When I was little, I was a curious child. I’ve definitely tasted my fair share of things that were either unsanitary, unhealthy, or toxic; playdough is salty, silly putty does not taste like the taffy it looks like, and scented markers don’t taste the way they smell. You can blame things like my stupidity, curiosity, or simply my lack of self control; if something seemed edible, or even resembled something edible, I would put it in my mouth to see if I could learn from the experience and use it in some dish in the future. Or, at least, I would try to remember what it was so I could get my mom to cook it again.
I remember a distinct moment from my youth when I ran out of my room in a one piece footed pajamas after growing tired of my Teddy Ruxpin toy. I had gone out to see what the rest of the world was up to (more so how I can get my brother in trouble from my antics) and high above my head on the bar countertop was a beautiful sight. A sight so beautiful I forgot about all the things I was going to do to my brother. A light was beaming down with glitter over a clear parfait glass, through it the beautiful colors mirroring only a world that could be imagined by a child filled with neon trees, crystal waters, and sparkle covered animals. A mountain on top of the glass was in perfect spiral as it fluffed up to the ceiling of our living room, topped with a perfect ruby orb of a cherry, and pierced with a bright purple straw. I rubbed my eyes in disbelief and quickly grabbed it.
“I must have this beautiful thing to myself and no one must know it exists.” I looked around and noticed that my parents were in the backyard entertaining the guests, who I could only imagine were the messengers of such a great gift. I turned my gaze back to the sundae.
“Quickly! You must take a sip. Once you put your mouth on the straw, coodie law dictates all. And in that law if you touch it with your germs, then you get to claim ownership.” I grabbed the glass and to my surprise, it wasn’t cold to the touch. It turns out that it was not ice cream. However, because of the bright colors and the easy access to it (come to think of it, I had to grab my step stool to get to it), I thought it must be some sort of amazing Asian candy. My mom would always come back from trips with candy in the shape of other treats. This was just an elaborate one. As I pursed my lips towards the straw, I began to fantasize the sugary sweetness that was about to cover my taste buds.
I finally leaned in to take my first sip of what I imagined was going to be strawberry flavored because of the aroma. With my first sip, an immediate sharpness hit my tongue and I run to the sink to spit everything out. A deep red waxy liquid mixed with my saliva is sprayed all over the white porcelain as I try to get rid of whatever evil has taken over my mouth. It had the taste of camphor, lightly braised in dish soap, with some strawberry scented markers, and a pinch of eraser shavings.
“What is this mad trick that these adults are trying to play on me?!” I inspected this malicious and foul item in my hand and realized that what I thought was the stem of the cherry was in fact a wick; I had just tasted a strawberry scented candle. I returned the candle to the bar top as quickly as I could – I wanted to avoid any concerns that my parents would have when they realized I had eaten chemicals and I also was afraid of being humiliated if my brother saw what I had done. I then ran back to my Teddy Ruxpin and began a therapy session with him, confessing to him my new found fear of candles, strawberry scented things, and sundaes.
16 oz pomegranate juice
1 tsp fresh ginger, grated
1/2 c orange juice,
2 tbs honey
1/2 tsp dried thyme
2 c blueberry, fresh or frozen
2 tsp butter, optional
vanilla ice cream
toasted nuts (I like almonds and walnuts)
Simmer all ingredients except for butter in saucepan on medium to high heat
Reduce sauce until half, about 40 minutes and turn off heat
Mix butter in if you want a creamier and shinier sauce
Serve over ice cream with a sprinkle of nuts.
-serves about 4-