A Post For Fun: The Omnivore’s Hundred

Andrew, the blogger behind the UK food blog, Very Good Taste, (and author of the book, Eat Britain) made a list of one hundred comestibles which he believes every omnivore should try at least once in their lives. He asks that other bloggers copy the list to their blogs, bold the items they have personally consumed and strike out any item that they under no circumstances would consume, and post it to their blog, then if they like, post a comment on his blog linking to their lists.

So, in honor of Labor Day which supposedly celebrates the Labor Movement in the US, but usually is celebrated by a last bit of summer fun before all the work of autumn commences, I decided to play along.

In addition to following Andrew’s instructions, I figured it would be more interesting if I not only boldfaced the items I had consumed, but made note of where I first did so, and perhaps, boldfaced and changed the color of items which I cook and eat on a regular basis. (If I cook the dish, it will be green and bold.) Not only that, but at the end of the post, I am going to add my own list of dishes, foods and drinks I think that everyone should taste at least once.

Here are Andrew’s instructions, if any of my food blogging buddies want to play along:

1) Copy this list into your blog or journal, including these instructions.
2) Bold all the items you’ve eaten.
3) Cross out any items that you would never consider eating.
4) Optional extra: Post a comment here at www.verygoodtaste.co.uk linking to your results.

The VGT Omnivore’s Hundred:

1. Zak introduced me to this classic. I now only make it myself from beef tenderloin from a local producer I trust.
5. Crocodile
6. Black pudding
7. I guess that this would be unusual for a foodie anywhere else but the US.
14. Aloo gobi I make this all the time.
15. Hot dog from a street cart From New York, no less.
16. Epoisses
17. Black truffle And white truffle, while we are at it. I ate the former in culinary school, and the latter in risotto at Biba.
18. Fruit wine made from something other than grapes Elderberry wine, from Shade Winery here in Athens County.
19. Steamed pork buns I cannot count how many times I have eaten and made these.
20. Pistachio ice cream Pistachio gelato is even better.
21. Heirloom tomatoes I grow them, so of course, I eat them. I also make salsa, salads, sauces and all sorts of other stuff from them.
22. Fresh wild berries I grew up eating wild blackberries and continue the tradition to this day.
23. Foie gras Seared foie gras over a rare bison tenderloin at Handke’s in Columbus about five years ago. Amazingly tasty.
24. Rice and beans Every week, in a myriad of forms, I cook and/or eat beans and rice.
25. Brawn, or head cheese
26. Raw Scotch Bonnet pepper Yep. Been there, done that.
27. Dulce de leche Oh, my, yes. Every time I visit the in-laws in Miami, I must eat dulce de leche at least once.
28. Oysters I’ve had them, but don’t like them. They taste fine, but the texture–ick. It gets me every time.
29. Baklava We have it at work. ‘Nuff said.
30. Bagna cauda We made this in culinary school, and I nearly made myself sick on it. Other kids got sick on sweets, I gorged on this.
31. Wasabi peas A favorite snack.
32. Clam chowder in a sourdough bowl I love the chowder, hate the bowl. Soggy bread. Ugh.
33. Salted lassi A fine and delicious drink.
34. Sauerkraut On the farm, we made huge crocks of this every year. This fall, the tradition continues.
35. Root beer float If there was no root beer in it, I’d like it.
36. Cognacwith a fat cigar–Love the cognac, though I can no longer drink. But the cigar–euww, no. Allergic to tobacco.
37. Clotted cream tea One of the best culinary traditions in Britain.
38. Vodka jelly/Jell-O
39. Gumbo I like it best with crab, crayfish, shrimp and duck.
40. Oxtail I love it in lentil soup.
41. Curried goat I make it Pakistani, not Jamaican style.
42. Whole insects
43. Phaal
44. Goat’s milk I like it in all forms, but especially cheese.
45. Malt whisky from a bottle worth £60/$120 or more I wish I could still drink, dammit.
46. Fugu
47. Chicken tikka masala I make this all the time for work. We sell out every time, too.
48. Eel Not bad, but not a favorite.
49. Krispy Kreme original glazed doughnut Oh, yeah.
50. Sea urchin Even though the texture is squiggly, when it is good, it tastes so good, I don’t care.
51. Prickly pear
52. Umeboshi Tasty and pretty stuff.
53. Abalone
54. Paneer I cook this all the time at home and at work, and have made it from scratch. Great.
55. McDonald’s Big Mac Meal To my sorrow, I have eaten this. However, recently, I have found my stomach rejects McDonald’s food violently.
56. Spaetzle Pretty good stuff.
57. Dirty gin martini
58. Beer above 8% ABV Yeah, that was good stuff. Alas, I can no longer imbibe.
59. Poutine No, but I want to!
60. Carob chips I don’t like them, but I have eaten them. Give me chocolate, dammit, not that fake-assed “healthy” shit.
61. S’mores I was a Girl Scout, for God’s sake. I couldn’t have avoided s’mores if I wanted to.
62. Sweetbreads Oh, yes. Very tasty.
63. Kaolin In the form of kaopectate, though I suspect that is too much information and not what Andrew was talking about.
64. Currywurst No, but I want to. Must go to Berlin….
65. Durian No, but I want to. Anything described by a friend as “its like eating raspberries in a latrine” has to be experienced.
66. Frogs’ legs I like them salt-and-pepper fried Chinese style.
67. Beignets, churros, elephant ears or funnel cake It is fried dough. What is not to love?
68. Haggis
69. Fried plantain I have in laws in Miami who introduced me to Cuban food. I love the plantain.
70. Chitterlings, or andouillette No, but I have cleaned them. It is a long story, fit for a post on its own.
71. Gazpacho I’ve made several versions of this every summer for years.
72. Caviar and blini In culinary school. I wasn’t quite certain what all the fuss was about. It was sorta salty and that is all. I like salmon roe better.
73. Louche absinthe Absinthe rules. It loosens up my vocal chords and makes singing like breathing. Beautiful stuff.
74. Gjetost, or brunost
75. Roadkill
76. Baijiu
77. Hostess Fruit Pie Cherry was my favorite as a kid.
78. Snail Garlic butter makes everything good.
79. Lapsang souchong This is my second favorite tea, next to pu er.
80. Bellini I used to make these all the time when I was a bartender. They are right tasty, but I like mojitos better. And did I mention I cannot drink anymore? And that it sucks?
81. Tom yum I like tom kha gai better, though.
82. Eggs Benedict Rich, but amazingly good.
83. Pocky Love at first crunch.
84. Tasting menu at a three-Michelin-star restaurant.
85. Kobe beef Good, but not all that. No, really.
86. Hare Lagomorphs are lovely.
87. Goulash My Grandma made this every Thanksgiving along with about thirty other dishes. No, I am not kidding. We aren’t Hungarian, either.
88. Flowers I love flowers. Roses are a favorite, and I will incorporate them into whatever I can.
89. Horse I have not ever had the opportunity, but I would eat it.
90. Criollo chocolate
91. Spam I grew up in Appalachia. What do you think?
92. Soft shell crab Crab is one of the reasons I miss living in Maryland. I love me some crab.
93. Rose harissa Is rose harisssa different than regular harissa? Anyway, I cook with and eat regular harissa every week at work.
94. Catfish Fried Japanese style, catfish is divine. Just plain fried hillbilly style is pretty good, too.
95. Mole poblano I had this first in Miami at a wonderful regional Mexican restaurant. So delicious.
96. Bagel and lox My husband is one of the few Jews who doesn’t like lox, so this shiksa eats his portion. I have to fight with him over the bagels, though.
97. Lobster Thermidor Rich enough to strike you dead, but delicious.
98. Polenta Who can resist polenta?
99. Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee I like Kenyan better, but this is nothing to turn your nose up at.
100. Snake I haven’t gotten around to it is all.

