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You guys are so right. It's a serious incompatibility and it makes me afraid. Just now I was trying to explain to him how food can go through trends and phases much like fashion - and he was like 'that's stupid.' But he doesn't even know anything about it so how can he says it's stupid?? If he knew something about food, fine, but he doesn't even care. That's a small thing but it really bugged me.

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You guys are so right. It's a serious incompatibility and it makes me afraid. Just now I was trying to explain to him how food can go through trends and phases much like fashion - and he was like 'that's stupid.' But he doesn't even know anything about it so how can he says it's stupid?? If he knew something about food, fine, but he doesn't even care. That's a small thing but it really bugged me.

I'll go ahead and agree with everyone else here that the two of you are incompatible. I feel the same way about fashion as he feels about food. I wish that I could just wear the same set of clothes every day, or identical sets of clothing, so that I'd never have to think about what to wear. But deciding on what to eat is definitely a different story.

My current fiancee thinks less about food than I do, but he is very appreciative of everything I cook for him, so I guess I'm just lucky. The only food I can think of that he really doesn't like is olives, although he will eat them, if they're an ingredient in something that he is eating, like a tapenade or something.

Oh, and he doesn't like fish maw soup. But then, I don't know many people who do, aside from myself.

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I'll go ahead and agree with everyone else here that the two of you are incompatible. I feel the same way about fashion as he feels about food. I wish that I could just wear the same set of clothes every day, or identical sets of clothing, so that I'd never have to think about what to wear.

Lots of people wear essentially the same clothes every day. They are called guys. I am not a guy but I figured out how to do this: if you dress plainly enough people don't really notice.
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My SO is lovely. I am delighted by the way this guy has had a simple, down home suburban upbringing and yet revels in cooking and eating new things with me.

I was born and raised in SouthEast Asia, and he's only recently left Australia - where we live - for the first time, so his readiness for new things is wonderful.

He tried Thai, Japanese, Chinese and Vietnamese food, and loved them all. He surprised me by recreating dishes I grew up with, having sneakily bought a local cookbook on a trip to Singapore.

So what is it that peeves me about his eating habits? Quite simply, it's the sheer breadth of his despised foods.

He won't eat crustaceans except for prawns, shrimp, or crayfish. (And by crayfish I mean rock lobsters, without claws, not the tiny crawfish that are palm sized.) He won't eat any molluscs except cooked oysters, squid and octopus. And he's terribly fastidious about the quality of any fin fish that he is presented with, comparing their freshness to the ones he's caught himself.

He won't eat unusual meats or game, even farmed. No meat of deer, bison, buffalo, rabbit, kangaroo or crocodile. However, farmed game birds are okay, like quail or pheasant.

He won't eat any non muscle meats. No offal, no liver, no pate, no black pudding or tripe. The thought of haggis turns him green.

I know all the above doesn't seem like much, and certainly isn't unusual. But against how adventurous he is otherwise, his aversions are just so stark.

It's enough to make me tear my hair out sometimes. Especially since we're off to Paris in May. Guess I'll have to eat all his foie gras! :laugh:

" ..Is simplicity the best

Or simply the easiest

The narrowest path

Is always the holiest.. "

--Depeche Mode - Judas

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Its not the food incompatibility thats the problem with an SO. A person can go 'fooding' with another friend, just as I shoe-shop with someone not my husband.

The problem is the "that's stupid". NOT a good sign to have one's interests derided as stupid. The Mr thinks the cost of a French Laundry meal would be stupid (and for us, it would be. Sigh :sad: ), but at least he'd eat the food!

Peeves.... he makes 'icky face' at some of the combinations our munchkin puts together. Just 'cause they arent common in his universe. Some of them turn out to be classics in other cultures. In fact, the munchkin is the most adventurous eater in our house. I hate the 'face making' judgement thing.

"You dont know everything in the world! You just know how to read!" -an ah-hah! moment for 6-yr old Miss O.

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Michelle, I hear you about the going "fooding" with a friend. That's how I get my fix of seafood and exotic korean cuisine (like live abalone sashimi) fix. I would go out with my girlfriends and we would dine, chat up and enjoy the food. One doesn't have to give up his/her food choices if her SO/hubby/wife/insert-appropriate-title do not share it. One just has to find ways to enjoy it without the offending SO/hubby/wife/insert-appropriate-title.

Doddie aka Domestic Goddess

"Nobody loves pork more than a Filipino"

eGFoodblog: Adobo and Fried Chicken in Korea

The dark side... my own blog: A Box of Jalapenos

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My SO is lovely. I am delighted by the way this guy has had a simple, down home suburban upbringing and yet revels in cooking and eating new things with me.

