22 Random Questions About Food

I’ve seen this fun food questionnaire pop up on a number of blogs lately.

As best I can tell Patience of Willow seems to be the original source, so thank you Willow for putting this list together. If you don’t mind I’m going to play along too:

1. Do you enjoy food from countries that are not your own?

Considering Canada is a country of immigrants, aside from boiled tree juice – aka Maple Syrup

Warm maple syrup taffy on snow

and Poutine – aka heart attack in a bowl

Poutine = fries with cheese curds and brown gravy. Common sense says it’s disgusting. Taste buds say “delicious”!

There’s not much we can  claim as ‘Canadian food’ – so yeah, I enjoy food from all over.

2. When you prepare salad for yourself, do you rip your greens (lettuce, spinach, etc…), or do you cut them?

Isn’t there some old rule that greens ‘bleed’, losing flavour and crispness if you cut them? I always tear.

3. There’s a saying that goes: “Life is short, eat dessert first.”  What do you think of that advice?

I don’t eat dessert that often to begin with but yes dessert can and should be eaten whenever you choose to.

4. Have you ever thrown spaghetti against the wall to test for doneness? — If it sticks, it’s done (so they say) — What other such kitchen habits might you have?

I have never thrown spaghetti anywhere nor at anyone or anything. Didn’t mom tell us NOT to throw food? 😉

5. How often do you eat fish?

Not often enough but we try to at least once or twice a week.

6. When purchasing food for yourself, do you check the nutritional label? If so, what are you checking for?

As a heart failure patient checking labels is critical. Salt/sodium is my enemy because it causes the body to retain fluids, which increases blood volume, which makes the heart work harder…and if it can’t keep up, then the body retains even more fluids. There’s a fine balance that if not maintained can start an ugly downward spiral that leads to days of inactivity and diuretics until things get back to normal.

One of the meds I take also causes an increase in potassium levels, so I have to keep an eye on that as well.

7. How often do you eat salad as a meal?

In the summer at least three to four times a week.

Our garden made this salad 😀

8. Do you have any food quirks? For example: do you arrange a particular food in a certain way before eating? Or eat certain foods in a particular way every time? (i.e.: bite the heads off of gummy bears)

Aside from always taking salad dressing on the side when I eat out, I don’t have any rituals or routines when it comes to meals.

Oh wait, here’s one: I prefer to taste my meal before seasoning. Seriously, how could you possibly know if something on your plate needs more salt or pepper until you actually taste it?

9. When boiling water for pasta or whatnot, what are your “tricks” for keeping the water from boiling over?

I’ve never tried the wooden spoon trick. I do put a bit of salt but mostly I try to not overfill the pot. No more than half full seems to be the sweet spot. If you need more water then use a bigger pot.

10. Are there any recipes that have been passed down through the generations in your family? Have you passed them to anyone outside of your family? or are they a closely guarded secret?

I come from a family of subsistence eaters not culinary aficionados 😀

There were no traditional family recipes passed down to me. I have developed a few of my own that I consider my specialties. My double chocolate chip cookies is one.

My spinach lasagna would be another.

Most of what I learned came from making my own mistakes, doing research, asking questions of those with more experience, and consulting one of the most practical gifts I was ever given many years ago when I was a young bachelor:

This is my second copy. The original was so tattered, torn, and stained I just had to replace it.

Today with the internet it’s even easier. Frankly in 2018 anyone who can’t cook at least a few decent meals is just not trying or simply has no interest in cooking.

11. In general, how do you feel about “diet” foods? Meaning: foods with artificial sweeteners or alternative fats in them. For example: Diet soda or low fat muffins.

I’m always a bit skeptical of labeling that draws in consumers by calling attention to one specific “virtue” of a product.

“Green” this, “Organic” that, “Diet” whatever. The first question I always ask is, Okay so what is it about this product that you don’t want me to notice?

Bottom line: read labels and ask questions. If you’re not happy with the answers don’t be afraid to put it back on the shelf. Especially when it comes to processed and packaged products, or what I call “edible food-like substances.”

12. Have you purchased food online? What do you think about that idea?

I have never bought food online. I have no objections to the idea it’s just that I prefer to see, touch, and smell things for myself before I put them in my mouth.

Yes, I know that sounded naughty. Yes, it was deliberate 😉

13. When cooking for you and yours, what kinds of experiments have you tried?

Nothing specific comes to mind. We love to try new and different things. It seems to go in phases though, using certain ingredients based on what’s in season or readily available.

14. Do you now, or have you ever, grown or raised any of the food you eat?

Yes. In fact this is one of the greatest pleasures in my life and I feel so fortunate to be able to do this.

15. Are you a vegetarian? If not, has the idea of becoming one ever crossed your mind?

I like to joke that I could never be a vegetarian because…Bacon!

Having said that, we’re not huge carnivores either. We eat pork and beef in moderation, with a good mix of protein from other sources plus lots and lots of fresh veggies.

16. When arranging the food on your plate, does everything have to be separated, or is it okay for your food to touch?

I have no geographic rules for the food on my plate.