I suspect that my Omnivore’s Hundred would be different. Okay, I know it would be.

Here is a taste of some of the foods/dishes I would put in my own version:

Imam bayildi (Look for a recipe in tomorrow’s post)
She-crab soup
Scallion pancakes
Ma po tofu
Shajahani biryani
Kashmiri dhingri chole
King Crab Rolls (From Sushi King in Columbia, Maryland)
really good sparkling mead or metheglyn (drink some for me, okay?)


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  1. I’ve had 72 of them. Soft shell crabs,foie gras, steak tartare,Krispy Kream would definitely be at the top of my list. I would add, hard shell blue crabs,Maryland style, Chinese BBQ ribs, ricotta cheese cake and Maryland crab cakes as well as Vaca Frita.

    Comment by Karl — September 1, 2008 #

  2. But I would spell Krispy Kreme properly. The spelling doesn’t alter the taste but it is necessary to give honor where it is due.

    Comment by Karl — September 1, 2008 #

  3. Ha ha! I posted this on my LJ a while back. Interesting to see it here.

    You should try prickly pear. As best I can describe, the pads taste like a cross between okra and artichoke hearts, and the fruit tastes like strawberry-watermelon.

    I’m afraid I just hate Krispy Kremes. Sugar and grease and that’s it. I like my fried dough to have a bit of substance, like chewing on a yummy New Orleans beignet.

    Comment by Neohippie — September 1, 2008 #

  4. Your numbering is different than the version I saw; also you’re missing some. As a result your Onmivore’s 100 has become Omnivore’s 92.

    Here’s the first 14:
    1. Venison
    2. Nettle tea
    3. Huevos rancheros
    4. Steak tartare
    5. Crocodile
    6. Black pudding
    7. Cheese fondue
    8. Carp
    9. Borscht
    10. Baba ghanoush
    11. Calamari
    12. Pho
    13. PB&J sandwich
    14. Aloo gobi

    – Harry, 80, and handicapped by a dislike of most curries and really hot foods.

    Comment by Harry — September 2, 2008 #

  5. Rose harissa is harissa with rose petals, said to be the best. So apply your #88 to your #93 and you’re golden.

    Comment by Harry — September 2, 2008 #

  6. I actually have had haggis. I had a very small bite, because I felt that living in Scotland for two years, even as a vegetarian, and not at least trying a bite would be silly.

    It’s too meaty for me, but I recommend it as something to try for anyone who likes meat; it tastes interesting.

    Somebody should make a vegetarian’s 100.

    Comment by Alexis — September 3, 2008 #

  7. I’ve tried haggis too, and didn’t care for it much. I was at a Bobbie Burns celebration.

    OH, Chicken tikka massala! I used to take my son to this great Indian restaurant when he was only 2 or 3 years old, and it was his favourite dish. It was also cute to hear him order it with perfect pronunciation!

    Comment by Maria DaCosta — September 3, 2008 #

  8. Carob has its own charms when it’s not being used as fake chocolate. Powdered carob actually makes a good secret ingredient in cocoa-based baked goods *in addition to* the cocoa–makes them taste a little deeper and darker.

    Comment by tjewell — January 6, 2010 #

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