I was born and raised in SouthEast Asia, and he's only recently left Australia - where we live - for the first time, so his readiness for new things is wonderful.

He tried Thai, Japanese, Chinese and Vietnamese food, and loved them all. He surprised me by recreating dishes I grew up with, having sneakily bought a local cookbook on a trip to Singapore.

So what is it that peeves me about his eating habits? Quite simply, it's the sheer breadth of his despised foods.

He won't eat crustaceans except for prawns, shrimp, or crayfish. (And by crayfish I mean rock lobsters, without claws, not the tiny crawfish that are palm sized.) He won't eat any molluscs except cooked oysters, squid and octopus. And he's terribly fastidious about the quality of any fin fish that he is presented with, comparing their freshness to the ones he's caught himself.

He won't eat unusual meats or game, even farmed. No meat of deer, bison, buffalo, rabbit, kangaroo or crocodile. However, farmed game birds are okay, like quail or pheasant.

He won't eat any non muscle meats. No offal, no liver, no pate, no black pudding or tripe. The thought of haggis turns him green.

I know all the above doesn't seem like much, and certainly isn't unusual. But against how adventurous he is otherwise, his aversions are just so stark.

It's enough to make me tear my hair out sometimes.  Especially since we're off to Paris in May. Guess I'll have to eat all his foie gras! :laugh:

Okay, I'm gonna go out on a limb here and say you are gettin' a bit picky. Give your great guy a break! The truth is that your lovely SO eats most things from most of the food groups! He appreciates really fresh fish (I'm with him!) eats some shellfish and crustacea, eats most meat except game and exotics, and likes a variety of ethnic foods AND is willing to try stuff. I was in France last year and didn't eat octopus or any of other things on his no-no list (okay, except mussels) the whole time I was there, and I ate really really well. There's plenty of great food in France on his good list; it isn't like the French are eating roast crickets or antelope. More likely roast chicken. If he doesn't love foie gras then he's a cheap date and as you say, more for you.

Given a choice I would probably go with steak frites rather than haggis myself, not that haggis will be on the menu in most Parisian restaurants. You will have a great time!

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Okay, I'm gonna go out on a limb here and say you are gettin' a bit picky. Give your great guy a break! The truth is that your lovely SO eats most things from most of the food groups! He appreciates really fresh fish (I'm with him!) eats some shellfish and crustacea, eats most meat except game and exotics, and likes a variety of ethnic foods AND is willing to try stuff. I was in France last year and didn't eat octopus or any of other things on his no-no list (okay, except mussels) the whole time I was there, and I ate really really well. There's plenty of great food in France on his good list; it isn't like the French are eating roast crickets or antelope. More likely roast chicken. If he doesn't love foie gras then he's a cheap date and as you say, more for you.

Given a choice I would probably go with steak frites rather than haggis myself, not that haggis will be on the menu in most Parisian restaurants. You will have a great time!

Okay, so maybe I am a bit picky. :biggrin: He's just such a wonderful guy that I forget sometimes how far he's come from the white bread, meat and potatoes thing.

I just wish sometimes I could show him how yummy so many other things are. :raz:

" ..Is simplicity the best

Or simply the easiest

The narrowest path

Is always the holiest.. "

--Depeche Mode - Judas

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4. i think going to the fat duck or el bulli would be so cool - he thinks it sounds 'gross and stupid'.

he doesn't understand why i see all of this as a major incompatibility.

thinking about all this makes me feel like crying a bit.

Gingerbeer- Run away, run now, run far. My guess is that as time progresses, you will find that this pinhead finds A LOT of things you like "gross and stupid".

As far as me, well, I'm married to the best woman on the face of the planet, so the term "pet peeve" probably wouldn't apply.

I find it rather funny that at the end of a delicious beef stew I prepared, there's a nicely organized little pile of mushrooms off to the side of her plate. So, I simply slide them on to my plate.

If I do, say, a 1/4" dice, no problemo. She likes the taste, doesn't like the texture. A bit "slimy" for her palate, I guess.

Me? I don't need no stinkin' fruit in my salad. Nor with my meat, with rare exceptions.

Steve

"Tell your friends all around the world, ain't no companion like a blue - eyed merle" Robert Plant

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I find it rather funny that at the end of a delicious beef stew I prepared, there's a nicely organized little pile of mushrooms off to the side of her plate.  So, I simply slide them on to my plate.

