I have a long list of food that I didn’t like before. Atsara, carrots, oatmeal, kilawin na tuna, kilawin na baboy, Papaya, cashew, squash stew, avocado etc. Probably 80% of those I learned to love because of my wife. I don’t know, I don’t remember she tried to force me into any of it but I get persuaded by simply looking at her eat. One of those things I love about her, her influences about food.
When I was a kid, I never liked this kind of appetizer. In fact, I remember hating it. My mom would scold me for not touching it. (She always forced me to eat different kinds of food that are not to my liking. For example: Goat Blood Stew, I prefer Pork, any food related to squash, carrots, broccoli etc.) I’m a meat lover. I hate veggies when I was young (there are selected few that I love). Sometimes, my dad would snatched it out of my plate, after sensing I won’t eat it. They really have a great craving for atsara. I was really wondering what’s in it that they really love, this scraggly looking thingy, so much. I never asked, I won’t believe them anyway.
Then, I met my wife in college. She usually invite me for lunch or dinner. In one occasion, they happen to serve an atsara on the table. I haven’t noticed it at first. They, Her mom and her lola, had observed me. They noticed my habit of pushing the atsara aside. My wife told me that it’s a family recipe and said she really did a great effort to prepare that one. I’m not sure if she’s exaggerating but I can’t say no, of course, with those eyes of her family, at the table, looking at me like they’re waiting for me to do something foolish. So I tried it. Then I realized what I’ve missed.
It’s an A in my cuisine grading list. It’s perfectly blend of sweet and sour. A perfect condiment to grilled meats and fishes. My wife told me that the atsara that they prepared is actually has a secret family recipe. So that’s why It’s kind of different to other atsara I tasted before with my mom. Its flavor really stands out. Unfortunately, I can’t share the secret recipe. I think my wife told me about it, but I honestly forgotten it. I’m not really interested in cooking, anyway. I just wanted to eat :p
After that, I gobbled on atsara every chance I got. Just like my dad, I developed a new habit of snatching other’s atsara when I’m sure they won’t eat it (Especially when I’m with my friends eating on a grill house) They don’t know what they’re missing. Probably, that’s what my father was thinking when he took my atsara when I was a kid.
Here are the others. Food I’m surprised I like in the present:
There are so much more.. 🙂
Achara or Atsara Recipe (Filipino Pickled Green Papaya) – (pinoyrecipe.net)
Filipino Achara/Atsara – (archive.blisstree.com)
Slimy Oysters – (deedeedelores.wordpress.com)
Chinese Bhel – a pleasantly surprising flavour – (parwatisingari.wordpress.com)