The WordPress Daily Prompt from yesterday had a question that piqued my interest:
Are you a picky eater? Share some of your favorite food quirks with us (the more exotic, the better!).
I hate condiments. Specifically the wet ones: mustard, ketchup, relish, steak sauce, salad dressing, sour cream (when used as a condiment), sandwich spread, tartar sauce, cocktail sauce, chili sauce, and especially mayonnaise. The only ones I like are oil & vinegar and barbecue sauce. I’m okay with vinaigrette as a salad dressing, and with ingredients that are cooked into Chinese food. Everything else? Just yuk.
I can already hear the questions….
- Mayonnaise is just eggs, oil, and vinegar. You say you like oil & vinegar, and I would guess you like eggs. Why don’t you like mayonnaise?
- Ketchup is basically just tomatoes and vinegar. You like tomatoes, don’t you? So why not ketchup?
- Barbecue sauce is basically ketchup. How can you like one and not the other?
- How can you eat chicken fingers without honey mustard? A hamburger without mayonnaise? Cole slaw? Deli sandwiches without mayo and mustard? etc.
All right, let’s go down the list.
- Yes, I like eggs. Cooked eggs. Mayonnaise is raw egg yolks, oil, and vinegar. It goes bad in heat and/or sunlight, such as at a picnic, and wreaks havoc on the gastrointestinal system. And we all know what that means.
- Ketchup is more than just tomatoes and vinegar. I like sliced tomatoes with oil and vinegar on them. If ketchup tasted like that, I’d be fine with it. But it doesn’t.
- Barbecue sauce is made differently. Plus, it’s cooked onto the ribs.
- I simply ask that the condiments be left off the food, and don’t add them. Believe me, I don’t go hungry.
It’s easier to order food at fast-food places without the condiments now than it was in the past. Burger King started this back in the Seventies.
Wendy’s turned it into an exercise in combinatorics a few years ago, announcing that there were 256 different ways to get your burger. They have eight toppings, cheese, lettuce, tomato, onions, mustard, ketchup, mayonnaise, and my favorite, bacon, and you can choose any combination of them, including none of them. They had this campaign in the Eighties.
Eventually, McDonald’s had to follow suit. A good thing, too. Before then, if you ordered a hamburger without mustard, ketchup, and/or pickles, the kid behind the counter would roll his eyes and sigh dramatically, because you had just forced him to fill out a special request form and submit it to the guys in the kitchen. The kid then told you he would call when your order was ready. You’d wait and wait while all of your lunch partners ate, then they’d call and hand you a bag. You’d get it back to your table, where you’d discover that your burger had been given to someone else, and you got a burger with ketchup, mustard, and pickle anyway.
I don’t have trouble with the fast-food places anymore. Regular sit-down restaurants, on the other hand, will neglect to indicate on the menu that one or more condiments will be added to your food. Order something “plain,” and the server will tell you that’s how it comes, only when your food arrives, it’s not. Since, at many restaurants, your server will drop your food on the table and vanish without asking if everything’s all right, you have to wait until someone who can do something about it stops by your table. That could be half an hour or more.
It might seem like I’m just being fussy, but I don’t like condiments being slapped on my food without having the opportunity to say no.
I’ll bet one or more of you has this problem…