Noble Dreams

Noble Dreams

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#11 Thu 18th Oct 2012 10:09 am

Sencha
Member
From: England
Registered: Sat 26th Jan 2008

Re: Eatting Better, Having Better Energy & Dreams

Did you just say 'chocolate mint plant'?!! yikes My life has new meaning.

I also love Dill for its aniseed-like flavour.

Yeah nice one Blue, I'll take a closer look at those. Thanks.

Last edited by Sencha (Thu 25th Oct 2012 10:35 am)


'Tea is drunk to forget the din of the world' - T’ien Yiheng.

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#12 Wed 24th Oct 2012 06:41 pm

Valentine
Member
Registered: Mon 11th Feb 2008

Re: Eatting Better, Having Better Energy & Dreams

This is timely even though it's old.

http://www.npr.org/templates/story/stor … d=98695984

I hate cilantro. As far as I'm concerned, it should be wiped off the face of the planet. And I'm not alone in my extremist views.

"It has that same sort of acrid sweetness of death," according to my friend Jason. "It's got this evilness to it," my friend Wendy concurs.

For people like us, the smell alone is enough to send us running in horror. But why? What fuels the great cilantro divide?

My quest for answers began with the Internet. It was there that I learned (from questionable sources) that our hatred arises from the fact that we are supertasters. Gifted (or burdened) with a "supersensitive palate," we are some of the rare beings who are tuned into the true nature of this nasty green beast.

" 'Supertasters' is actually a term that was originally envisioned to describe people who were particularly sensitive to a very restricted class of bitter compounds," explains Dr. Danielle Reed of the Monell Chemical Senses Center in Philadelphia, before delivering the big blow: "None of which, to the best of my knowledge, are found in cilantro."

The Official Supertaste Test

Even though Reed has done a ton of research on supertasters, I'm still willing to believe that I'm one of them. I decide to take the official test, which involves chewing up a small strip of paper soaked in propylthiouracil, a special taster chemical, for about a minute.

True supertasters don't need that long to identify the nauseating taste, however.

"If you were a supertaster, you would be very angry with me right now," Reed explains as I dutifully chew the paper. "You would be experiencing that as intensely bitter."

I taste nothing, which leads Reed to conclude that I am a "non-taster." Not even normal taster — a non-taster.

"A lot of journalists tend to be non-tasters. Wine reporters are especially upset when they find out," she explains.

As it turns out, my girlfriend, Danielle, and my friend Wendy are both supertasters. They can't wait to spit out the paper.

The Unofficial Supersmell Test

After all this, I'm willing to admit that being a supertaster has nothing to do with hating cilantro. So what could it be? The answer comes to me as I chew cilantro while holding my nose. Without smelling it, I find, it's more like harmless old parsley, but when I release my nose, it's like a bottle of soap.

According to Dr. Charles Wysocki, another Monell scientist, the problem extends far beyond me and my group of friends.

Wysocki took some chopped up cilantro to Twinsburg, Ohio, for the annual twins festival, and had identical and fraternal twins sniff cilantro and rate pleasantness. People tended to fall mainly into two groups — the lovers and the haters — and identical twins almost always rated cilantro the same way as their sibling counterpart.

This seems to suggest, "that there's a strong genetic component," he explains. "People like you may be smelling things that other people aren't."

I gather from this that the problem is that I'm a supersmeller of some sort. While cilantro lovers like Wysocki think cilantro smells "fabtastically savory," we haters are smelling something more. I needed a Gas Chromatograph (GC) to confirm my hypothesis.

The GC is a machine that basically separates a sample of stuff into its constituent compounds. It slowly heats up a sample of material over the course of 40 minutes. As the temperature rises, each compound in the mix evaporates at different times. A flow of air passes over the sample and is split into two streams: One goes past a detector; the other one goes past the subject's nose. So if we put cilantro in the GC and I smell something at minute 8 and something else at minute 12, we can pinpoint what the offending odor is.

I put my supersmelling nose to the test and at 20 minutes, I identify the evil smell.

"They're all unsaturated aldahydes," Dr. George Preti explains. There we have it, the compound that ruins every dish and makes me think of soap.

Ten minutes later, Wysocki and Preti identify the unmistakable smell of cilantro that they love. I, however, smell nothing.

This, it turns out, is the real problem. My whole life I've been unable to pick up on the scent that is so overwhelmingly good for cilantro lovers that it trumps any possible bad. I come to a disappointing realization: I am not an X-Man with superkeen sensory abilities. I am a sensory dud who's missing the true nature of cilantro.


Kindness is the language the blind can see and the deaf can hear.  Mark Twain

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#13 Wed 24th Oct 2012 06:44 pm

Valentine
Member
Registered: Mon 11th Feb 2008

Re: Eatting Better, Having Better Energy & Dreams

I don't like anything that tastes like licorice, and I gag on tarragon.  It's strange that Molly and I both adore cilantro, but she loves tarragon and I don't.


Kindness is the language the blind can see and the deaf can hear.  Mark Twain

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#14 Thu 25th Oct 2012 10:35 am

Sencha
Member
From: England
Registered: Sat 26th Jan 2008

Re: Eatting Better, Having Better Energy & Dreams

Ha - that's funny Valentine! I've tried tarragon a few times and found it OK; nothing special but pleasant enough.