Same here with me, I just slide that pile of mushrooms on my plate/bowl. Sometimes, its black olives. It makes me think of that Sandra Bullock/Hugh Grant movie where they were at the restaurant and both were taking stuff off their salads and putting it on each other's bowls. They never realized they were perfect together until the end.

Doddie aka Domestic Goddess

"Nobody loves pork more than a Filipino"

eGFoodblog: Adobo and Fried Chicken in Korea

The dark side... my own blog: A Box of Jalapenos

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  • 2 weeks later...

LOML has this habit of eating these nasty frozen, nuke and eat veggie pot pie pasties for breakfast almost every morning because "they have enough protein in them" and she (thinks she) does not have time to sit down for 5-10 minutes like a normal person and eat a real breakfast.

I occasionally make the mistake of getting her opinion on what to make for dinner. This usually devolves into a 1-1.5 hour "I don't know" ordeal with 5+ cookbooks on the couch because she cannot make up her mind and nothing I suggest is acceptable.

Will not eat most lettuce or greens because they are "weeds"

Snacks in front of me just before I start to make dinner.

Dan

Edited by DanM (log)

"Salt is born of the purest of parents: the sun and the sea." --Pythagoras.

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Gingerbeer....run dear friend, run.

I am fortunate in that my hubby likes just about everything I cook, however, there are only a couple kinds of seafood he likes, tilapa and salmon. Likes shrimp, don't like lobster, likes scallops. But that is it. I grew up in Seattle going down to Pike Place Market..it hurts.

Eats far too much fast food. Way too much. Fast food don't even rank as food to me.

No meat and fruit combination, or fruit in salads.

And lately has been on this kick of "basic plain stuff is good" like plain blueberry pie, plain brownies. While yes, it is good sometimes, sometimes I like a blueberry pie with lemon marscapone cream, plain is sometimes just that.

But I have to admit, he has come a long way since we first met. When we first got together he ate frozen or packaged food all the time. Was amazed the first time I made fresh pasta or cake from scratch. He even does a good deal of the cooking now and all from scratch. :wub:

"I eat fat back, because bacon is too lean"

-overheard from a 105 year old man

"The only time to eat diet food is while waiting for the steak to cook" - Julia Child

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All of you who are telling me to run... do you think that, apart from trying to cook/taking him to good places... I can use any other tactics to get him to like food? When we're out and he just wants to stop at the first random place, should I just be more assertive and put my foot down and say, 'No. We are going to find somewhere actually good.' ?

He's very stubborn and complains that my 'planning' (e.g. investigating what are great places to eat beforehand) is stressful (though I don't make him do any of it, I just make a little list of good places wherever we're going to).

Edited by gingerbeer (log)
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All of you who are telling me to run... do you think that, apart from trying to cook/taking him to good places... I can use any other tactics to get him to like food?

Although my first instinct is to advise you to dump him, I will say that my husband was not the most adventurous eater when I first met him, having been raised in a household where a 4-oz can of corn split between 5 people was regularly the "vegetable," when there even was one--otherwise it was just baked chicken and rice, steak and rice, ham and rice, etc.. Every time he told me he didn't like something (soup! ::roll eyes:: green beans, etc.) I said "That's ridiculous! You just haven't had it prepared well," and proceeded to make and serve it anyway.

Twenty years later, he is a very adventurous eater--when we encounter something we've never heard of on a menu, he's often the first to say "well, we have to have that!" and is only too willing to spend money we don't have eating at nice restaurants. BUT--his problem was never that he didn't care about food, just that he had very limited horizons and a squeamish palate. He was willing to go along with my insistence that he should be able to enjoy almost everything the food world had to offer. I suggest you give this guy a brief trial to see if he is willing to be led. If not, then you really should think about moving on. If you are here on this site, then food is obviously very important to you, and you will bump up against this issue three times a day for the rest of your life. Why not make those three times a day a pleasure instead of a struggle?

As for my pet peeve: My husband never remembers what he ate! Like, if I am reminiscing about some great meal we once had, he just has a blank look. Or if I make something once, then make it again a few months later, he has no recollection that he's ever had it before. Or if I say, "Want to have [ethnic dish] tonight?" he will have no idea what I'm talking about, even if it is something he loves. And if I ask him what he wants to have, he will usually name whatever we had at the last meal! I shouldn't complain--he happily eats anything I make and is lavish with praise, but I just wish it was as important to him as it is to me. Lately he has been having cravings for sushi and dim sum and insisting that we go out for those things, and I can't tell you how happy it makes me!

