"goat-palated people" is the best thing I've heard all day
February 21, 2019 7:49 PM   Subscribe

Sam Sanders, host of NPR's It's Been A Minute, addressed his Twitter followers
Tell me your Weirdest eating/drinking habit you had as a kid!

I’ll go first: When I was like 8 years old, I used to carry a little bottle of apple cider vinegar around wherever I went, taking a swig every now and then like a lush w/his flask.

As a child, my brother would eat sticks of butter out of the fridge, under cover of night. We were strange.
posted by Johnny Wallflower (188 comments total) 23 users marked this as a favorite
 
For a long time I enjoyed tonic water, straight.
posted by grumpybear69 at 7:55 PM on February 21 [2 favorites]


For a long time I enjoyed tonic water, straight.

...is this unusual? Soda water, sure, but tonic tastes like oranges.
posted by solarion at 7:56 PM on February 21 [7 favorites]


When I was six, I used to “dip” Nesquik chocolate drink powder like snuff, with a spoonful between the cheek & gums, having learned the practice from my Grandma who dipped Garrett snuff powder regularly.
posted by darkstar at 7:59 PM on February 21 [11 favorites]


Oh, also: mayonnaise sandwiches, when we were out of other fixins.
posted by darkstar at 8:04 PM on February 21 [8 favorites]


Nature Valley crunchy oats n' honey granola bars and A&W cream soda were lembas and miruvor to me.
posted by logicpunk at 8:05 PM on February 21 [6 favorites]


I used to keep apple seeds on a shelf in the linen closet and pretend they were Underdog Super Energy Pills. I would run in and swallow one when I was “tired”.
posted by bonobothegreat at 8:06 PM on February 21 [25 favorites]




I used to hide under the piano and eat aquarium rock salt.
posted by jamaro at 8:10 PM on February 21 [25 favorites]


I'd buy Canada Dry ginger ale at the convenience store because I thought it looked like beer, and then I'd take big beer-ish swigs and bare my teeth at passing grown-ups like this liquor really burned.
posted by Beardman at 8:10 PM on February 21 [37 favorites]


Oh, also: mayonnaise sandwiches, when we were out of other fixins.

Apple juice on the cereal when we were out of milk.

Also between my father and myself we'd go through a gallon of milk every two days at times, so we were out of milk a fair bit of the time. I've never broken a bone at least, maybe milk does do a body good. Though I could stand to lose a pound or two to say the least...
posted by RolandOfEld at 8:12 PM on February 21 [4 favorites]


Cold pizza for breakfast with a half-open can of Dr. Pepper that had gone flat but was chilled in the fridge overnight. These were my two favorite things to have on a Saturday morning growing up.
posted by Fizz at 8:12 PM on February 21 [13 favorites]


One of my earliest memories is hiding behind the easel at kindergarten and eating play-doh while crying because I had the sense I wasn't meant to eat it.
posted by solarion at 8:13 PM on February 21 [35 favorites]


Also, soft white bread slices, mustard, slice of cheese, and cheetohs mashed between. This was a thing I'd force my mom to pack in my lunch at least once a week.
posted by Fizz at 8:13 PM on February 21 [8 favorites]


Huh. Well the mustard sandwiches I was into as a small child seem positively tame in comparison.

"Cinnamon toast served rare," is a new favorite description of mine though.
posted by los pantalones del muerte at 8:16 PM on February 21 [10 favorites]


The iconic thing from my childhood was the tortilla-and-cheese, which was apparently my mom thinking that the word "quesadilla" was too foreign and my dad thinking that you couldn't rightfully call something a quesadilla if you made it in the microwave. (And neither of them, rightly, trusting me with a stove when I was in elementary and middle school.)
posted by Sequence at 8:16 PM on February 21 [8 favorites]


I ate milk chocolate powder by the spoonful. It required a special anticipatory salivation technique not to end up with a cinnamon challenge style result. It was like having a secret stash of chocolate bars in the kitchen cupboard whenever I wanted that nobody knew about.
posted by srboisvert at 8:19 PM on February 21 [11 favorites]


Cold pizza for breakfast with a half-open can of Dr. Pepper that had gone flat but was chilled in the fridge overnight. These were my two favorite things to have on a Saturday morning growing up.
posted by Fizz at 10:12 PM on February 21


So you confess to living a lie then...
posted by srboisvert at 8:20 PM on February 21 [19 favorites]


I grew up poor and often went to elementary school with no lunch or lunch money so I would end up sucking the mayonnaise out of mayonnaise packets, which were free. I did it in secret, and had to be stealth about it. I never told anyone about it until I was a freshman in high school when I told my girlfriend. After we broke up I went to see a cabaret show she and other friends were in. They did a sketch about a poor boy who only ate mayonnaise and threw mayonnaise packets into audience.

This is the first time I've told this story since. Please don't pelt me with mayonnaise.
posted by guiseroom at 8:23 PM on February 21 [122 favorites]


I used to take secret sips of Minute Maid lemon juice concentrate straight from the bottle. Fun times.
Oh boy, I also would make a snack that consisted of Carr’s table water crackers, cubes of mozzarella cheese and green cocktail olives. The weird part that the cheese became white sharks, the olives were fish, and the crackers were rescue boats. I had to eat one of each in a precise order so the fish could be rescued from sharks. I was a weird kid...not much has changed.
posted by Champagne Supernova at 8:26 PM on February 21 [13 favorites]


Bowl of Country Time Lemonade powder. Bowl of ice cubes. Dip ice cube in powder, lick off, repeat. Chomp ice cube when too small to grip.
posted by rachaelfaith at 8:31 PM on February 21 [19 favorites]


Cold pizza for breakfast with a half-open can of Dr. Pepper that had gone flat but was chilled in the fridge overnight. These were my two favorite things to have on a Saturday morning growing up.

well if you heated that dr pepper up, that wouldn't be weird at all

I have a serious sweet tooth. As a child, once I understood that frosting was basically a mix of fat and sugar, I replicated it by stirring butter and granulated sugar together as a secret snack. Never let your children do this.
posted by grandiloquiet at 8:33 PM on February 21 [9 favorites]


Cut hot dogs into third-inch medallions, arrange them on a plate into a line with the skin edges of each medallion touching its neighbors, and microwave for a minute and a half. The skins stick together where they touch, and you can move them all by moving either end. Toot-toot! Choo-choo-train hot dogs.
posted by infinitewindow at 8:33 PM on February 21 [19 favorites]


They did a sketch about a poor boy who only ate mayonnaise and threw mayonnaise packets into audience.


I am cringing so hard right now.
posted by bongo_x at 8:36 PM on February 21 [25 favorites]


> I have a serious sweet tooth. As a child, once I understood that frosting was basically a mix of fat and sugar, I replicated it by stirring butter and granulated sugar together as a secret snack. Never let your children do this.

Did you get a lot of stomachaches as a child? I once snuck a tub of cream cheese frosting into my room and ate it only to wake up in pain in the middle of the night. Not even the frosting could soothe me!

Gees, I ate a lot of white goo as a kid.
posted by guiseroom at 8:36 PM on February 21 [7 favorites]


Did the cinnamon toast rare, glad to see it get some attention.
Mayo sandwiches, check.

How about frozen orange juice with a spoon?
posted by bongo_x at 8:38 PM on February 21 [8 favorites]


Not exactly a weird food habit because I only did it once and didn't actually eat it, but I did once take a bite out of a urinal cake because I thought it was a big lolly. It was...urinal-y.
posted by turbid dahlia at 8:40 PM on February 21 [7 favorites]


I used to take secret sips of Minute Maid lemon juice concentrate straight from the bottle. Fun times.

My parents kept ReaLemon lemon juice concentrate in the fridge. I liked to pour a couple fingers into a small glass and sip on the stuff neat like it was whiskey.
posted by neckro23 at 8:41 PM on February 21 [11 favorites]


Am I the only person who's going to admit to snacking on dog food as a kid? Dry kibble only. Not the wet stuff, that would be gross.
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 8:44 PM on February 21 [12 favorites]


Also raw bacon. I am now a vegetarian.
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 8:45 PM on February 21 [4 favorites]


Did you get a lot of stomachaches as a child? I once snuck a tub of cream cheese frosting

No! I have a tragically iron-clad stomach! (I mean: obviously having chronic nausea would be terrible. But I can't help but feel like I would be a much healthier person if I got the vapors around bone marrow or whatever. Butter+sugar was a repeat snack!)
posted by grandiloquiet at 8:45 PM on February 21 [2 favorites]


How about frozen orange juice with a spoon?

OMG you've just reminded me of one of my first housemates who used to do this to me when I was a dirt poor student. I got so frustrated—I was broke, dammit!— I eventually reached the point where I'd top it off with water and put it back in the freezer out of sheer spite.  That finally got her attention.  Boy she got mad—and she never even bought the stuff!

