July 23, 2007
It was 2005, Chili's restaurant. Wow, what a great salad - Caribbean Chicken Salad. It sounded so good, fruit, veggies, chicken, all my favorites. My daughter and I shared it. We got a strange flavor occasionally, like eating nickels. (Okay - that is a little more than strange when you are eating a salad; it was actually a bit disturbing). I really liked the salad though, and we thought maybe they got some bad veggies, you know, like when the romaine tastes completely bitter. It isn't always that way, so we assumed it was something like that and got another salad a few months later to share for lunch. OBVIOUS this time that it wasn't a unique, bad veggie experience. Some bites were perfectly fine, other tasted like we'd taken in a full mouth of nickels all the way up into our noses!
It took some investigating, but we narrowed it to little green specks in the salad. Upon further investigation, we discovered this was cilantro. So, having identified the accosting ingredient, the next time we were ready and asked that the cilantro be skipped. Well, the cilantro is in the Pico de Gallo! So, we had them leave it off and voila! a grand dining experience. The salad is great, and doesn't miss the Pico. Unfortunately, it is not the only place the Pico is used in Chili's. So, we are careful. Funny, there wasn't any cilantro in the salsa.
I got a recipe for salsa that called for cilantro and decided to buy some good organic stuff. Thinking the Chili's experience was probably bad, commercial grade cilantro. Everything tastes better organic, so would cilantro. So many people rave about it and its health benefits. RUINED A WHOLE RECIPE OF SALSA!! GROSS, GROSS, GROSS. I couldn't fix it no matter how hard I tried. My salsa tasted like nickels!!!
So, we now have it figured out. It is that nasty, healthy? herb called cilantro. It probably explains why I've never been a fan of Mexican cooking to a degree. But, the insult is getting bigger:
Last night, my sweet husband took me to a local buffet for dinner. It is revered state wide for its down home, southern cooling. (Southern - think fried chicken, okra, coleslaw, not tex-mex) I wanted salad. It would be a great place to get a variety of salads and veggies. They even had steamed asparagus!!! First bite - UGH - nasty. What is wrong with the asparagus. Moved on to the cucumber salad. First bite, okay, second bite UGH!!! That same nasty flavor that was in the asparagus. Must have been contaminated because they were so close on my plate. Moved on to the broccoli salad. Okay, that did it!!! What is wrong with all this food? It all tastes like metal. . .. uh. .oh. . .CILANTRO! What do they think they are doing putting cilantro in buffet items at a southern kitchen! Who in their right mind would put cilantro in steamed asparagus? broccoli salad? cucumber salad?
Well, now I'm really mad. I'm with everyone here! Let's get a sign that tells us when that garbage is in the food! They'll warn of tasteless sulfites that kill. They'll warn of nuts and dairy that cause allergic reactions. Well, I think they should warn of CILANTRO - Crap In Lunch And Not Tasty Restaurant Off