Streams

Flavorless

Friday, July 20, 2012

WNYC

I had a bad food day Thursday. Not "bad" as in salad vs. cheeseburgers. (I don't think of food that way. It doesn't deserve such moralizing.)

I mean bad as in flavorless. Bad, as in, everything I ate today turned to sawdust in my mouth.

Let's start with my omelette. Boring. Too runny.  The only flavor I coaxed out of it was from the freshly cracked pepper. Not even the pat of butter in the pan could get this party started.  My coffee?  Blah.  It didn't help that I tried oat milk in it. I took one sipped, rolled my eyes, and poured the awful concoction down the drain.  (Oat milk, Amy?  Really?)  I made a second cup, using whole milk — from Battenkill Valley, no less ("voted #1 Highest Quality Milk in New York State in 2010!") — and got a surprisingly similar result. Ick.  

Down the drain it went.

Then came lunch. I was hankering for pad thai, but the wait at the place on Carmine Street was 20 minutes, and I had a newscast coming up in 40.  I ducked into a vegan place across the street and compromised with a Vietnamese banh mi sandwich. 

The description said it would have marinated tofu, kimchee, sprouts, cucumber, carrot, mayo, avocado, cilantro, basil and mint.  Well, I got 3 out of 10.  My banh mi was a thick wet slab of tofu, three steamed carrot sticks and a smear of mayo on a big, soft roll that was to a baguette what those spongy, coffee cart bagels are to a real New York bagel. The banh mi was uninspired, to say the least.  

By dinner, I was craving flavor, a food experience, anything that would remind me of the pleasures of the table.  I thought of my favorite meal ever, the beef marrow bones and oxtail marmalade at Blue Ribbon. The place was packed. No way was I going to wait.  

Desperate, I even entertained the thought of passing directly over dinner and making a meal out of a big piece of cake at the Little Cupcake Bakeshop. But I couldn't bear the thought of walking the eight blocks through a tourist-drenched SoHo on a summer night, so I headed home.

From the fridge I pulled out a slice of salmon and some roasted cauliflower I made earlier in the week. My taste buds fell asleep mid-bite. I followed up with a bowl of homemade chocolate ice cream. This will hit the spot. Good-quality bittersweet chocolate. Organic, free-range eggs with yolks the color of marigolds. Battenkill Valley milk!  It was to deliver all that I had longed for in the last 16 hours.

It tasted weird. I don't know why. It was flavorless.

I hope my delicious meals come out of hiding Friday. Otherwise, I'll have to do something to shock my senses back to life. I'm thinking Vegemite©.

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