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You need to ask yourself if there are other redeeming qualities that make the effort worthwhile. But I'm skeptical - it's almost like he's threatened by your love of food. As someone else pointed out earlier, it's not totally necessary to have your partner completely share your passion for food (hey, I have my husband, and then I have my food-freak friends), but the fact that he doesn't respect and even belittles you for it sets the alarm bells off.

I'm not sure that you want to put the effort into someone who's so dead set against what you love. At any rate, good luck figuring this out.

**Melanie**

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You need to ask yourself if there are other redeeming qualities that make the effort worthwhile.  But I'm skeptical - it's almost like he's threatened by your love of food.  As someone else pointed out earlier, it's not totally necessary to have your partner completely share your passion for food (hey, I have my husband, and then I have my food-freak friends), but the fact that he doesn't respect and even belittles you for it sets the alarm bells off.

I'm not sure that you want to put the effort into someone who's so dead set against what you love.  At any rate, good luck figuring this out.

oh boy. TOTALLY AGREE. his attitude is disturbing, not the fact that he doesn't love food the way you do.

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You need to ask yourself if there are other redeeming qualities that make the effort worthwhile.  But I'm skeptical - it's almost like he's threatened by your love of food.  As someone else pointed out earlier, it's not totally necessary to have your partner completely share your passion for food (hey, I have my husband, and then I have my food-freak friends), but the fact that he doesn't respect and even belittles you for it sets the alarm bells off.

I'm not sure that you want to put the effort into someone who's so dead set against what you love.  At any rate, good luck figuring this out.

oh boy. TOTALLY AGREE. his attitude is disturbing, not the fact that he doesn't love food the way you do.

Agreed as well. I would also venture to add that the attitude is very immature. That in itself sets off warning bells.

My husband was not an adventurous eater when we first met, but he has come along nicely once he realized that food could be more than fuel.

He is a picky eater, but even that has relaxed a lot in the last two years or so. (We have been together for 20.) He supported my decision to go to cooking school, and has purchased many toys for me to play with so that he could benefit from the spoils. (Think industrial ice cream machine, knives, pasta machine, sausage stuffer.....etc.)

He doesn't like cooking at all. But even tonight, I negotiated to have him peel the veg for dinner.

Maturity and support from your partner is huge.

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All of you who are telling me to run... do you think that, apart from trying to cook/taking him to good places... I can use any other tactics to get him to like food? When we're out and he just wants to stop at the first random place, should I just be more assertive and put my foot down and say, 'No. We are going to find somewhere actually good.' ?

He's very stubborn and complains that my 'planning' (e.g. investigating what are great places to eat beforehand) is stressful (though I don't make him do any of it, I just make a little list of good places wherever we're going to).

For me I think the fact that when you talk about what you are passionate about, his attitude is negetive. Being supportive of the interest of the other person is important in a relationship, you don't have to like everything the the other person likes (it is helpful, I admit) but you do have to support. And it makes me wonder if the relationship goes any further what else will he not support.

"I eat fat back, because bacon is too lean"

-overheard from a 105 year old man

"The only time to eat diet food is while waiting for the steak to cook" - Julia Child

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  • 3 weeks later...

Gingerbeer, I just wanted to echo everyone else's sensible advice: this guy doesn't sound merely uninterested, he sounds like he's highly annoyed by your love and appreciation of food. Why do you want to seriously invest your time and energies in converting him? Frankly, based on what you have said, he doesn't even sound like a nice person, much less a food-lover.

If this was just a situation where the guy has no palate and was raised on frozen/canned food, it would be one thing. But for him to belittle and insult your interests (and your attempts to broaden his horizons) is disturbing, and no one should have to put up with that.

As for my SO, I am very lucky to have someone who loves food, but has no idea how to cook. So whenever I make even the simplest thing for him, he acts as if I just invented fire or something. It is really gratifying to share my interest in food with him, because he's so open to trying new things and is appreciative of it.

I should note that he's even becoming much better and more confident in the kitchen, which has been really fun for me to see.

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All of you who are telling me to run... do you think that, apart from trying to cook/taking him to good places... I can use any other tactics to get him to like food? When we're out and he just wants to stop at the first random place, should I just be more assertive and put my foot down and say, 'No. We are going to find somewhere actually good.' ?

He's very stubborn and complains that my 'planning' (e.g. investigating what are great places to eat beforehand) is stressful (though I don't make him do any of it, I just make a little list of good places wherever we're going to).

Yeah, I dunno. It seems a little precipitous for a bunch of total strangers to be advising you to dump a man you say you care for, despite the one big thing you find alienating about him.

