Hey folks, I wanted to share this enlightening story with you that parallels greatly with my culinary journey. This story highlights one of the main reasons I started Bon Appétit Y’alls Pantry Picks. To introduce unique and creative items that will influence one to look at food differently. It’s a little bit of a read, but a very relatable story for many. Is this your story too? I hope you enjoy.
I grew up eating typical American fare. I thought that I was an adventurous eater, because I loved Mexican food (Taco Bell) and Chinese food (sweet and sour chicken). Oh, the sweet bliss of ignorance.
When I was around 14 years old, my grandmother took me with her on a road trip. We enjoyed doing yard-sales together, so as a birthday gift, she and I went on the 127 yard sale. I can’t remember the exact length, but it is known as the world’s longest yard sale and spans multiple states. When we hit the end of the trip, we detoured a bit to met one of her friends that lived outside a small Amish community. In the Amish, community, there was a shop that sold fresh bread, pies, handmade candies, ice-cream, and cheese.
My grandmother became absolutely giddy when she saw the cheese display and immediately started checking out the samples. I didn’t see what the big deal was, because to me, cheese was cheese. I “knew” what cheese tasted like, but my sphere only included parmesan dust, shredded cheese blend, pizza cheese (mozzarella), and individually wrapped slices. My grandmother noticed my indifference and handed me a white cheese cube on a toothpick. I’m pretty sure I rolled my eyes, but she was persistent that I try it.
It. Was. Wonderful. I don’t know which cheese it was, but it rocked my very small world. I ended up trying all of the different samples and bought a lot of it to bring home for my parents and sister. Unfortunately, the cheese didn’t make it, because my grandmother and I ended up eating all of it on the ride home. From that moment forward, I began to truly become an adventurous eater. I stopped being so narrow minded and started playing around with spices in the kitchen. Everywhere I go, I love try the local food. I’ve had beignets in New Orleans, pizza in New York, bibimbap in S. Korea, Hainanese chicken in Hainan, China, and so much more.
But it probably never would have happened if my grandmother hadn’t been so persistent about a tiny white cheese sample.”
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