As a child I was always told, “Don’t say you don’t like it if you haven’t tried it.” I have to say, I was more open to trying strange foods back then than I am now. But then again who knows if I’d have put a bug in my mouth and munched on it when I was a kid… I certainly won’t do it now.
Back then I did eat quite a few things that I still enjoy, that most people find weird. Pickled herring, blood pudding, and sour pickled onions to name a few. One thing I’ve only recently had the opportunity to eat again because of Japanese sushi, that I haven’t had since I was a child is eel. My parent’s best friends, Dot and Bob, lived next door to us all my life growing up. Bob worked in downtown Toronto for the city and he knew a lot of different shop owners. One such place he used to frequent had fresh eels. And I’m talking really fresh… he brought them home live. I remember playing with them in the kitchen sink at his house. One time in particular, when Dot (who hated them) and I were alone, one jumped out of the sink and was writhing around on the kitchen floor. She screamed for me and I, four years old at the time, had the job of picking it up and putting it back in the sink. It’s no wonder I’m not afraid of snakes. And no, I didn’t get in trouble for playing with my food.
I haven’t seen a live one since, but I do still enjoy the flavour. If you’re looking for it in a sushi place, the Japanese word is unagi. Now I have a craving for sushi…
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