If I were giving advice, I might suggest instead, if you really care that much about him, that you try approaching the whole subject in a different way first. Instead of giving him a list of restaurants to choose from, why not instead just make a reservation at a particular place and then make a date to meet him there? Do it every couple of weeks maybe to start. Or pick up some great food you like and bring it home for dinner. Don't ask him what he wants, just bring it home and put it on the table.

As a sort of bargaining chip, if he objects to meeting you at a restaurant, ask him what sort of thing he'd like you to enjoy with him that you normally wouldn't do on your own and suggest you'll try that out for awhile if he tries your thing out for awhile.

My husband loves food, all kinds of food. But at home, for years, he refused to eat leftovers, thinking them inferior to freshly made meals, and he also had (still does to some degree) a habit of saying no to whatever I felt like making for dinner, even though he likes the food itself. It's just that he wasn't in the mood for whatever I was offering. We did that for about ten years. I finally just said, "We're having X for dinner" without consulting him because I knew he'd actually eat whatever I'd make. For some reason, he just seems to like saying "no." Thankfully, he's come around on the subject of leftovers as well.

But honestly, if your guy isn't a philanderer, a drug or sex addict, an alcoholic, abusive, etc., and this is his one flaw? I'd be inclined to try for a little longer to help him come to his senses.

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This is a wonderful thread. First off, I'm the cook and find the restrictions limiting.

GF's food particularities:

No beets - any kind - raw or cooked ever, anytime.

No cooked spinach - but raw in salad is fine.

No oatmeal - although I have put oatmeal into a bread she loved.

No grits.

No hot cereals - none!

No okra - never!

Gravy - OK sometimes - not others - I don't know why.

Squash - some are "bad" - but which is bad is a mystery.

Mushroom soup - sometimes OK but not very often.

Scrambled eggs + omelettes - have to be cooked till fully rubberized. A crime.

She randomly makes discouraging comments about foods and I can't figure out the underlying motivation.

She spreads out hot food for it to cool somewhat. Whatever happened to the joy of really fresh, hot from the kitchen food?

It's sometimes like feeding a petulant child. Dammit, I like spinach and beets and I want to cook more of them. I have to wait till she is travelling to eat them happily.

OK, in the interest of fairness, some very positive things; she, like me, believes bacon is a gift from the heavens and would be hard put to dismiss any reasonable use for it - and many unreasonable; she is far more daring than I about exotic ingredients.

For some reason quotes aren't working right now so...

Marlene said: " ... He won't let me put nuts in brownies or chocolate chip cookies, or in anything in fact, although he eats nuts ... "

Score one for your SO on this one...Nuts ruin the purity of a good CC cookie for me, and same with a brownie. I like many nuts, but they are just plain wrong for me in CC cookies, brownies and ice cream too.

CaliPoutine said " ... She also douses her french fries with salt. ... "

Ummmm, FF live for salt. They NEEED a heart attack.

DanM said " ... I occasionally make the mistake of getting her opinion on what to make for dinner. This usually devolves into a 1-1.5 hour "I don't know" ordeal with 5+ cookbooks on the couch because she cannot make up her mind and nothing I suggest is acceptable. ... "

My response: "so, I've suggested something and you shot it down. Your turn, what do you suggest?"

DanM said " ... Snacks in front of me just before I start to make dinner. Dan"

That's just plain evil! It's food bigamy.

gingerbeer said "All of you who are telling me to run... do you think that, apart from trying to cook/taking him to good places... I can use any other tactics to get him to like food? When we're out and he just wants to stop at the first random place, should I just be more assertive and put my foot down and say, 'No. We are going to find somewhere actually good.' ? He's very stubborn and complains that my 'planning' (e.g. investigating what are great places to eat beforehand) is stressful (though I don't make him do any of it, I just make a little list of good places wherever we're going to)."

Devlin said something much like I want to. I'm sure your friend has positive qualities that recommend him. But I would add, as others here have, that there is something very unsettling about the need to belittle your inclinations. I can't stand cilantro, but am happy others do and wish I did. I don't want to remove that joy from other's lives. Please be careful. There is the odor of something wrong here.

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The "something wrong" sounds to me like "control issues". Your potential SO sounds like a serious control freak. It goes beyond his having different tastes and interests than yours; he's bugged by your interests and efforts, and he belittles them. If you're describing his behavior accurately, then you should bail. Now. You won't change him, and he's busy trying to change you.

Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
HosteG Forumsnsmith@egstaff.org

"Every day should be filled with something delicious, because life is too short not to spoil yourself. " -- Ling (with permission)

"There comes a time in every project when you have to shoot the engineer and start production." -- author unknown

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