Picky Tongues:You have to choose one flavor that your sense of taste will no longer be able to distinguish. Sweet, sour, bitter, salty, umami, spicy (not a taste per se, but we’re generous): which one do you choose to lose?
Whatever category liver falls into, that’s the one I’d choose to lose. (BTW, have you ever wondered who decided about the spelling of those two words: choose and lose? I mean, why isn’t it chose [chews?] if it’s lose, or loose if it’s choose?) Anyway, back to liver.
There were very few things that literally made me gag when I was a kid. I didn’t like gravy. Go figure. Love it now. Didn’t like the bread stuffing in our Thanksgiving turkey. Another acquired taste, I guess. Couldn’t stand boiled hot dogs served up with a side of sauerkraut. Still can’t. Of course, the sauerkraut was canned. My dad loved it. Blech. The only really good sauerkraut I’ve ever tasted was homemade by my friend Margie. Now, that was something else.
The only other thing I really had a hard time getting down was liver. Remember, this was back in the day when your parents told you to be thankful for whatever was on your plate, because just think of the poor starving Korean orphans. I never could make the connection. I would have been most happy to send my liver portion to Korea, but obviously that wasn’t going to happen, so what was the point? Anyway, there was no option. You didn’t say you’d rather have peanut butter. Your mom didn’t fix you something else. You ate the nasty liver and tried not to let it come back up, because there would be dire consequences if that happened. A strong distaste for any food was considered a form of rebellion in my house. No quarter given. Ever.
So I learned to get it down. A small bite of liver, a bite of mashed potatoes, a sip of milk, a bite of bread and butter, anything to push it down my resisting throat and get it overwith.
When I got married, my husband disclosed that he loved liver. I considered getting an annulment. Tell you what–I’ll eat the onions, you eat the liver. Blech. Really, really blech.
I tried cooking it a lot less than my mom had, because Terry told me the way my mom did it, because my dad liked it that way, reminded him of a hockey puck. Undercooking didn’t help. It was still liver, only squishy. Gag.
Then, oh frabjous day, I read somewhere that liver isn’t good for your cholesterol count. Haven’t cooked it since.
Think about it. What does liver do in your body? Did you ever look it up? Here’s an appetizing picture of this delightful piece of equipment., I know I need to have a liver to be healthy, but I don’t need to eat liver to be healthy. I can take iron tablets or chew on a rusty pipe if I need iron.
Honestly, the taste is truly abominable to me. I have no idea why anyone enjoys the stuff. I know they do, but I can’t understand it. I’m sure someone out there has studied why things taste like ambrosia to some and like filth and foul to others. I’m sure there’s a good explanation for it. I just don’t really care very much, as long as I never have to touch, cook, smell, or taste the stuff EVER AGAIN as long as I live.
And that includes scrapple, by the way. For the uninitiated, scrapple is a favorite Pennsylvania Dutch treat, a mush made of pork trimmings and cornmeal that congeals into a loaf that you slice and fry. Those trimmings include organ meats. Liver. You can’t disguise it. People out here either love it or hate it, and I’m in the latter group. When we first moved here, we were offered this rare treat several times. I tried. I really did. “Oh, have it with molasses! It’s wonderful! Eat it with eggs! You’ll love it! Ketchup! Syrup! Fried in lard/butter/bacon drippings! My grandpa’s recipe! My secret family tradition!”
Nope. Tried it all. Liver. You can’t fool me. It’s in there, and I will never, ever try it again. Don’t offer it to me, because I’ll hurt your feelings.
Some things just never change. The taste of liver is one of them.