Flames! Flames on the side of my face! Grrrr.
posted by los pantalones del muerte at 8:46 PM on February 21 [9 favorites]


Y’all just reminded me: I used to sneak into the cabinet of my parents’ cocktail fixins and would eat packets of banana daiquiri mix powder like Lik-M-Aid candy.
posted by darkstar at 8:48 PM on February 21 [13 favorites]


Onions out of hand like an apple. No fooling. I thought they were delicious and I liked how they made my nose tingle.

Weird bulk ingredients straight and as is. Powdered milk, peanut butter, dry TVP chunks, a box of brown sugar, so many random things. Even cocoa powder or baking chocolate, maybe dipped in sugar. I still sometimes eat a spoonful of hot cocoa mix when making cocoa.

Peanut butter and veggie mayo sandwiches, like all natural health food store peanut butter and Saffrole oil mayo on wheat bread.

Condiment sandwiches. In particular I liked the mayo-ketchup-relish combo all mixed up like big Mac sauce. Bonus points for three slices of bread with sauce between each.

On preview, yeah I did the butter and sugar as frosting thing too. It's how I first started learning how to bake cookies and stuff. I think I saw a chocolate chip cookie recipe on a bag of baking chips that I was eating like candy and realized that creaming butter and sugar together was part of the way to making cookies and I only needed a few more ingredients.

Slightly less weird then all of this: spending my allowance on giant boxes of instant pancake mix and fake maple syrup and just standing in the kitchen eating endless pancakes, one at a time and drenched in syrup while the next one cooks until bursting. And then taking a nap and eating dinner.
posted by loquacious at 8:48 PM on February 21 [10 favorites]


My grandma used to call me rabbit because I'd eat canned corn straight out of the can, mixed vegetables straight out of the can, raw lettuce, raw carrots, raw cucumbers, raw red bell peppers, pickles...obviously, this is a pretty great, mildly weird food habit to have as a kid. I still love vegetables, though now as an adult I'm more likely to consume raw vegetables in huge salads, which a friend of mine calls my enormous raw stir fries.

I also put Nesquick chocolate powder on top of vanilla ice cream, which honestly? Pretty great. I recreated that delightful mixture last year with hot chocolate mix and vanilla ice cream, when I was craving chocolate ice cream and didn't have any, and it's still tasty. I really weirdly like the sandy, grainy contrast of the powder and the creamy and smooth ice cream.

Also, sometimes I'd pour some salt into the palm of my hand and just eat it. Same with powdered sugar.
posted by yasaman at 8:53 PM on February 21 [7 favorites]


…cocktail fixins and would eat packets of banana daiquiri mix powder like Lik-M-Aid candy.

Haha.  Oh hell yeah!  For me it was packets of whiskey sour mix. So deliciously tart!

Wow, that memory was dredged up from some deep recesses.
posted by los pantalones del muerte at 8:54 PM on February 21 [7 favorites]


Extra firm tofu, cubed. Soy sauce poured on top. My Japanese spouse thinks this was weird - I should have used soft tofu and bonito flakes.
posted by temancl at 8:54 PM on February 21 [9 favorites]


Whenever we'd go to the type of restaurant (IHOP, Cracker Barrel, etc) that had those disposable serving-size cups of shelf-stable aseptic coffee creamer, I would drink all of them straight from the cups.

And usually ask the server to bring more.
posted by nightrecordings at 8:55 PM on February 21 [10 favorites]


So we had bagged milk when I was a kid in Ontario (they still do, I just don't live there any more...). And as a lazy teenager I wanted to drink a glass of milk after school without having to go over and get a glass but it's kinda hard to drink from a plastic floppy bag. So I perfected the technique of simply tilting my head back and pouring milk straight into my mouth, which I swallowed with my mouth wide open. I could down half a bag of milk (which is like maybe two cups of milk) in about a minute, standing in front of the fridge with the door still open.
posted by GuyZero at 8:56 PM on February 21 [12 favorites]


I still like cold tofu, any kind, especially extra firm.

Also, sometimes I microwave a plate full of baby potatoes and treat them kind of like a bunch of hard-boiled eggs. I will eat a few warm out of hand with salt sprinkled on them between bites, then let the rest cool for later to snack on. A good plain cold potato almost seems to have more flavor when cooled down after cooking, like more earthy and less starchy.
posted by loquacious at 9:03 PM on February 21 [7 favorites]


Pickles & Salsa!
posted by mannequito at 9:08 PM on February 21 [3 favorites]


I used to cut cherry tomatoes in half, 'glue' them back together using hot English mustard, and eat the result. Tangy! Sinus-clearing!
posted by Panthalassa at 9:19 PM on February 21 [12 favorites]


I also put Nesquick chocolate powder on top of vanilla ice cream, which honestly? Pretty great.

Substitute Milo for Nesquik and this is a straight-up classic Australian kids' dessert.
posted by Panthalassa at 9:21 PM on February 21 [8 favorites]


Ohhh yeah when I was a kid I'd eat the nestle quik powder straight from the can by the spoonful, so good. I also liked making popsicles from this one kind of tea with a bunch of orange and cinnamon oil in it so it was very sweet and spicy. I'd make it strong, pour it into a glass with a spoon in it, and then freeze.
posted by drinkyclown at 9:22 PM on February 21 [6 favorites]


Pickle relish, straight from the jar. I could not resist it.
posted by praemunire at 9:24 PM on February 21 [5 favorites]


Take a sandwich toaster, right? Put a tonne of sugar in it, then the bread butter side outwards like you're meant to, tin of sardines in tomato sauce as filling. That was my go-to lunch every Saturday, when I got the chance.
posted by I'm always feeling, Blue at 9:27 PM on February 21 [3 favorites]


Not myself, but speaking of creamer we did have to eventually hide the ½-and-½ for our church's coffee hour because the kids would get at it and drink it down first otherwise.
posted by traveler_ at 9:35 PM on February 21 [3 favorites]


-- Hot milk with sugar melted in.
--Salt, straight from the shaker or the canister.
--Peanut butter on anything possible. This was approx 2/3 of my meals until age 14. Most of the time, I had a "peanut butter on top," which was just toast with (gooey, melty, molten) peanut butter on it.
--I am still very particular about how I want my Chef Boyardee Cheese Ravioli, thank you very much!
--My daycare served us butter sandwiches and collard greens and I found them both horrible as a small child. But as an adult, I've come around.

My parents were meanwhile eating raw hamburger on rye, head cheese salad, various kinds of liver, cold beets with hardboiled egg, etc, so I rebelled by being very tame whenever I had a choice. I even refused to drink the (watered) wine and (milky) coffee they gave me in my own little glasses. They were aghast, though, when I wanted ketchup in the house so I could use it on my eggs. They still find ketchup on eggs completely disgusting.
posted by rue72 at 9:39 PM on February 21 [7 favorites]


Oh and lots of food that was purposefully not mixed right. Still-lumpy condensed cream of mushroom soup. Campbell's tomato soup left to sit too long on the stove so that it makes a nice skin. Hot chocolate that is basically a cup of milk poured over dry chocolate powder, so that afterward you could eat the still-somewhat dry and clumpy powder out of the bottom of the mug with a spoon.
posted by rue72 at 9:42 PM on February 21 [5 favorites]


Yes! Taking delight in eating the powder was such a kid thing!
posted by I'm always feeling, Blue at 9:48 PM on February 21 [3 favorites]


When I was a young child I thought you were supposed to eat fried eggs with mustard on top of them, because that's how my Dad ate them. And not just any old way either, you had to cut the fried eggs into strips, and then cross-cut the strips, so that the yolk ran out over all the cut-up pieces of egg white, and then put the mustard on.

I have no idea where or how my Dad started doing that, but it got me some odd looks when I was a kid in other people's houses.
posted by yhbc at 10:17 PM on February 21 [4 favorites]


There was the odd spoonful of straight ketchup every now and again.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 10:21 PM on February 21 [3 favorites]


Lemons, sliced like apples and dipped in sugar. Then when I was a little older, jam or nutella toasties, and spoonfuls of peanut butter wrapped in lettuce.

I also liked to make sandwiches two or three layers thick filled with anything we had that could feasably go in a sandwich - cheese, salad, mayo, ham, meat paste, peanut butter - all at once. I should do that again sometime...
posted by HypotheticalWoman at 10:23 PM on February 21 [4 favorites]


I used to ask my mom to open up graham cracker boxes to air them out so they'd get stale the way I liked
posted by prize bull octorok at 10:31 PM on February 21 [13 favorites]


Oh I forgot to mention. Grass. I used to casually eat grass. Like the turf at school (when I thought nobody was looking). I am kind of worried not to see this anywhere in the Twitter thread, given some of what's being mentioned...
posted by Panthalassa at 11:02 PM on February 21 [6 favorites]


My mother would prep a mug of what she considered weak American coffee for me during elementary school. It was sugar, powdered creamer and freeze dried coffee. I only got chilled Vietnamese espresso on the weekends. Anyway, I ate the powders straight. Because I was jonesing for that sweet taste I would take spoonfuls of powdered creamer when no one was looking.