17. When eating out, what foods on the menu might push you out of your comfort zone? (for example: pineapple on pizza makes some people twitch)

I’m old enough to have tried most things once so there’s nothing I consider outside my comfort zone.

I’m not a picky eater but there are some foods I just don’t enjoy and simply won’t eat, especially in a restaurant where I’m paying a premium.

Organs such as liver, kidney, heart… uh uh – no thanks.

Olives and anchovies – can’t stand the texture.

Brussel sprouts and cauliflower – I don’t like the taste.

Other than that, I’m open.

18. Do you have a sweet tooth? If so, what kinds of foods generally satisfy the craving?

Not so much but I do have a soft spot for both ice-cream and chocolate.

19. What foods (if any) do you like to mix that other people might find strange?

I can’t think of anything, but I also don’t pay much attention to what others think of what I put in my own mouth.

20. When eating out, at what kind of restaurant do you prefer to dine?

We like to try fine dining and new creative cuisine. I prefer saving my money by skipping the fast food and major chain restaurants in favor of going out less often, but to unique places where the whole meal becomes an experience.

21. In general, how do you feel about organic food?

I think the basic concept and ideals behind the organic food movement are wonderful. I also think that some of it is a bit misguided and some of the more passionate practitioners come across as self righteous ass-hats.

Look, it’s more expensive and most families simply can’t afford this.

At the same time, I do agree that we should all be more conscious of what goes into our bodies and the potential long-term effects some of it may have on us.

For example, chemical fertilizers don’t scare me. Essentially we’re talking about the same elements found in compost and natural fertilizers, just produced on a much larger scale.

However, chemical pesticides, growth hormones and antibiotics in livestock, and genetically modified crops? That stuff scares the living shit out of me.

22. What foods (if any) do you eat when you are happy or unhappy?

I’m not sure if it’s a mood thing, a seasonal thing, or a combination of a few factors but when I’m feeling more upbeat I find I eat more fruits and vegetables, and when I’m feeling down or sluggish my body seems to crave more carbs.

If you found this list fun why not give it a try and share your food preferences with everyone too?

Thanks for reading 🙂



About Norm 3.0

World’s youngest grumpy old man & heart failure wonder boy. Interests: writing, woodworking, photography, travel, tennis, wine, and I know a bit about power tools.
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53 Responses to 22 Random Questions About Food

  1. “The first question I always ask is, Okay so what is it about this product that you don’t want me to notice?” Solid advice!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Ellen Hawley says:

    2. A fry cook I used to work with swore that if you used a knife on lettuce it would turn brown. I’ve never checked to see if she was right, but I expect she was and that that’s why we’re all supposed to tear the stuff.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I love food! One the main joys of life is eating haha 🙂 although the salad on its own I just can’t eat as a meal. On the side I love it but I’d get too hungry if I don’t combine with something else!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. You have an amazing garden…so we’ll maintained ❤️ garden-fresh veggies are the best..I bet ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Anna says:

    An excellent post, great coverage. I in particular agree with the #11, about being a bit skeptical by calling attention to one specific “virtue” of a product; I view this as nothing but a marketing tool. Such as Organic Dandelion Tea that I blogged about another day. This tea producer knows well how to use FDA loopholes and doesn’t even list ingredients or Nutrition Facts panel.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Thanks for sharing your responses Norm! I don’t have a sweet tooth, but I love dessert such as tiramisu cake, crème brûlée, cold tofu (with toppings).

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Considering the fact that we are going to spend more than three days together, this came just in time. Especially the info on olives, anchovies and not much salt. We are guilty of all of these (sometimes I get upset over too salty dishes myself) but it’s easy to work around. And great – I’ll eat all of your desserts then! Especially if we make you make your cookies! Mmmmm 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Ally Bean says:

    A question: what is the wooden spoon trick regarding the boiling of pasta?

    A personal tidbit: years ago I interviewed with Ethan Becker to work on Joy of Cooking. I didn’t get the job but I saw the test kitchens. Nice man.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Norm 2.0 says:

      Cool! That sounds like it could have been an interesting job.
      Wooden spoon: they say that laying a wooden spoon across the top of a boiling pot causes the foam to dissipate when it hits the spoon thereby preventing the whole mess from boiling over. Not sure if it’s true. I may have to try it out for myself but a number of people I’ve spoken to swear by this technique.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. ghostmmnc says:

    Bacon – yes! I noticed the radishes in your salad, too. I like them, but never remember to get any. We used to grow vegetables ourselves, but haven’t in a long time. Wonderful looking one you have there!
    I never had the Joy of Cooking book, but have the Betty Crocker one…and it’s old, ripped, and stained we’ve used it for so many years.
    It was fun reading your answers! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Jennie says:

    Nice, Norm!

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Sherry Felix says:

    We still use the old Joy pasted together. The new one changed too many of the recipes. The old one had how to cook bear.