I did try fenugreek in a smoothie and while I could definitely taste it I didn't find it to be overpowering. I find that adding bananas and other sweet fruit tends to mask any swamp juice sensations that I would otherwise get from all the leafy greens I include.

As a smoothie tip: I include ground black pepper because I read it is supposed to increase the rate of absorption of other nutrients in the meal / smoothie by 20%; a small amount of cayenne pepper because they say it has a similar affect regarding absorption and it also aids circulation; and also a large heaped teaspoon of tumeric for its many purported benefits.

I also tried chopped chillies in a smoothie once. I didn't try it a second time.


'Tea is drunk to forget the din of the world' - T’ien Yiheng.

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#15 Tue 30th Oct 2012 08:51 am

Valentine
Member
Registered: Mon 11th Feb 2008

Re: Eatting Better, Having Better Energy & Dreams

I bought bulk turmeric and usually take a teaspoon or so.  The other day I thought I'd try a larger portion, and it didn't end well when a bit of that powder lodged in some crevice in my throat.  In fact, I lost everything I'd taken that morning although I fought hard to keep it.  Discretion truly is the better part of valor. acklad


Kindness is the language the blind can see and the deaf can hear.  Mark Twain

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#16 Tue 30th Oct 2012 12:54 pm

Sencha
Member
From: England
Registered: Sat 26th Jan 2008

Re: Eatting Better, Having Better Energy & Dreams

That sounds unpleasant! hmm Yes I find tumeric can be stubborn as it doesn't always feel like mixing properly, so I have to make sure I spin the smoothie maker for around 30 seconds or so. I know an Asian woman who swears by the stuff and after I badly rolled my ankle a few months back (I initially suspected I'd broken it) she advised making some tumeric paste and applying it to the swollen area. I think it did reduce the swelling faster than I would have expected and also brought out the bruising quickly. Mind you, despite regular showering, my ankle remained dyed yellow for weeks afterwards.

My dad's mate had a heart attack yesterday and if my dad hadn't found him in a state and called an ambulance then he would have croaked (his heart temporarily stopped on the way to the hospital), so I'm going to try and get him supplimenting with cayenne as it's said to help strengthen the heart and clear crap out of the arteries. I think he'd struggle with a chicken korma so a glass of warm water with cayenne pepper mixed in probably won't impress him too much.


'Tea is drunk to forget the din of the world' - T’ien Yiheng.

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#17 Mon 5th Nov 2012 02:34 pm

Valentine
Member
Registered: Mon 11th Feb 2008

Re: Eatting Better, Having Better Energy & Dreams

I hope it does help him, Sencha.  Please let us know.


Kindness is the language the blind can see and the deaf can hear.  Mark Twain

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#18 Mon 5th Nov 2012 09:57 pm

molly
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From: ∞
Registered: Thu 17th Apr 2008
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Re: Eatting Better, Having Better Energy & Dreams

I've noticed that too, about people either lovin or hating cilantro. I some times stand in front of the fridge with a few sprigs in my hand, munching on it like a rabbit lol. I love the way tarragon tastes on grilled squash & salmon. That's all i ever eat it in though. It tastes weird on everything else to me but for some reason when i put it on grilled squash or salmon (salmon cooked any way, not just grilled), it makes it pop in a way i can't resist. Dang.. this thread has made me hungry grater

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#19 Tue 6th Nov 2012 11:25 am

Sencha
Member
From: England
Registered: Sat 26th Jan 2008

Re: Eatting Better, Having Better Energy & Dreams

Thanks Valentine. I went to see him at home last night and he's a bit frail but still determinedly smoking roll-ups without a filter and necking cheap lager and cider the way he has been for several decades - so he's clearly taken heed of his wake-up call lol I told him about cayenne and he's up for giving it a go and I also suggested he start smoking with a filter if he can't quit straight away. Alcoholism isn't something I see him overcoming in a hurry but then even the doctors said not to try just yet and to concentrate on knocking the fags on the head as a priority. I think if he can get down to two a day - with filters - and stick with a cayenne regime, then it will be a start at least.


'Tea is drunk to forget the din of the world' - T’ien Yiheng.

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#20 Sun 3rd Mar 2013 02:35 am

molly
♫♪
From: ∞
Registered: Thu 17th Apr 2008
Website

Re: Eatting Better, Having Better Energy & Dreams

something i noticed about cilantro recently.. grocery stores need to stop laying it next to celery. i love celery & i love cilantro but when they've been laying next to each other they sort of 'mix' in flavor & that mix is freaking gross to me. i'm so glad its time i can start growing some myself because apparently all 3 grocers near me have decided to start laying it next to celery hmm

i didn't know about turmeric & swelling. i wonder if it would help with time-of-the-month bloated-ness. i notice when i eat my 'super veggie stew' with all the different good veggies & tons of herbs & spices in it around then i tend to not get nearly as bad of symptoms. That being said though it's hard to narrow it down which it is in the stew that is helping, because theres so much. tongue ah well. i'll just keep eating the whole pot & be safe!

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