Potato chips with ketchup were my goto sneaky snack when everyone was asleep. I would use paper napkins so no one would know. Of course, as a teenager, there were potato chip sandwiches on squishy white bread. Other things I would sneak: dried shrimp and homemade pork cracklings that were used for cooking.
posted by jadepearl at 11:13 PM on February 21 [3 favorites]


In the U.K. Jello doesn't come in granulated packets, but in cubes that are melted and diluted. So, essentially super concentrated Jello. They were delicious...much better than pointlessly making them into full sized watery Jello!

Also peanut butter and branston pickle sandwiches, but i still eat those.
posted by Jon Mitchell at 11:39 PM on February 21 [7 favorites]


I used to absent-mindedly tear off tiny pieces of newspaper and eat them.
posted by Vesihiisi at 11:40 PM on February 21 [8 favorites]


A 10 oz. bag of potato chips with a cube of butter for a dip was a standard after school snack for me. I also used to drink the marinating oil of artichoke hearts or pour it over crumbled saltines and eat it with a spoon.

I loved the strange crust-like texture you could get by spreading honey thickly on plain untoasted white bread and letting it soak in for a few minutes.

I used to chew fresh road tar because chewing gum wasn't chewy (or bitter) enough.

Every Christmas I would save all the pith from between the meats of the multitude of unshelled pecans I ate during the day and eat that at night before I went to bed. It was the most bitter thing I can remember eating, and it made my tongue feel like it was coated in vacuum cleaner dust.
posted by jamjam at 11:42 PM on February 21 [11 favorites]


Artificial sweetener. Like, on its own. I felt so badass.
posted by Omnomnom at 11:53 PM on February 21 [2 favorites]


tonic tastes like oranges

Is this a thing—like how for some people cilantro tastes of soap?

Tonic tastes of quinine, of course, a flavor I always assumed was virtually universally thought to be rather nasty at first taste, then—maybe later—an aquired taste.
posted by she's not there at 12:10 AM on February 22 [7 favorites]


Potato chips or twisties squashed inbetween two slices of buttered bread. Milo (chocolate drink powder) eaten straight from the can with a spoon. Mmmmm, good times.
posted by Jubey at 12:22 AM on February 22 [4 favorites]


-3 slices soft white bread
-nibble off crusts on all 4 sides
-fold in half
-fold in half again
-squish into a dense doughy cube
-enjoy
posted by maggieb at 12:45 AM on February 22 [18 favorites]


> I still like cold tofu, any kind, especially extra firm.

Nothing wrong with cold tofu! My dad used to dump an entire package of tofu onto a plate, dice it into cubes, pour some soy sauce over it, sprinkle a few spring onions and that was a nice afternoon snack. Sometimes he'd add century eggs if he really wanted a treat.
posted by movicont at 1:07 AM on February 22 [5 favorites]


Newspaper, check.
Grass, check.

I also used to like tearing out a thread from my bath towel with my teeth and chewing on that for hours.

In actual food, though, I used to eat kiwi fruit and feijoas with their skins on. I liked the contrast between sweet and bitter, and chewy vs soft.

After school I used to get cream crackers, layer on sliced tomatoes, wait until they were soggy, add a layer of cheese, then microwave until they turned into something vaguely resembling lasagne.
posted by lollusc at 1:34 AM on February 22 [8 favorites]


And as a lazy teenager I wanted to drink a glass of milk after school without having to go over and get a glass

And this reminded me that when we used to have powdered milk, I was so lazy I'd just put a spoonful of powder in my mouth, sip some water, and swish it all around.
posted by lollusc at 1:36 AM on February 22 [5 favorites]


I used to use my teeth to scrap clean the soft white
pith of an orange i was eating. No rind was left unscraped.
posted by quazichimp at 1:47 AM on February 22 [9 favorites]


Ok, regarding cold tofu: with soy sauce, and *sesame oil.* Yum.
posted by sacchan at 2:49 AM on February 22 [7 favorites]


I used to steal the Serrano peppers from the fridge at night . Sometimes I ate them with butter. One time I got into what I thought was milk which went bad. It WAS in a milk bottle. Turned out to be pulque. Pulque will get you drunk! Very drunk!
posted by Katjusa Roquette at 3:04 AM on February 22 [6 favorites]


For me it was also about procedure. Take saltine crackers and put a layer of soft butter, then two slices of mild cheddar. Then flip it over, and carefully press on the cheese to extrude the butter through the holes and only then is it ready for eating. In front of cartoons.
posted by parki at 3:30 AM on February 22 [7 favorites]


I have always craved salt and vinegar. If we had salt and vinegar but there was nothing to put it on -- sometimes the cupboards were Old Mother Hubbard's -- I would sprinkle salt on a plate, pour some vinegar on it, and dab away at it with my finger. Now that I think back, I have even put salt and vinegar on a napkin and eaten the napkin. These days, I put more salt and vinegar on french fries, salads, and sandwiches than any five or ten people ought to do. It may kill me, but I'll die licking the salt and vinegar off my lips.
posted by pracowity at 3:49 AM on February 22 [14 favorites]


I was obsessed with cod liver oil capsules as a child. My grandmother kept a bottle of them in her dining room and I would demand one as soon as I entered the house. She would always laugh and tell me to go ahead. I would bite into the capsule, enjoying the sensation of the oil bursting out, then chew on the slightly sweet outer covering. To tell you the truth, I wouldn't mind a couple right now.
posted by peacheater at 4:07 AM on February 22 [7 favorites]


So, essentially super concentrated Jello. They were delicious

We ate cubes of jelly all the time. My Mum said they were good for your nails. She used to eat icing sandwiches - cake icing on white bread with butter - and she also made us Mars bar sandwiches for school. Hmmm I wonder where my lifelong sugar addiction was rooted...

When she went out for the evening I sometimes made the mix for Rice Crispie buns. So basically melt lots of cooking chocolate, stir it in to a large bowl of Rice Crispies, and then I'd just eat that warm instead of actually doing the "make the buns" step.

I used to absent-mindedly tear off tiny pieces of newspaper and eat them

Until this moment I had totally forgot that I used to eat paper all the time! I used to tear corners off my notebooks in school and eat them. Also, when I was learning the violin aged about 10/11 we had sponges underneath the violin, attached with elastic bands, to cushion between it and our shoulders (I don't know if this is a usual thing to do when kids are learning the violin or just a thing our teacher got us to do). I used to bite chunks out of the sponges and eat them. I loved the texture. That cannot be good for a kid. I must have needed a break from the sugar.
posted by billiebee at 4:08 AM on February 22 [7 favorites]


As a kid? Ketchup. On. Bloody. Everything.
Thankfully, I grew out of that by the time high school started.
posted by Thorzdad at 4:11 AM on February 22 [3 favorites]


prize bull octorok's stale graham crackers reminded me of another-

I used to love going to sleepovers at others people's houses because it meant waking up the next morning to eat the stale Cheez Doodles that no one had bothered to close up the night before.

I got a lot of weird looks from both parents and peers for being a teenage girl who was awake at 6am, reading a book and munching on stale Doodles.
posted by rachaelfaith at 4:25 AM on February 22 [7 favorites]


Pesto with a spoon. Also, I would squeeze out marzipan from the plastic tube it came in directly into my mouth.
posted by thivaia at 4:50 AM on February 22 [3 favorites]


So we had bagged milk when I was a kid in Ontario (they still do, I just don't live there any more...). And as a lazy teenager I wanted to drink a glass of milk after school without having to go over and get a glass but it's kinda hard to drink from a plastic floppy bag. So I perfected the technique of simply tilting my head back and pouring milk straight into my mouth, which I swallowed with my mouth wide open. I could down half a bag of milk (which is like maybe two cups of milk) in about a minute, standing in front of the fridge with the door still open.

That's not weird. That's just Canadian.

My brother and I used to do this is a race. I could just pour the an entire bag of milk down my throat. Then we would walk around laughing that we could hear the milk in our stomachs. Our poor mother had to buy so much milk. We had bags stacked like logs in the freezer (and boy do you have to be careful not to accidentally knock a corner off a frozen bag of milk!)
posted by srboisvert at 4:50 AM on February 22 [5 favorites]


I used to eat a lot of things straight from the jar... and still do. When I was a kid, my dad would put butter and Tang on bread and make Tang toast. Not a hit with me, but his pizza sandwiches were great- salami and a slice of cheese on bread, with ketchup, salt and pepper on top, in the toaster oven. Next generation: my youngest tried sardines in mustard sauce when she was two and loved it! She still eats it when she goes off her vegan regimen occasionally.
posted by Miss Cellania at 4:53 AM on February 22 [5 favorites]


Am I the only person who's going to admit to snacking on dog food as a kid? Dry kibble only. Not the wet stuff, that would be gross.

