March 07, 2009
Every once in a while, while eating at a Mexican restaurant, I would taste something bad. Subtle, but soapy sometimes, and other times almost like that taste chocolate gets when it goes stale.
Then one day, when I was 17 I had to make a Spanish meal for class. My sister was helping me and we decided to put a cilantro garnish on some tomato bread that we made. It looked beautiful. We tasted it and thought there was some mistake. Surely the tube had been full of soap? We were totally in agreement about this, but thought it was a defect in that particular package.
Then I went to Costa Rica. Suddenly the soap was in everything! Eventually I realized that it was cilantro. For the rest of the trip to Costa Rica, I ordered garlic with everything, because garlic is my favourite spice and the taste of it /almost/ overpowered the cilantro flavour. When I was living with a host family there, I felt bad asking them to make things specially for me, so I would normally make my own cilantro free dishes. If I turned my back, though, they would scoop a few of the foul green leaves into my rice. They just didn't understand...