The Princess and the rice

When something’s on sale at the grocery store, it’s old. Expired. The opposite of fresh. That’s why it’s on sale. Check it out next time. Ribeye for 3.99 a pound? That’s last week’s ribeye. Look at it closely. A little grey, isn’t it? Best if sold by yesterday? Let me tell you, you gotta pay attention to this stuff.

Before Christmas break, Pulao and I bought some sale rice. The first time we had it, Pulao said it tasted bad. “It’s a little bitter,” she said. Ha! I scoffed. It tasted fine to me. We ate it again. “I don’t like this rice,” she said. The Princess and the pea, I thought. After the second time, Pulao bought some new rice, but I didn’t throw out the old. It’s fine!

Then we came back after ten days holiday vacation to find that our glass rice jar with the old rice, sealed tight, had six to seven buggy things in it. Kind of like little moths, or little cockroaches. Trapped in the jar, they seemed to be mostly dead. There was webby mossy stuff trailing from rice to bugs, and two bugs appeared to be joined at the butt. Went out with a bang, I guess. These bugs had time enough to be born, go through an awkward adolescence, hook up, and die – all while living inside our sale rice.

Pulao is classy, I’ve decided. With a true discerning taste. She is now also my official food taster, who I have asked to vet all my meals and drinks for twinges of buggy bitterness, so I will, in the future, not happily eat thousands and thousands of weevil larva.

7 Responses to The Princess and the rice

  1. karah says:

    So you’re making my sister-in-law eat bugs? Man, that’s low. I bet when she married you, she had no idea it would come to this.

  2. Pulao says:

    I really don’t want to discourage people from thinking of me as classy, but I don’t know that it requires a truly sophisticated tastebud to detect, you know, larvae in your rice.

    Is it bad that we went back to the store and got some other rice that was also on sale?

  3. Kris says:

    A tastebud more sophisticated than mine, I’m afraid to say.

    And this new rice on sale was COMPLETELY different. The sale rice that turned out to have bugs in it was like 50% off. This new rice was like 25% off. That’s half as many bugs . . .

  4. Aakaash says:

    I’m reminded of that risotto Stanley Tucci explains in “Big Night” – the shrimp has been grated into the rice. Maybe the classy taste ain’t classy enough to understand that this is exquisite risotto rice, with the meat already grated in. Sale Rice is Grate Rice, one could say. And the delicacy-stature of this rice is only reaffirmed by the aphrodisiacal (see grated larvae re-forming themselves to hook up) qualities.

    You don’t know what you are missing with just half the bugs now…

  5. Anirban says:

    Kris, you’re married to the expert. I’m beginning to see an eerie connection between the shutting down of ‘Meat & Cheese’ and Pulao turning vegetarian leaving only me to get rid of the inventory…

  6. dbay says:

    Super gross! This happened to me too, with dried soups. Opened them to find a giant mass of webby moss and bugs. I froze the balls of bugs planning to take them back to the store (wouldn’t that have been a fun customer service experience?). Then a foodie friend told me it’s really common in dried foods and especially dried soups. So, I don’t eat those anymore.

  7. Steven Koski says:

    Back in my day, we used to eat rice with bugs and be grateful for the extra protien.

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