I'll own up, Johnny Wallflower, except my weakness was for Meow Mix. Tender Vittles were also available (remember Tender Vittles? lol) but too soft. Meow Mix, in addition to have a great theme song and all kinds of cats on the box, was also satisfyingly crunchy. I attribute it's superior nutritional profile to my unusual (for my family) size.
posted by some loser at 4:59 AM on February 22 [5 favorites]


Peanut butter and veggie mayo sandwiches, like all natural health food store peanut butter and Saffrole oil mayo on wheat bread.


loquacious: I thought *I* had invented this strange, wonderful sandwich back in the days before "veggie mayo" was even a thing. So with REAL mayo. It was one of those things I decided to experiment one time after school, having found no meats or cheeses or jam in the house. I may have to make one this weekend.. I'm thinking a nice light rye bread and some organic peanut butter with home made mayo. Perhaps with some bread & butter pickles as a side.
posted by some loser at 5:04 AM on February 22 [1 favorite]


I used to keep apple seeds on a shelf in the linen closet and pretend they were Underdog Super Energy Pills. I would run in and swallow one when I was “tired

Oh... My... Well, I guess "bonobothegreat", if it was only 1 at a time - and didn't chew it - you were probably safe - maybe even built-up a bit of an immunity...
posted by jkaczor at 5:05 AM on February 22 [1 favorite]


Frozen uncooked hot dogs, like meat popsicles. I shudder to think of it now.
posted by Cuke at 5:07 AM on February 22 [5 favorites]


dipped tang like lik-m-aid.
posted by Dressed to Kill at 5:10 AM on February 22 [4 favorites]


Frozen uncooked hot dogs, like meat popsicles. I shudder to think of it now.
I did this too.
posted by all about eevee at 5:27 AM on February 22 [1 favorite]


An open-face grape jelly sandwich just didn't have quite enough *zing*, you know? So, sprinkle on a spoonful of Tang...
Also, seconding Nestle's Quik by the spoonful. Likewise sugar, if cubes were not around.

So many cavities.
posted by coppertop at 5:30 AM on February 22 [3 favorites]


Grazed on oxalis (wood sorrel) growing in the yard while playing in the grass. Also, those tiny wild onions that used to grow as weeds.

Now, I pat myself on the back for being an early forager, but at the time, it was basically just “oh, here’s a bit of weeds with that funky taste”.
posted by darkstar at 5:33 AM on February 22 [9 favorites]


Am I the only person who's going to admit to snacking on dog food as a kid? Dry kibble only. Not the wet stuff, that would be gross.

I never tried them but my god Gaines-Burgers were so tempting it was if they were designed to lure me.
posted by srboisvert at 5:48 AM on February 22 [9 favorites]


Oh, also: mayonnaise sandwiches, when we were out of other fixins.

We were always out of mayonnaise, because my little sister would eat it with a spoon.
posted by StickyCarpet at 5:55 AM on February 22 [2 favorites]


One of the first things that my mom taught me to cook for myself -- so that I would stop begging her for some -- were plain Cheerios, toasted in melted butter (unsalted in our house, and different from margarine) in a sauté pan and then salted. Like popcorn, only with a better smell.

Sweet tooth? Not this guy!
posted by wenestvedt at 6:06 AM on February 22 [7 favorites]


Well, I don't feel so unique for eating mayonnaise sandwiches now. Ketchup sandwiches, too. And dill pickle juice from the jar. And uncooked hot dogs (which I still enjoy occasionally), though not frozen ones.
posted by briank at 6:08 AM on February 22 [3 favorites]


I would eat pickles and then drink the leftover liquid from the jar.
posted by nolnacs at 6:10 AM on February 22 [5 favorites]


I used to drink prune juice because of Worf.
posted by Strange Interlude at 6:17 AM on February 22 [7 favorites]


I used to enjoy squishing big marshmallows between my thumbs and pointer fingers, twisting it over and over until it became a sort of stretchy, shiny white taffy. I still do this if the opportunity arises!
posted by sucre at 6:18 AM on February 22 [4 favorites]


My favorite sandwich I could make myself as a kid was white bread with a slice of Kraft American and a slice of baloney on top of that. I’d put it in the toaster oven and watch it carefully. The baloney would constrict and curl into a cup shape with a puddle of baloney juice inside. I’d pull it out before it collapsed in on itself and while the cheese was bubbly but not toasted. Then I’d put a piece of plain toasted bread over the top. Wash it down with a glass of extra strength Tang. The memory is still delicious but I could never eat that today.
posted by amanda at 6:28 AM on February 22 [2 favorites]


OMG... Everything in this thread and more... Apple seeds, peanut butter molten toast... Peanut butter and honey... sometimes with banana slices... Molten Cheez-whiz toast... Cheez-whiz on celery (didn't like the peanut butter option).

Anything that was a powder (tang, instant chocolate milk) would become something for dipping (maybe just a finger, if it was "mine, all mine"...)

Juniper berries... Grass, any kind of pine needle... "Ulcer sandwich" (all the hot sauce condiments mixed together, no other fillings). Bologna and ketchup sandwich (liked the ketchup, however the "meat" made me gag - actually... sometimes just ketchup)... Tuna straight from the can (still do that one)... Pickle juice straight-up... Sauerkraut, cold in a bowl with a spoon... Liverwurst sandwiches (open-faced, on rye with mustard...), that really weird granular pumpernickel bread with butter (open-faced)... Kraft processed cheese slices (on their own)... Any kind of pickled thing... sweet, sour, tart, garlicky, hot... Smoked oysters, sardines or anchovies, straight from the can...

Nibbling gooey tiny chunks of marshmallow, slowly...
posted by jkaczor at 6:31 AM on February 22 [2 favorites]


I used to love to pick and eat what we called lemon grass (which I just looked up as as of two seconds ago and now know is actually creeping sorrel) by the side of the road.

I also ate paper until about second grade. I only stopped because I generally used to eat the thin yellow lined paper (which was much softer / pulpier), and one day in second grade I bragged that I ate paper and someone gave me a whole page of thick white typing paper (which was way tougher to chew and break down), and I almost couldn't do it. But it put a bad paper taste into my sense memory that killed the need to eat paper from that point on.

I would also eat plain spaghetti, and straight (pasta-less) meat sauce, but never the two together. Never!
posted by Mchelly at 6:39 AM on February 22 [4 favorites]


Oh and whenever I had ice cream at a bowl at home I would stir it and stir it and stir it , saying "amaaaazing chocolate..." until it was magically turned into soup. Then I would eat it.
posted by Mchelly at 6:40 AM on February 22 [9 favorites]


My kid eats so well. I’m sure things will get weird once she has even greater access to the cupboards and cooking tools. When she was about six, I had to return something to a neighbor and we had a big talk about me leaving her at home for 5 minutes. Apparently, as soon as I left, she made a beeline for the sugar dish. I knew because there was basically a trail of sugar Hanna-Barbera-style from the sugar bowl, down the kitchen counter and onto the floor. I called her in and she looked so embarrassed. And then she confessed to eating some butter. Sure enough, ragged bite of butter out of the fridge butter. I laughed and asked her how she felt. “I don’t feel good!” I had her go lie down for a bit. I kind of felt proud of her, though. Taking that moment to just kid-crazy-raid the kitchen.
posted by amanda at 6:41 AM on February 22 [9 favorites]


I used to run water into my toothbrush so that the bristles would sort of be holding some water, and then I would sip that water and pretend it was a very fancy and delicate way of drinking tiny amounts of some fancy drink, probably champagne.
posted by aka burlap at 6:42 AM on February 22 [15 favorites]


Paper... so much paper... My grandfather would scold me endlessly - he worked at a paper pulp mill, would tell me stories about how guys wouldn't bother finding a bathroom, just piss in the vat... Didn't scare me, sorry Rudy...
posted by jkaczor at 6:44 AM on February 22 [5 favorites]


Oh - and when they introduced liquid instant chocolate milk concentrate.... Squirting that straight into ones mouth, was like finding the nectar of the gods... No gritty, granular aftertaste, just sugary "chocolate".
posted by jkaczor at 6:45 AM on February 22 [2 favorites]


"Cheese jelly." Ricotta cheese and strawberry jam mixed up in a mug. I don't think I have ever made it myself though, mom always made it for us. Just a two-minute bit of mommy magic.
posted by Anticipation Of A New Lover's Arrival, The at 6:50 AM on February 22 [4 favorites]


Also, if you carefully pull up a tall stem of grass so that it sort of slides out of its sheath instead of just breaking off, the yellow-white bit down at the bottom there is surprisingly tender and delicious.
posted by Anticipation Of A New Lover's Arrival, The at 6:56 AM on February 22 [18 favorites]


I used to love to take two pieces of bread, and dip them (torn into pieces of course), in the sauce from Chef Boyardee's Ravioli and Spagettios. This was a must-do before eating the actual product, lol. I find that I still love to do this with soup.
posted by annieb at 7:04 AM on February 22 [2 favorites]


Grass, paper, dog biscuits, raw onions, sticks, dry instant, tonic, clover, all check.

