During my visitation, I try to be an agreeable guest when in the homes of my family and friends. Although I am known to be a picky eater, I do eat what I am served unless I know it will make me sick.
That means I eat a lot of food I would never eat at home, which is not a bad thing.
“Would you like a grilled cheese sandwich?”
I so rarely eat in other people’s homes now that I forget that they use white bread and American cheese when they make a grilled cheese sandwich. I don’t think I have ever purchased American cheese or white bread, although at least one of my children wishes we’d been a white bread family. It might have been a bland sandwich, if my friend hadn’t also offered tomatoes.
This summer, the local farm stand tomatoes are delicious, bright red to their center, juicy, and flavorful. I’d almost forgotten what a real tomato tastes like. No wonder I rarely buy them at the grocer’s.
“I know you don’t eat meat, so I made chicken.”
I always tell people not to plan meals around me. I am quite happy eating the veggies and skipping the meat course of a meal; it’s what I do at home when I cook for my family. When people tell me they made chicken especially for me, though, I am flummoxed.
Should I explain that chicken is meat? It seems rude, so I eat a small a portion and hope my digestive tract doesn’t hate me for the next couple days. I would not know if it did, because my entire body is hating me right now for sitting it in a car for hours every day and eating dessert everywhere I go.
I can’t help it. I’m special occasion to everyone, and they all make dessert for me. Homemade. It would be heartless to say, “No, thank you,” to a cupcake loving made and decorated by an eight year old.
“I forgot you don’t eat this.”
Until I arrived, my mother in law forgot that I can’t eat mayo (it does make me sick), so her beautiful luncheon of chicken and tuna salads was out of the question for me. I was so happy when, without a fuss, she offered to scramble eggs for me.
I never realized she added condensed milk to her eggs before. No wonder they taste so creamy. I should try that for guests at my house.
I did remember that my in laws eat cool whip.
The only time I’ve bought cool whip was to make the very dessert she served: pretzel delight. I made it for my book club once, when we’d read Bill Bryson’s Life and Times of the Thunderbolt Kid, which mentioned his memories of the many jello salads served during his childhood. Pretzel Delight was the jello dish of my husband’s childhood.
I am not a fan of jello, or cool whip, and could happily scrape those layers away and eat the entire tray of pretzel, butter, and sugar crust. I don’t, of course. I eat a neatly cut square.
As I write about it, I am wondering what non-jello, non-cool whip concoctions I could place atop a pretzel crust. I’m going to experiment with this when I get back to Colorado. I’m thinking tart apples and a caramel sauce. Or berries with slightly sweetened cream cheese. Or peanut butter mousse and dark chocolate.
I’ll let you know if anything works out, because, if you’ve never had it, you need to try a pretzel crust.