    Liked by 2 people

  12. Margy says:

    Canadian foods – Nanaimo bars! the first printed recipe for Nanaimo bars appeared in the 1952 Women’s Auxiliary of the Nanaimo (BC) Hospital Cookbook. Though other places may have had similar recipes, this treat is firmly anchored in Canadian lore now!

    Liked by 3 people

  13. Corina says:

    I’ve never understood the obsession with bacon. I don’t really enjoy it so I rarely eat any, maybe one bite a year if my grandson insists.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Norm 2.0 says:

      Thanks Corina. I think bacon is one of those love it or hate it foods. I don’t think I know anyone who is undecided about bacon.


  14. joey says:

    Your garden looks fantastic! 😀 Your garden made a WONDERFUL looking salad! I have barely grown a thing this year. I have to build something to grow lettuce in. I have so many bunnies!
    You’re absolutely right about “edible food-like substances” — those are quite a bit of BEWARE for me.
    I very much appreciate your sensibilities about who cares what YOU eat. Although, I’m glad you did this post, because I like knowing what you like to eat 🙂
    Do you not care for cabbage or broccoli as well? They’re in the same group (cruciferous and bitter) and I’m curious. Cause I also see you’re eating radishes 😛 Yum!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Norm 2.0 says:

      Thanks Joey. No bunnies here. Our biggest problem at the beginning of the season is keeping the neighborhood cats from using the nice, loose, freshly turned soil as a litter box 😦
      Oddly enough cabbage doesn’t bother me, I don’t go out of my way to seek it out but it’s not on my “will not eat” list. And even weirder: broccoli is probably my all-time favorite veggie. I found the trick is to “peel” the tough outer skin off the stems with a paring knife and then, steamed or stir-fried, the entire thing, stems and florets is fricken delicious and not bitter at all.
      I’ve never had much success in growing it but I could eat it every single day.
      I’m not a huge radish fan but they add a nice kick to salads and they’re easy to grow.

      Liked by 1 person

      • joey says:

        Hah! Cats do like a good loose soil 😛
        I love all the cruciferous fellas, but that’s a great tip on the broccoli. I wonder if that might be just the trick for people who don’t eat the stems. Good to know.

        Liked by 1 person

  15. bikerchick57 says:

    Number 15. Yes. BACON.

    That is all…

    Liked by 2 people

  16. Colline says:

    How lucky you are to be able to have a lush vegetable garden. I am sure the food you harvest tastes delicious!

    Liked by 2 people

  17. Su Leslie says:

    Your garden looks great; home-grown food is one of life’s great little pleasures. I used to think that bacon was all that stood between me and vegetarianism, but I’ve discovered that it’s actually duck. Bacon here (unless it’s home-cured, and I do that only occasionally) isn’t really worth it. But a just-pink duck breast, with pomegranate dressing …. yum.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Norm 2.0 says:

      Thanks Su. I love duck but around here it’s not too common. I can see how it could keep someone from becoming vegetarian though because…mmmm good!


  18. eschudel says:


    Liked by 2 people

  19. A big YES to salad dressing on the side. Nothing worse than a big beautiful salad dripping in dressing… making it inedible. Nice list and beautiful garden, Norm!

    Liked by 2 people

  20. Tara says:

    “Our garden made this salad.” Awwwwwww. And tasting before seasoning is not a quirk, it’s just common sense, my friend. 🙂 Poutine looks absolutely disgusting. If you ever suggest that I try that, please disguise it in ice cream or blindfold me prior to me tasting it.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Norm 2.0 says:

      Thanks Tara. This pic was not the best-looking poutine. The gravy is supposed to be hot enough to melt the cheese and turn it all into one gooey delicious mess. It’s not a staple food in our home – I’ll indulge perhaps once or twice a year.

      Liked by 1 person

  21. Carrie Rubin says:

    “read labels and ask questions. If you’re not happy with the answers don’t be afraid to put it back on the shelf.”—Yes! I love that line.

    Liked by 1 person

  22. Ingrid says:

    Fun post and nice looking garden!

    Liked by 1 person

  23. Joanne Sisco says:

    I’m glad I had already eaten breakfast otherwise I’d be hungry after reading this post. What a fun list of questions 🙂

    As a Canadian I’m almost embarrassed to say I’ve never done the sugar shack maple-syrup-on-snow thing. I blame a childhood in the north where maple trees are rare as hen’s teeth.
    … and poutine. Who puts gravy on French fries?!! UGH. Mushy fries!!

    It appears that your garden is loving all this summer heat we’re having. I think we’re actually going to have tomatoes this year!! {so excited}

    Liked by 2 people

    • Norm 2.0 says:

      The garden is going bonkers this summer. The tomatoes in particular are producing like crazy. No ripe ones yet but probably in another 2 weeks.
      It’s ridiculous how excited I get and how much I enjoy this whole experience each summer 😀


  24. Dan Antion says:

    It’s hard to beat fresh veggies !

    Have a great weekend, Norm.

    Liked by 1 person

  25. Your garden looks fabulous, Norm, and I hope you enjoy fresh veggies all summer. One of the best parts of growing your own veggies is knowing that “stuff that scares the shit out of you” isn’t on them. 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

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