Up A Tree. With A Sandwich. And No Hedgehog

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Getting rid of a food craving is a bit like when you have a song stuck in your head on continuous repeat*. Whether you get rid of it by succumbing, eating and listening, by standing your ground and waiting for it to pass or by desperately seeking some other distraction to make it go away is a vexed question.

Giving in to the craving can be a challenge as well, especially if it’s for something very specific. Or difficult to obtain. Or on the other side of the world. Or from somewhere that no longer exists. And if it’s all of the above, you’re going to have to keep on dreaming, or figure out a way to make your own...

Tomato soup and grilled cheese sandwich
Tomato soup and grilled cheese sandwich from Lindsay_NYC on Flickr

The vagaries of culinary psychology** unfortunately seem to have got wise to the relative ease of satisfying those pangs, so the feeling that you could really do with a bowl of steaming hot Heinz tomato soup (preferably accompanied with cheese on toast) tends not to be quite as strong as the hankering for a Pierre Herme salted caramel macaron, which in turn is a little less niggling than the desire for a pale yellow cupcake from the much-missed Boronia Bakery which was once in the Strand Arcade. The absolute quality of the food seems to be only part of the equation – otherwise that macaron would be trumping almost everything else on the list!

Tomato soup and grilled cheese sandwich
Tomato soup and grilled cheese sandwich from jwannie on Flickr

And the trickiest food cravings of all are the ones that relate to particular memories. Curling up on the couch under a throw rug with that tomato soup and cheese works pretty well (although not so much in summer). But the feeling of an early morning hot chocolate in Venice, or a luridly coloured ice cream remembered from childhood are much more elusive creatures.

The latest peculiar urge for odd food started last year with coming across this curiously titled book:

Up A Tree In The Park At Night With A Hedgehog
Up A Tree In The Park At Night With A Hedgehog, by P. Robert Smith

Plus, there was a bit of talking about trees by the trifle-eating cat’s parents, who have gone and got themselves rather a lot of extra ones.

Before I knew it, there was a distinct feeling that I ought to be up a tree, eating a bacon and egg toasted sandwich and reading a book. Preferably with a view of the ocean***. Which is a place I’ve not been for a very long time indeed. Knowing where to begin is tricky – do I start by finding a climbable tree? Or by finding a decent bacon and egg toasted sandwich? So far, there doesn’t seem to be a large supply of either. I’ve got about as much chance as I do of finding a hedgehog!

I’d love to hear what others do about their food cravings. And especially about any particularly obscure things that they’re for...

Raglan beach
Photo from philrickerby on Flickr - this is the sort of climate that lends itself to toasted bacon and egg sandwiches. Windswept begins to cover it. We're not in  California here, Toto...

* There really needs to be another name for those than an earworm. For the squeamish among us, it sounds most unpleasant. Not that it would make them less annoying.
** Or whatever it is that goes on in your head and makes you think about things to eat. Restless penguins, perhaps...
*** The usefulness of this, if you’re already distracted with both a sandwich and a book, is completely besides the point. It’s just how it is.

Penguins love comments - please share your thoughts...

  © Blogger template "Shush" by Ourblogtemplates.com 2009, changed to bits and pieces by the Sticky Penguin