My sister and I used to treat apple & blackcurrant juice as alcohol, pretending to get what we thought drunk was as we did it.

I still eat ants.
posted by AnhydrousLove at 7:06 AM on February 22 [9 favorites]


Nothing particularly weird, because I was a very picky eater as a kid, but my favorite breakfast as a very young kid was a bunch of cheerios in a long tupperware container, eaten directly from the container (no hands) while on all fours and neighing, because I was a horse eating oats out of my trough.
posted by ChuraChura at 7:09 AM on February 22 [13 favorites]


I still eat ants.

Good for you. Fuck ants.
posted by Anticipation Of A New Lover's Arrival, The at 7:10 AM on February 22 [23 favorites]


Also, if you carefully pull up a tall stem of grass so that it sort of slides out of its sheath instead of just breaking off, the yellow-white bit down at the bottom there is surprisingly tender and delicious.

Yes! I used to do this, and called them "tubers". I'm sure I read that in a book somewhere, and it seemed like what that part of the grass should be. If you pull the petals out of clover flowers, the pointy ends of where they connect to the plant are sweet - I'd chew on those a lot too.

+1 to kneading marshmallows before eating, for maximum stickiness.

I used to take slices of white bread and smush them between coasters to see how thin I could get it, then roll that up and eat it , sort of like a tortilla. Or, homemade communion wafers. I was disappointed when I finally got confirmed and tried a wafer that they pretty much just dissolved.

When we had burgers for dinner, I'd slide my plate over to my dad, and have him compress it as much as possible (a slow, steady compression, not like mashing it roughly) before eating.

I used to eat hamster food. It's mostly seeds of different sorts, and wasn't that bad. This idea also came from a book somewhere, explaining how people ate millet. I wanted to try it, and the only readily available source was what I was feeding my small rodents.
posted by Fig at 7:15 AM on February 22 [10 favorites]


I used to eat ketchup straight out of the packet. Actually, I still do it, who am I kidding
posted by Automocar at 7:22 AM on February 22 [3 favorites]


If you pull the petals out of clover flowers, the pointy ends of where they connect to the plant are sweet

Heck, nothing wrong with just an entire clover flower as-is. I'd put that on my salad today, if I had them in the fridge.
posted by Anticipation Of A New Lover's Arrival, The at 7:28 AM on February 22 [8 favorites]


When my Dad was a kid, he would take an entire loaf of Wonder Bread—has to be Wonder Bread, which as you may know is approximately 99% air—and smash it, inside the bag, into a sort of doughy puck which he would then eat plain.
posted by Anticipation Of A New Lover's Arrival, The at 7:29 AM on February 22 [9 favorites]


I grew up in a pretty strict house and didn't do much of this kind of stuff. But family members:

My brother would try every food we fed the dog, to make sure it was good enough. Not sure what his criteria were.

My grandfathers were apparently the sort of Jewish men of that generation who ate sour cream mixed with cottage cheese. That's it, with a spoon, not as a dip. Blargh.
posted by wellred at 7:40 AM on February 22 [4 favorites]


Another pickle juice chugger here, in my teen years. Also squirreled away big blocks of Velveeta for myself as a young child; I didn't understand that it had to be kept wrapped, so occasionally I'd forget about a block and find it later in my underwear drawer, hardened to inedibility. When I was older, I'd occasionally snack on dry dog food because I liked the texture.

Also, even though I didn't have pica, at one point as a young child I ate dirt, thinking that it was the source for vegetables so it had to be nutritious as well. I quit after vomiting mud onto my grandma's kitchen floor.
posted by Halloween Jack at 7:40 AM on February 22 [6 favorites]


Grass, clover, dandelions, and the roots of Queen Anne's Lace, due to too much exposure to My Side of the Mountain at a tender age. The corners off of a fair number of my books, for a while. Pencil erasers. Lipton Lemon Iced Tea Mix straight out of the container by the spoonful, when I could get away with it.
posted by merriment at 7:42 AM on February 22 [4 favorites]


Wait, isn't Queen Anne's Lace toxic? I was always taught that it was.
posted by Anticipation Of A New Lover's Arrival, The at 7:44 AM on February 22 [1 favorite]


From Wikipedia: "Like the cultivated carrot, the D. carota root is edible while young, but it quickly becomes too woody to consume. The flowers are sometimes battered and fried. The leaves are also edible except in large quantities." Also, you have to know your wild plants, because it's visually similar to, whoops, hemlock.
posted by Halloween Jack at 7:47 AM on February 22 [6 favorites]


The root is edible when it's young! The leaves are toxic, though, and you want to make sure you're not eating hemlock instead, which it resembles. (On preview, what Halloween Jack said!)
posted by merriment at 7:48 AM on February 22 [3 favorites]


Chewable vitamin C tablets by the handful.

Ramen noodle flavor packets, straight.
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 7:58 AM on February 22 [1 favorite]


Lemon juice. Straight - no chaser.
posted by absalom at 7:58 AM on February 22 [2 favorites]


Whole cloves. MMMmm numb!
posted by InkaLomax at 8:04 AM on February 22 [5 favorites]


Oh and lots of food that was purposefully not mixed right.

My family made Bisquick pancakes a lot; I would often request mine to be "lumpy" - not stirred well, so there were lumps of pure Bisquick powder scattered throughout the final pancake.
posted by NMcCoy at 8:09 AM on February 22 [6 favorites]


Long before cookie dough in ice cream was a thing, the freezer in my house was often full of bags of pre-portioned dough balls for baking cookies at moderately industrial scale (for reasons). So anyways, as a teenager I thought frozen cookie dough chunks were basically the best possible late-night snack, and way easier than turning on the oven and like, baking them.
posted by tocts at 8:13 AM on February 22 [3 favorites]


Also, at a younger age, yeah, whatever was around, on bread. Whatever was around. Mayo sandwich, ketchup sandwich, etc. Also I still make cinnamon toast on occasion and it's just like, more butter than you can imagine on lightly toasted bread, so that I can then stick more sugar and cinnamon than you can imagine to it (though you have to shake it off so all that's left is the wet stuck-on stuff, not the dry stuff that will fall off once you try to eat it).
posted by tocts at 8:15 AM on February 22 [2 favorites]


Cold Spaghetti-Os. Cold Oscar Meyer hot dogs. (not together).

I loved eating plain noodles and decided I'd try to make my own by putting dry spaghetti noodles + water into a clean jar and leaving it on the radiator in my room. It didn't work.

Also when I got an Easy Bake Oven I ate the brownie mix without baking it.

Kool Aid + sugar in a plastic baggie, as a snack on the bus. We'd all have vividly red or blue tongues and fingers.
posted by castlebravo at 8:15 AM on February 22 [2 favorites]


You know, if we all ate ants…

…there would still be a shitload of ants.
posted by Anticipation Of A New Lover's Arrival, The at 8:32 AM on February 22 [7 favorites]


This is a fun thread!

I still have a weird fondness both for uncooked dry ramen noodles, broken up with a spoon and eaten from a styrofoam cup and for un-heated, unmixed condensed Campbell's cream of mushroom soup. (The former I only eat on trains and hotel rooms in the middle of the night when there's no hot water. The later I haven't actually eaten since I was 7, but I remember it every time I buy fancy artisan mushroom soup at restaurants.)

I can't bake a chocolate thing without throwing a few teaspoons of unsweetened cocoa powder into my mouth, which has been my habit since I could hold a spoon. I've more or less given up on taking swigs of Vanilla Extract, now that I can buy much cheaper alcohol that's nearly as interesting and much cheaper. But I still put six times as much Vanilla into my hot toddy as I'd serve to a guest or spouse.

On preview - unsweetened coolaid, tapped from the packet straight into your mouth, is something I'd completely forgotten about. The cheek-watering memory brings me immediately back to hanging around the concrete retainer wall at the back of my elementary school. It's not all that different from the chili powder and sour powder the ice-cream trucks sold, I guess. That and chewing on dry alka-seltzer tablets are on the list of things I delighted in and counted pennies to buy as a kid but haven't thought about in decades.
posted by eotvos at 8:34 AM on February 22 [3 favorites]


annieb: I used to love to take two pieces of bread, and dip them (torn into pieces of course), in the sauce from Chef Boyardee's Ravioli and Spagettios.

