Tinned green beans. I say tinned rather than canned because that is how my mother and grandmother (of Welsh decent) referred to them; always with a whiff is disgust. It is tinned green beans that I have loyally claimed as my closet food craving since high school.
Dumped from the can onto a microwave safe plate, I zap them for exactly 2 minutes then, shower them with heaps of Zataran’s Creole seasoning and lashings of Tabasco sauce. Yes, the sodium is astronomical and the dish benefits from no nutritional value, but it satiates a hankering that I get every couple of weeks like no other food.
I only eat them when I am alone, in the quiet of my kitchen, often standing over the sink. The spice and heat burn my tongue and lips—that’s part of the deal. Sometimes, they are so hot, rather than wait for them to cool down, I crudely slurp the flaccid beans into my mouth, then curse myself for doing so. Such is the way that secrets go.
My children, on an occasion of searching through the pantry have asked, “Momma, why do we have cans of green beans? We never eat them.” I tell them that I buy them when they are on sale, to keep for a food emergency. I have never expanded on what qualifies as a culinary emergency, and they’ve never asked. My secret has remained safe, even from my husband of nearly twenty years.
The spicy, microwaved, tinned green beans are just for me.
What food do you secretly love?