Particularly if it looks like this?
I was in Publix today - looking for some fun fruit to put in Schecky's lunchbox (I don't know about him, but I'm tired of the same old watermelon,/strawberry/apple that I've been putting in there lately...) I was reaching for some raspberries (on sale this week!) when I saw these... things! What in the world?
There was no sign, no sticker, no nothing to give me any information about them. So I gingerly picked one up and took it back to the produce associate and asked, basically "What in the world?" Very helpfully, she replied "I don't know. You want to try it? I'll give it to you as a sample."
Honestly, my first thought was a "Hell to the no" that would have made Whitney Houston proud. But then I remembered, Bubba and I are always telling Schecky that it's important to try new foods. You don't have to like it, you don't even have to finish it, but it's important to try new things - how else will you know what you do and don't like...*
Still, I am hesitant. Face it, whatever this thing is, it's U-G-L-Y. And frankly, it looks a bit scary. I ask the produce lady if she's tried it, and she looks at me as if to say "are you kidding?" I decide to bite the bullet, or rather, the scary fruit...
She gets a knife and splits the rind. (peel? husk? I don't even know what to call it) Oh my God - it gets weirder. Nestled inside is this squidgy, gooey looking sphere. It's definitely slimy, and very gelatinous looking. It looks like nothing so much as a big gross eyeball. Is it too late to back out now?
I realize that now all three produce ladies have gathered around me, and are anxiously waiting for me to try it. Guess it's too late. "Remember," I think to myself, "It's important to try new things..."
I slurp the orb up out of its shell, and I bite down on it very carefully. I'm glad, because there is a big old fibrous pit in the middle of it. The flesh is very juicy, and yes, a little slimy. It's not as off-putting as I feared. It's sweet, and it tastes a little bit familiar...what is it???
Then it dawns on me - it tastes a lot like a grape. A green grape, that has been peeled so that you're left with just the sweet gooshy inside part. Really, it's kind of nice.
Also - upon reflection, it seemed a perfect treat for an eight year old boy. I mean really - you start of with this evil looking spiked thing, and then you open it up and there's an eyeball inside? And you can eat it and it tastes good?
So I bought a handful**, and brought them home. And they were every bit the hit I hoped they would be! Schecky was every bit as grossed out and excited as I had thought.
But the mystery remains... does anyone know what the heck these are?
(And Schecky's shoes are not usually up on the counter. I had announced at the beginning of the school year that after a summer of no-sock-wearing, his Keens were too stinky to wear anymore. Today I was being all domestic goddess-y and I was thinking what a shame it was that he couldn't wear them anymore. I threw them in the washer with a big load of towels and bleached the heck out of everything and hoped for the best. (But I figured, if I ruined them, no big whoop - they were too stinky to wear anyway) Anyhow, they came out intact, and are now stinky-foot free! I set them up on the counter to dry, not realizing just how unappetizing shoes on the counter look. But, for what it's worth, they are really, really clean shoes. And once I saw this picture, I moved them to a window sill to finish drying....)
*As an aside, I have to say that Scheck is a fantastic eater. He is very interested in food, and where it came from. I take for granted how great an eater he is, but when I think back to my days as a kid, I am sure that I wouldn't have tried half the stuff that he not only has tried, but likes! Don't get me wrong, he loves his Mac&Cheese and FrenchFries as much as any other kid, but how many kids do you know list "cuttlefish" as one of their favorite foods?
You'll be glad to know that since it's darn near impossible to find a restaurant in America (or at least the Southern states) that serves cuttlefish, he has decided that octopus is an acceptable substitute. Would you have eaten that as a child? I wouldn't have...
**The checkout process was long and somewhat funny. Turns out the cashier really hates it when you try to buy food that no one can name. Turns out that after they call over not one, not two, but three managers - that third manager will get fed up with the whole process and announce that the weird fruit is free... WooHoo, free weird fruit...