Leftover spaghetti sauce was best used up by layering a slice of toast, some sauce, another slice of toast, and more sauce.

Ah, carbs: I love you so!
posted by wenestvedt at 8:35 AM on February 22 [3 favorites]


You know, if we all ate ants…

*They* are working on it... Every few months I hear a flurry of radio/news pieces about how insect protein is the future, so good for the environment, economically sound ... and supposedly tasty too... Already being use in animal feed and pet food... My cynical nature says that *they* are grooming us slowly into acceptance with these news stories, to prepare us for our "grim-dark-non-meathook-dystopian-future".
posted by jkaczor at 8:37 AM on February 22 [1 favorite]


Why only add sauce when you can butter a slice of white bread and then put your spaghetti + sauce right on it and fold it and eat it like a spaghetti sandwich taco?

not that I've ever done that like a million times growing up ...
posted by tocts at 8:38 AM on February 22 [3 favorites]


On the principle that I wouldn't ask the babies to eat an food I hadn't tried myself, I sampled a lot of baby food. And even though I often ate a cold hot dog when I was a kid, those Gerber severed-pinkie-finger-lookin' "turkey finger" meat stick things that all of my kids loved were gross. I suppose after the blandness of formula the sudden burst of salt and meat must have been a revelation, but...ugh.

Sorry, kids.
posted by wenestvedt at 8:39 AM on February 22 [2 favorites]


The pith of oranges! Peel a nice big naval orange, then eat the pith from the back of the skin of the orange, something about it is just what my body wants every so often.
posted by Static Vagabond at 8:43 AM on February 22 [1 favorite]


When my parents had people over they would serve potato chips in a wicker-ish serving basket, apparently no cloth or paper-napkin lining.

*licking the bottom of those baskets the next morning, yum*
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 8:45 AM on February 22 [2 favorites]


I'm glad I wasn't the only child who wished for a salt lick. I used to sneak the rock salt used for the ice cream maker out of the pantry and suck on it till it was gone. Mmmmm.
posted by fiercecupcake at 8:45 AM on February 22 [3 favorites]


You know, if we all ate ants…
I'm entirely only board with eating insects. (Chapulines and sal de gusano are great. Meal worms were less great, but worth doing in context.) But, most of the ants I've met smell absolutely awful. Can you eat ants without the sense that you're chewing on creosote?
posted by eotvos at 8:45 AM on February 22 [2 favorites]


Frozen corn, eaten out of a bowl like ice cream. Frozen mini ravioli, nuked juuuust long enough to take the frost off them. Both of them, I eat to this day. They're easy, quick meals with no prep time.

Ok fine, also when I was a kid my friend had a habit of slathering herself in cocoa butter and I insisted on licking her arm because cocoa butter = cocoa = chocolate, so it must taste good, right?? (Answer: no, not really, but I kept trying)
posted by Hold your seahorses at 8:50 AM on February 22 [3 favorites]


Another paper-eater here! I had strong opinions on which types were best up to and including which construction paper colors were ok (most were too bitter due to the dyes, which was annoying as you'd think colored paper would taste fruity and delicious). But the ultimate forbidden fruit was eating book paper. You can tell which books were my favorites at my paper-eating age because they have little nibbles out of the corners. It was such a weird addiction/compulsion.
posted by potrzebie at 8:54 AM on February 22 [8 favorites]


Place slice of bologna and gob of grape jelly between two pieces of white bread. Squeeze bread until there are no air pockets.
posted by BWA at 9:01 AM on February 22


Good for you. Fuck ants.

Fants.
posted by traveler_ at 9:18 AM on February 22 [2 favorites]


I've heard that ants are particularly delicious because they carry the element of terroir, that is to say that ants from a specific region would taste very much like the region they came from. Like fine wine or olives. That being said I have eaten some ants and thought that they pretty much taste like lemons. I guess I need to eat ants everywhere I go to discover if this is true...
posted by Dillionaire at 9:20 AM on February 22 [3 favorites]


Crunchy peanut butter, Velveeta and raisin sandwiches.

Crunchy taco shells with American cheese slices.

Buttered saltines.

And pennies. So many licked pennies.
posted by scrump at 9:35 AM on February 22 [3 favorites]


In elementary school, my daily (REQUESTED!) lunch was mayonnaise and Oscar Mayer bologna on Wonder Bread. The thought of this now makes me gag.

I was also the only kid in my elementary school who voluntarily ate: liver, pickled tomatoes, pickled herring.

Tablespoons full of horseradish (red or white) at Passover.

Bananas dipped in chocolate butter.

Grapefruit, peeled and segmented like oranges.

According to almost everyone here, now that I live on the Wrong Coast, I am terribly odd for loving malt vinegar on French fries.
posted by hanov3r at 9:46 AM on February 22 [3 favorites]


My brother and I made soup from cold mashed potatoes, with ketchup, mustard, and, oxford commas, no, mayonnaise. We took special pleasure in the ritual of stirring using a made up language while at work. My mom went to work when I was in third grade, so I spontaneously took to making desserts out of joy of cooking with stuff we had around, so like, a two layer iced chocolate cake set up on the checkerboard, covered with foil. It was a huge cake. I once made prune whip (insert choking laughter here, because what sociopath would invent that and put it in a recipe book for an innocent child to find) and I served the whip, chilled in my parents wine glasses. That was about the end of the desserts as it turned out to be a torture of manners.
posted by Oyéah at 10:10 AM on February 22 [3 favorites]


Chicken bouillon by the cube. I stopped doing this once I discovered Marmite.
posted by yeahlikethat at 10:39 AM on February 22 [4 favorites]


I used to eat so much sugar that, after being caught by Mum who had previously weighed the sugar bowl, I secretly bought a bag of sugar. I'd weigh the bowl, ate all the sugar I wanted (= roughly half the height of a Weetabix) then put in just enough sugar so the bowl weighed a bit less. Explains a lot about me and my diet to this day.

 Did you get a lot of stomachaches as a child?

Oh my, the time I chugged about 250 g of Tate & Lyle before bed … my guts were writhing. Horrible thick ropey snake-like spasms, complete with night sweats. All throughout, my gran's voice intoning her usual warning about sugar: “You'll get worms!”. Never again, until the next time.

  those disposable serving-size cups of shelf-stable aseptic coffee creamer, I would drink all of them straight from the cups.

Pro-tip, from a friend's kid: those hollow flattened stir-straws make the best stab-and-suck tools. Kid was like a lacto-mosquito and could drain a dozen creamer pots in as many seconds. I may have, y'know, joined in, slightly. Until I got one that was sour and acck bleaah no.

Also a big shout out to Team Squished White Bread Puck. You are my people more than you may ever know.
posted by scruss at 10:47 AM on February 22 [4 favorites]


I don't know what's wrong with you people, I have eaten many ants and they all tasted awful
posted by prize bull octorok at 10:47 AM on February 22 [3 favorites]


I liked to fix myself a bowl of unsweetened whipped cream with a ridiculous amount of nutmeg and/or cinnamon sprinkled on top, or a bowl of plain yogurt with broken open pills of acidophilus or other probiotic powder scattered on top of it. This is a texture I still WEIRDLY like, like a soft cream covered in a dry, unsweetened powder.
posted by euphoria066 at 10:55 AM on February 22 [2 favorites]


In descending order of resemblance to actual food:

- coffee beans
- unpopped popcorn kernels (the ones left at the bottom when you make popcorn)
- ants
- paper

I remember I particularly enjoyed that blue/grey lined writing paper from school, and the tangy flavor of crepe paper - must have been the fire retardants.
posted by atoxyl at 11:00 AM on February 22 [7 favorites]


OH OH OH ALSO as a very very very small child (until about the age of 3), i used to eat the coffee grounds out of the bottom of mom's coffee cup.
posted by hanov3r at 11:02 AM on February 22 [2 favorites]


Snacked on bouillon cubes and unsweetened chocolate from the pantry.
posted by showbiz_liz at 11:08 AM on February 22 [3 favorites]


Kool Aid + sugar in a plastic baggie, as a snack on the bus. We'd all have vividly red or blue tongues and fingers.

FYI, this was basically the commercial snack food Lik-M-Aid.

