I was looking back over some of the past GMC posts and it occurred to me that even though everything here is about nostalgia, it’s been a long time since I did a nostalgic piece centered around a personal experience. By that I mean posts like:
So here we go: I think we all have certain foods that we like — or don’t like — because of childhood experiences. For example, I hate liver and onions – ugh – to the extent that it makes me shudder just to type the words. On the other hand, it’s a given that there are plenty of things we like because of fond memories, but I’d be willing to bet that most of us also have a very special type of favorite. Let’s call it the odd couple — an unusual pairing of favorite foods.
As spotty as my memory usually is, I can nevertheless remember that my school had a cafeteria in the basement, and — as strange as it might seem now — I liked it. I always looked forward to tromping down the stairs and getting in line, all the while trying to identify the aromas wafting through the air. It wasn’t that I didn’t eat well at home. My mom did a good job (with the exception of liver and onions – ugh) but somehow everything just seemed better at school.
That said, I’ll confess that I’ve forgotten most of the specifics about the food, but one strong memory has stuck with me to this day. Whenever they served chili con carne it was invariably accompanied by a peanut butter sandwich. That’s right, just peanut butter on white bread. It might have been served for added protein in lieu of a meatier chili, but the funny thing is that I grew to like it and even tried to insist on it at home — with mixed results, but that might have made it even cooler. And some 60+ years later I still crave a peanut butter sandwich whenever I have a bowl of chili, even though I always get funny looks from others.
An odd coupling to be sure, but I bet lots of other folks have strange food quirks from their childhood. What’s yours?