let me preface this by saying: i’m trying, i really am. i am a big baby when it comes to food… i don’t really do "exotic" food and i pretty much eat like your typical six year old. i love peanut butter and jelly sandwiches (you know, every day), and cereal, and the aforementioned mac & cheese. i am very finicky about certain "tastes," as i call them. for instance, i usually don’t like things that have "chinese food taste." i was 22 before i ever tried guacamole, and 25 before i ever tried caesar salad. i adored them both but no longer eat the one with the fish and the eggs and the cheese mayitrestinpeace.
i used to jokingly call myself the world’s worst vegetarian, because i cannot stand mushrooms–which, i swear, are the official vegetable of vegetarians. i also learned a couple of years ago that eggplant is the devil–another vegetarian standby, especially at restaurants.
so, okay, i’m "selective." we’ve got that out of the way.
i try to be a good sport, though. and especially since i’ve become vegan, i’m being really good about trying new things. at the moment, however, i have found myself up against a treacherous opponent: oats.
i do not like oats. i’m not sure if i can logically blame this on my mother’s distaste for oatmeal raisin cookies (oh yes. i also hate raisins.), but i think i will. i was trained at an early age to take chocolate chip over oatmeal raisin at every opportunity. i never had oatmeal as a child. now that i am vegan, it seems that almost every vegan treat is full of oats. what up with that?
first, there’s the oatmeal. vegan breakfast of champions! last semester, when i mentioned my transition to veganism to one of my classes, several students piped up with their love of oatmeal. i got tons of suggestions on what kind to get, how to make it, when to eat it, you name it. i bought myself a little bowl of instant microwave oatmeal (cinnamon swirl or something) and ate it at my sister’s one day when i was babysitting my adorable niece. holy lord, the syrupy gruel! i forced myself to eat it like a big girl, but i did not enjoy it. when i later told yet another oatmeal-loving friend about my experiment, she scolded me for buying "the gross kind" and told me what to get instead. dutifully, i followed her directions, got the boxed instant (apple cinnamon), and made some the other day (using milk instead of water) when i was feeling sickly. okay, this was better gruel, but it was gruel nonetheless. my oatmeal looks *nothing* like the oatmeal on the front of the box. i couldn’t even finish the bowl. am i really too stupid to measure out 1/2 cup of milk correctly? i have no idea what i’m doing wrong.
then, there are the power bars. every single one of them has oats. luna bars, clif bars, you name it. if it’s a vegan protein-y bar thing, it has oats. i keep hearing people rave about clif bars, and they have some awesome-sounding flavors, but i’m reluctant to plunk down money to eat a mouthful of oats masquerading as lemon poppyseeds.
the lone exception that i have found is the bumblebar. which, just don’t. it’s like eating a very flat bar made entirely of birdseed. the bar i bought was "chai almond," which sounded quite tempting, but although the ingredients promised chocolate and almonds and whatnot, it was really just a buttload of sesame seeds glued to some flax seeds and a teeny almond chip here or there. i ate three bites, gave the rest to my sweet husband, who ate about six bites and then we tossed it out. sorry, bumblebar.
but i really am trying. i swear.