I think the "cheetos toasted in butter" thing must have been a recipe from somewhere, because we ate those, too, but I associate them with "deliberately making a snack" rather than "scavenging weird stuff together."
posted by praemunire at 11:22 AM on February 22 [3 favorites]


Peanut butter and lettuce sandwiches. Sounds like an odd combo, but together they are more than the sum of their parts. My regular babysitter used to make them for me but one time we had a different sitter and she refused because she thought I was playing a joke on her. Also eating pizza upside-down.
posted by ultraviolet catastrophe at 11:26 AM on February 22 [1 favorite]


I have eaten many ants and they all tasted awful

See, dear tauroid, the secret is to drown them in honey first.

Paper, check. Grass and clover, check. Add wild scallions, though.

Hot dogs with peanut butter! Ambrosia!
posted by mwhybark at 11:28 AM on February 22 [4 favorites]


What is up with kids and eating weird salty things anyway? A lot of the examples here and in the twitter thread are very salt focused. Like, I get the sugar and fat, those are just tasty and satisfying, and as kids, we have far less compunction about just acquiring fat and sugar in whatever form we can. But are kids craving salt for a particular reason?
posted by yasaman at 11:42 AM on February 22 [3 favorites]


I used to eat rock salt from the big bag in my uncle's shed.

Sorrel, clover, the chives behind my neighbor's house ("onion grass").

Mayonnaise (Miracle Whip) sandwiches, with a thick enough layer to replace any other sandwich fillings there may have been.
posted by mefireader at 12:01 PM on February 22 [4 favorites]


Growing up outside Billings, Montana my neighbor told me that some little white flower petals were edible. I don’t think we ate them often, maybe only a handful of times. They were sweet and fresh like honey on a cucumber. I have no idea if they were truly “edible” but I also didn’t get sick. So I still have no idea if it was a weird kid rumor or if she just ate a flower and found out it was sweet.
posted by Crystalinne at 12:02 PM on February 22 [2 favorites]


I would take a big bite of ice cream and hold it in my mouth until and melted, and then spit it back into the bowl. Then I would stir it all up till it became a soft-serve consistency and then eat it again. I don't know why the adult in my life let me do that, it was weird.
posted by Syllables at 12:10 PM on February 22 [2 favorites]


Also, if you carefully pull up a tall stem of grass so that it sort of slides out of its sheath instead of just breaking off, the yellow-white bit down at the bottom there is surprisingly tender and delicious.


Ah! This reminds me, as a kid I often used to pick honeysuckle flowers (not cape honeysuckle, but the regular kind with the pale yellow flowers). At the base of each flower is a little green “nib” that closes off the base of the petal trumpet. (Agh, botanical vernacular, halp!)

If you used your fingernails and pinched just above the green nib carefully, you could cut through the petal but not through the pistil inside. Then, pulling on the green nib, you could extract the pistil still attached.

As the tip of the pistil slid out of the narrow end of the trumpet, it would extract a teensy droplet of honeysuckle nectar! Delicious!
posted by darkstar at 12:21 PM on February 22 [14 favorites]


Sour cream and onion potato chips with cream cheese squeezed on (from the packets we got on the lunch line at school).

Potato chips and ketchup.

Shredded coconut in a bowl, mixed with Hershey's syrup.

Ketchup on scrambled eggs (I still do this).

Chili sandwiches: two slices of bread with a slice of American cheese and cold leftover chili.

Two slices of American cheese with a piece of bologna in between. No bread.

Pickled herring on Triscuits.

"Hors d'ouevres" of Vienna sausages and sweet pickles, sliced and served "fancy" on toothpicks.
posted by cooker girl at 12:21 PM on February 22 [4 favorites]


A pack of Carnation instant breakfast with just enough milk to make it into a thick slurry. It was like eating frosting.
posted by ElleElle at 12:33 PM on February 22 [2 favorites]


Little black ants just taste like formic acid, which is sorta citrus-y.

By Choice I Ate: Pine grubs (taste like resin); macaroni with ketchup; raw lemons with salt.

I ate a lot of other weird things by someone else's choice, but that's not really the topic at hand.
posted by aspersioncast at 1:06 PM on February 22 [2 favorites]


told me that some little white flower petals were edible

Ah, you reminded me of rosehips... Mmmm... And then, out walking and hiking - many types of wild berries... (mmm, northern red currant...)
posted by jkaczor at 1:25 PM on February 22


Cool Whip, frozen. (Chewy! ) Butter. Spoonfuls of sugar.

My husband briefly started a trend in his elementary school by stuffing his pockets full of raw wheat and chewing it like tobacco.
posted by RedEmma at 1:36 PM on February 22 [1 favorite]


Dry ramen with the powder sprinkled on top for high school lunch.
posted by pickinganameismuchharderthanihadanticipated at 1:40 PM on February 22 [6 favorites]


I've sucked on road salt. I'm pretty sure that it was just salt. Didn't kill me, anyway.
posted by Halloween Jack at 1:46 PM on February 22 [1 favorite]


I used to mix lemon juice into sugar until it formed a paste, then eat it. I’d forgotten all about that.

I also really liked raw ground beef (even though I knew I shouldn’t eat it), and would sneak bits while helping make meatloaf or hamburgers. Never got food poisoning or tapeworms, luckily. I recently got to eat steak tartare from a known-safe source — still delicious.

Unlike most of y’all, I hated salt as a kid. Anything really salty tasted like a mouthful of ocean water to me — ugh, spit it out. I used to scrape the salt off my pretzels before eating them, leaving little salt piles on the table.
posted by snowmentality at 1:54 PM on February 22


Oh wow, I'd forgotten about the paper. I used to punch little semicircles out of the pages of my books with my fingernails and then eat them. What is it with kids eating paper?
posted by HypotheticalWoman at 3:24 PM on February 22 [1 favorite]


Well, grownups tell you not to, so…
posted by Anticipation Of A New Lover's Arrival, The at 4:44 PM on February 22 [1 favorite]


Am I the only person who's going to admit to snacking on dog food as a kid? Dry kibble only. Not the wet stuff, that would be gross.

Not dog food, exactly, but I used to love to suck on the soup bones for days after we'd fish them out of the stew. Chasing the taste of marrow in them, I think. I still recall the horrified look on a teacher's face when I pulled one out of my bag during a snack time one day....
posted by TwoStride at 7:19 PM on February 22 [4 favorites]


Oh, I think I mentioned this in another weird food thread. This is something that was given to us rather than something we got ourselves, but we'd sometimes have a snack of white bread with butter or margarine sprinkled with white sugar.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 8:55 PM on February 22 [1 favorite]


Cream of mushroom right out of the can! Also paper, chalk and occasionally spoonfuls of flour. The paper was boredom, the chalk and flour were definitely a texture thing, something about powdery chalky things was my jam, but I didn't have a sweet tooth.
posted by larthegreat at 8:58 PM on February 22 [1 favorite]


Honestly, my mother was such a talented, creative cook that it was really hard to imagine not being satisfied with what was put in front of us. We did have some prepared foods and store bought snacks, but I mean like for Crippin's sake she made homemade saltine crackers. She'd sprinkle Parmesan cheese in our Thermos of Spaghetti-O's.

We could only have TV dinners, on TV tray tables, in front of the TV, as a treat when Dad was working the four to midnight shift 'cause he hated them.

We'd have mixed nuts in the shell at Grandma's house, but half the time you'd get the empty shells Uncle Skip glued back together and put back in the bowl.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 9:20 PM on February 22 [3 favorites]


I used to get a slice of bologna or cheddar cheese and suck it hard to extract all the salt from it I could. I would then chew and swallow the rest. When I got to high school I used to get those big pretzel sticks and suck all the salt off of them. Afterward I would sometimes eat the remainder of the saltless stick, sometimes throw it away. I would do that until my tongue and lips were swollen from the salt.

I still eat spoonfuls of powdered parmesan cheese from the can (sooo salty and savory) and have been known to sprinkle malt vinegar straight into my mouth. There's a brand of salt and vinegar chips that are so strong they make my eyes water and I can't get enough of them. I really, really love my salty, acidic foods.
posted by triggerfinger at 9:29 PM on February 22 [2 favorites]


My biggest comfort food is scrambled eggs with ketchup and toast with strawberry jam. You put the eggs on the toast like an open faced sandwich. I can, of course, never eat this in front of other people.
posted by Weeping_angel at 1:11 AM on February 23 [2 favorites]


Wait, are these supposed to be things I don’t eat any more?

