. Fresh wild berries
  23. Foie gras
  24. Rice and beans
  25. Brawn, or head cheese
  26. Raw Scotch Bonnet pepper - Not something I'd recommend, really. I did it to see if they were really as hot as claimed. They are. You can take my word for it.
  27. Dulce de leche
  28. Oysters
  29. Baklava
  30. Bagna cauda
  31. Wasabi peas
  32. Clam chowder in a sourdough bowl - New England clam chowder is one of the great classic seafood dishes. Sourdough bowls are IMNSHO pretentious, twee, and so very 1980's.
  33. Salted lassi
  34. Sauerkraut
  35. Root beer float
  36. Cognac with a fat cigar - I've also had beer and Parodis, LOL. By the way, fat cigars and cognac can also be enjoyed independently of one another.
  37. Clotted cream tea
  38. Vodka jelly/Jell-O
  39. Gumbo
  40. Oxtail
  41. Curried goat
  42. Whole insects - I have eaten crickets and toasted mealworms, neither of which were enjoyable beyond the amusing disgust it inspired in observers. To be honest, the idea of eating insects is rather repulsive to me, which is illogical - after all, I enjoy lobsters, shrimp/prawns, and crabs, which are closely related.
  43. Phaal
  44. Goat’s milk
  45. Malt whisky from a bottle worth £60/$120 or more
  46. Fugu - Never had the opportunity, but I would jump at it in a heartbeat.
  47. Chicken tikka masala
  48. Eel - Although I have eaten it in the past, this is the only item on this list which I would currently never consider eating. The backstory to this is disgusting and personal enough that I don't care to share it here (but may, someday.)
  49. Krispy Kreme original glazed doughnut - They disgust me.
  50. Sea urchin
  51. Prickly pear
  52. Umeboshi
  53. Abalone
  54. Paneer
  55. McDonald’s Big Mac Meal
  56. Spaetzle
  57. Dirty gin martini
  58. Beer above 8% ABV
  59. Poutine
  60. Carob chips
  61. S’mores
  62. Sweetbreads
  63. Kaolin - Kaolin sounds like an exotic ingredient, does it not? Yet I am willing to bet that nearly every American over the age of 30 has consumed it, because it was one of the active ingredients in the original formulation of the over-the-counter anti-diarrheal medication Kaopectate (kaolin + pectin, see?) which many of us were given as children.
  64. Currywurst
  65. Durian
  66. Frogs’ legs
  67. Beignets, churros, elephant ears or funnel cake
  68. Haggis
  69. Fried plantain
  70. Chitterlings, or andouillette
  71. Gazpacho
  72. Caviar and blini
  73. Louche absinthe - In an interesting coincidence, over the past few weeks I have been actively seeking out absinthe in order to experience it now that it's legal once again to sell it in the US. Perhaps I will be editing this entry in the future to include it.
  74. Gjetost, or brunost
  75. Roadkill - Yes, in fact. I was the lucky recipient of the undamaged sections of a roadkill deer which was hit by a car and killed, then immediately dressed out as if it had been traditionally hunted. The venison was delicious.
  76. Baijiu
  77. Hostess Fruit Pie
  78. Snail
  79. Lapsang souchong
  80. Bellini
  81. Tom yum
  82. Eggs Benedict
  83. Pocky
  84. Tasting menu at a three-Michelin-star restaurant. - Someday, perhaps.
  85. Kobe beef
  86. Hare
  87. Goulash
  88. Flowers
  89. Horse
  90. Criollo chocolate
  91. Spam
  92. Soft shell crab
  93. Rose harissa
  94. Catfish
  95. Mole poblano
  96. Bagel and lox
  97. Lobster Thermidor - Once, and once was enough. I much prefer lobster in the rough.
  98. Polenta
  99. Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee
  100. Snake
So there you have it. I've missed out on twelve items on the list (primarily of Indian cuisine because I am not very familiar with it,) and the only item that repulses me so thoroughly I won't consider eating is one that I formerly consumed before being put off of them perhaps forever.


Maggie said...

I'm so impressed! Your's is the most complete list I've seen so far.

Like several other women, I immediately thought of facial masks for tasting Kaolin. I didn't even think about Kaopectate. It's interesting to know where it's an ingredient in something you are supposed to consume.

Anonymous said...

Hey Dave-

re: Eel, sorry to "hear" about your bad experience, but I'd encourage you to try Unagi (freshwater eel) Nigiri (sushi).

When I'm introducing someone to sushi, this is one of my go-to items- I generally wait to tell them it's eel until after they've tasted it, which I generally describe as "fishy bacon". It is cooked (typ. broiled) and should come with a rich and smoky sauce, and is best enjoyed IMO w/ minimal additional soy and/or wasabi.

Please note this has a very different flavor than saltwater eel (Anago), which I don't like at all...


I discovered your blog recently while googling for Sparkling Ice (a new discovery of mine which I really like); I've been working my way thru your older posts...