Thursday, January 25, 2007

Ring of Fire

Photo by Don_Gato

Some months ago, I was making sushi and I set a green tube of wasabi paste on the counter.

"I dare you to try this," I said to Jake, "Betcha' can't stand it."

I'm not really a spicy food lover. Sure, I like spice but I'm more all talk and sauce. When we went to the Southwest USA last year, my poor virgin taste buds were screaming for mercy. Let's face it, Canadian-Mexican food has nothing on Southwest food. The further north you go, the more things cool. Literally. I'll never forget ordering some chipolte chicken wrap thing in Wendover, Utah and it was so hot that my eyes watered as I choked it down. Then there were the bowls of shiny green jalapenos at the breakfast buffets that locals crunched down for a snack. (shudder) Yeow!

So anyway that evening Jake, being the always adventurous eater, and I had bites of California roll with wasabi on it so hot that we could feel the waves of heat up into our sinuses like lava flowing from a volcano. It was almost a form of self torture, but we just couldn't stop ourselves. Nibble, "Oh my god that's hot! My eyes are burning!", gulp some water, nibble some more. It's so hot deliciously tasty at the same time! Little did I know, I was hooking my child on the green paste-of-fire. It has worked it's way up the ladder in his culinary tastes to occupy a spot amoung his other loves; pesto and chocolate.

The other day I bought a package of wasabi peas to nibble on. I made a snack mix of plain popcorn, mini pretzels, Gold fish crackers and wasabi peas for Jake's school lunches. Wouldn't you know it, Jake and I keep sneaking back into the pantry to steal "just another handful" of the peas. The peas that, as we have made our way down to the bottom of the package, have gone from the 1 alarm heat in the beginning to now bordering on 4 alarm. The peas that leave my mouth burning but somehow I can't stop eating, and when I lick the wasabi residue off my fingers, my lips feel like they will spontaneously combust at any moment.

I wonder if I can actually wait the two more days to grocery day before I buy some more?


I wonder if I can hide them from Jake?

Probably not.

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