In that case, braunschweiger and miracle whip sandwiches on white bread. I see the braunschweiger at the deli and sometimes think about buying some, but I’m afraid it’ll be gross and my childhood memory will be tainted.
posted by Weeping_angel at 1:34 AM on February 23 [3 favorites]


My brother and I would midnight-raid the fridge taking forks and fishing all the bleu cheese chunks from the jarred salad dressing. Come dinner time, when our mom would put the jar on the table, invariably she or our dad would make a comment about how Marie’s salad dressing company was going to shit, putting no bleu cheese in their dressings, as we sat innocent faced as can be. Sorry Marie’s!
posted by Jazz Hands at 6:34 AM on February 23 [9 favorites]


Ah, yes, my brother and I would sample wild strawberries in the yard, flowers, onion grass, and wild blackberries, raspberries, and mulberries. It's a good thing my dad taught us to fear poke berries (we still used them as ink). But then Mom served poke salad and I thought she was trying to kill us.
posted by Miss Cellania at 9:34 AM on February 23 [6 favorites]


Am I the only person who's going to admit to snacking on dog food as a kid?
Add me to the dry dog food list. And the dry cat food list. And the chicken food list. And the horse and goat food list. But, as far as I can recall, I always thought of it as cosplay rather than food qua food. (Not that I knew the word "cosplay" at the time. Much less "qua").
posted by eotvos at 3:04 PM on February 23 [5 favorites]


Dry ramen with the powder sprinkled on top for high school lunch.

You know we're a demographic? Mamee Monster Noodle Snacks from Malaysia are a thing. They're surprisingly widely available.

Or, y'know, you could just gnaw on the regular ones.
posted by scruss at 5:48 AM on February 24 [3 favorites]


Monster noodle snacks were a school canteen staple of my childhood. 50c AUD rings a bell. Dry ramen is not at all an unusual snack here to my mind.
posted by AnhydrousLove at 6:12 AM on February 24 [1 favorite]


Bowl of Country Time Lemonade powder. Bowl of ice cubes. Dip ice cube in powder, lick off, repeat. Chomp ice cube when too small to grip.
posted by rachaelfaith at 23:31 on February 21

This sounds DELICIOUS.

I have a serious sweet tooth. As a child, once I understood that frosting was basically a mix of fat and sugar, I replicated it by stirring butter and granulated sugar together as a secret snack. Never let your children do this.
posted by grandiloquiet at 23:33 on February 21

On preview, yeah I did the butter and sugar as frosting thing too. It's how I first started learning how to bake cookies and stuff. I think I saw a chocolate chip cookie recipe on a bag of baking chips that I was eating like candy and realized that creaming butter and sugar together was part of the way to making cookies and I only needed a few more ingredients.
posted by loquacious at 23:48 on February 21

I did this too, but I came to it from realizing tbat I didn’t need to finish making the cookie dough before it was delicious. I was probably 8.

My grandma used to call me rabbit because I'd eat canned corn straight out of the can, mixed vegetables straight out of the can
posted by yasaman at 23:53 on February 21

Me, but with spinach. Canned, literally straight out of the can with a fork. Later I also added cans of diced tomatoes to my rotation, though I usually added salt/garlic powder/herbs to the can.

Ramen noodle flavor packets, straight.
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 10:58 on February 22

So my family ate ramen weirdly. You’d microwave the noodles in a bowl of water, then drain them, then sprinkle the flavor packet on top. I realized at one point that the noodles were also delicious with spices from the spice cabinet on them. And if I did that, I could hide with my book later and dip my finger in the packet as if it were Fun Dip. My mouth is actually watering right now.

honeysuckle nectar! Delicious!
posted by darkstar at 15:21 on February 22

Oh, come on, this isn’t weird, right? This is just correct, akin to eating berries off a bush, right?

I was a super weird eater as a kid. At one point I decided that if KoolAid was just basically sugar water, then I could just skip the packet and mix up my own sugar water any time I wanted some. Which was pretty much every day after school for about a year. My mom had a container of malted milk powder that I used to sneak spoonfuls of to eat dry. I also used to have oranges as a snack while reading, but I’d segment them, then rip each segment open with my teeth and eat the little tiny nubs individually.

But salt was my real vice. I definitely remember sucking on rock salt. I’d dunk pretzels in water and drink the resulting water. I got in trouble once for taking packets of soy sauce from the condiment jar at my mom’s work and just drinking them. I liked sunflower seeds, but hated the mess of spitting out the shells, so sometimes I’d suck on them until the shell lost all flavor, bite them open, and then chew and swallow the whole shell and seed together. But grossest of all, when we would make microwave popcorn I would open up the empty bag afterwards and scrape off and eat all the “butter” that was still stuck to the bag.
posted by Night_owl at 6:50 AM on February 24 [3 favorites]


Salt in my orange juice, salt on my apples.
posted by virago at 9:37 AM on February 24 [1 favorite]


Wow, this thread has been reminding me of all kinds of things I haven't thought about in years. Add spoonfulls of Cremora brand dry coffee creamer straight from the jar to my list. Just shovel it in until your mouth is basically filled with plaster, then chew it for minutes. (That's up there with Coolaid powder on the list of things that don't sound at all appealing now.)

Also, those instant-soups that came in little flat plastic and foil packets that were meant to be mixed with hot water in a coffee cup, except eaten dry. When I was around 8-10, My mom had a shit job, but it was at a fancy place that had a well stocked free-snacks kitchen. When she had to work saturdays, she'd bring me, and I'd lay on the carpet in a conference room reading books and eating an absurd number of powdered soup packets straight from the foil pouch.

I'm glad to see dry ramen is so common. Discovering that we both had nostalgia for doing so was among the first positive interactions with my college roommate during our first week together. But, I've never actually talked about it with anybody else before. I'm going to have to try some Monster Noodle snacks.
posted by eotvos at 1:38 PM on February 24 [2 favorites]


For about half of my 3rd year, I only ate foods I perceived as yellow: scrambled eggs, bananas, Mac and cheese, butter sandwiches on bread with crusts cut off, Chex cereal, French fries, Kraft slices (I know, I know, not really a food), lemonade, corn, sugar cookies, etc. Thinking back, I have no idea how I started on that. I also don’t know how I stayed alive, or why I was indulged for so long.

One day, though, at my grandma’s house, I wasn’t going to be allowed any of her delicious sugar or peanut butter cookies unless I ate some of each dish she’d made for dinner, which was succotash, buttermilk biscuits, green beans, mashed potatoes with gravy, and meatloaf. I ate a few bites of each, grumbling the entire time. It was enough to break it up. The next day for breakfast, I ate a scrambled egg, a piece of toast with butter—and a slice of bacon! It was back to normal from there.

Still not too keen on succotash, though, to be honest.
posted by droplet at 2:11 PM on February 24 [3 favorites]


Tonic water.

Peanut butter and bacon sandwiches.

Pizza rolls with a chocolate chip melted on top of each one.

A piece of a brownie, rolled between my hands until it was a shiny, dense ball.
posted by beandip at 6:49 PM on February 25 [1 favorite]


I wish I had caught this thread sooner. I have so many of these...
  • Microwave "pizzas" made of Wonder bread, Heinz ketchup and Kraft Parmesan from the green can, microwaved on high until it was crusty
  • Many regular foods severely overcooked in the microwave: hotdogs until burnt, frozen burritos, TV dinners
  • Wonder bread, crust removed, smushed into a 3-D triangle shape
  • Shredded cheese, sprinkled on aluminum foil and burned under the broiler
  • Stouffer's French bread pizza cooked until the edges were nicely browned. I'd eat the cheese off first, strip out the spongy, sauce-soaked bread, then fold the chewy crust over on itself multiple times and eat it last
  • Dog food and Beg'n Strips -- dog treats that looked like fake bacon
  • Frozen orange juice concentrate straight from the can with a spoon
I'm sure there are many others. These are just a few that I can name off the top of my head. Additionally, a friend and I used to play "chemistry kitchen" when my parents were away, mixing up random ingredients in the kitchen and baking them. My mom lost several pieces of good cookware this way.

Things I still do...
  • "Open faced" grilled cheese sandwiches, where I make only one side of a grilled cheese, then once it's all melty, flip it over and burn the cheese to a dark brown
  • Cut the edges off a cinnamon brown sugar Pop-Tart, surgically remove the unfrosted side, then fold the frosted side over onto itself so I have superfrosted Pop-Tart bite
posted by slogger at 12:29 PM on February 26 [3 favorites]


before I forget, mentioned these elsewhere but they belong here too:
  • a little bit of pepper on raspberries is amazeballs. It's a totally different flavour.
  • You won't believe me, but sugar cookies and sweet BBQ sauce is heavenly.
posted by scruss at 2:38 PM on February 26 [1 favorite]


Superfrosted Pop-Tart Bite is the name of my Welsh tribute band.
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 7:20 PM on February 26 [1 favorite]


chewing on dry alka-seltzer tablets

There was a brief challenge craze around 1983 to see if you could swallow one. My gag reaction cut in early, but I don't honestly think it's possible.
posted by scruss at 2:17 PM on March 2 [1 favorite]


I used to sneak the occasional bouillon cube from the pantry and lick it for awhile. I guess I wasn't getting enough salt?
posted by technodelic at 8:28 PM on March 4 [2 favorites]


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