Growing up, my mom was always introducing us to different ethnic food and educating us on the places and cultures that it came from. While in Girl Scouts she did a whole meeting about Chinese New Year and we all had egg rolls. She even convinced the local grocery store to give her this giant dragon’s head from a previous display. We had that thing in our house for years.
My first experience with Mexican food, while not so pleasant, is a much more vivid memory. Mom was making something called burritos and she asked if I wanted beans or cheese variety. At the time, cheese meant either on a pizza or the yellow slices on grilled cheese. Some time before I had developed an aversion to those slices and to yellow cheese in general. I still liked pizza cheese though. So, I said beans. I figured beans were green beans and I really did like green beans.
A little while later, we are called to the table and there is this burrito thing placed in front of me. Honestly, I don’t recall what it looks like but I could see the beans and they were not green beans but rather this mush of brown. I’m sure I tried a bite but I had zero interest in continuing. And my mom was upset because I asked for beans! Usually in this case, we were expected to try at least one bit and if we didn’t like it, that was okay. However, I recall that in this situation, I was expected to eat more because it was my choice for beans. Did I eat the whole thing? Who knows but I still can’t stand refried beans or any plain brown beans. Its only been in the last 5 years or so that I’ve been able to enjoy black beans and they must be whole for me to eat them.
As an aside, I still don’t like those yellow cheese slices but I will eat other yellow cheeses now- the solid kind. No melty nacho cheese or anything in a can. Not that the canned stuff is cheese anyway, more like cheese product.