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Nov 13, 2008 03:27 PM

Most Underrated Foods

I have been on a pink grapefruit kick recently and realized I didn't eat much of it before because I associated it with the elderly people at my local diner eating it with a spoon

But eating the supremes and squeezing all of that delicious juice is so delicious!

Is there a food you love that you think is underrated by others?

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  1. Grilled liver, collard greens, brussels sprouts, stinky tofu.....

    35 Replies
    1. re: dpan

      The OP said *under* rated. (Grimacing) These you mentioned, IMO, should never be mentioned in any sentence calling them "food."

      1. re: al b. darned

        You might want to take back your words when you realize you are including collards in the mix. I realize Southerners can't cook Collards worth the effort to forage them... but there are OUTSTANDING Ethiopian, Portugese & Mexican versions of Collards that frankly... I would take over Mashed Potatoes or a Choice Filet any day... and no I am not a vegetarian.

        1. re: Eat_Nopal

          My wife makes a great stir fry with chopped collard greens with garlic and fermented black beans.

          1. re: Eat_Nopal

            eat nopal, why you diss southerners' collards?

            1. re: Eat_Nopal

              Couldn't disagree with you more! I simply love southern collard greens!

              1. re: FoodChic

                I was harsh... but the way other cultures do Collards... you will feel the same way.

                1. re: Eat_Nopal

                  No they would just be happy to have found another way to enjoy their collards while still loving southern collards.

                  1. re: viperlush

                    I totally agree with viperlush. My first tastes of southern collards were not good--overly salty/sweet/bitter/tangy (a lot of people don't know how to cook it). When I finally had it prepared correctly it was an epiphany! Now I seek it out.

              2. re: Eat_Nopal

                Gasp! Southerners cannot cook them? Take that back!

              3. re: al b. darned

                I totally disagree with that. especially w/r/t brussels sprouts. I'm with you, dpan.

                1. re: tatamagouche

                  Thanks. The American aversion to brussels sprouts (and also to collard greens) is with the way it's traditionally prepared. Most people eat the kind that's been boiled forever and totally devoid of taste and texture. I love sprouts (and greens) that are stir fried in a hot wok or sauteed, and retains a firmness to the texture and more importantly the taste.

                  1. re: dpan

                    Roasted brussel sprouts is the way I go now. Can't eat them when they're like "regular cooked cabbage" - but roasted? I'm ALL over that.

                    1. re: LindaWhit

                      Even better when roasted with a LOAD of garlic and then drizzled with good balsamic right before serving. YUM!

                      1. re: pinkprimp

                        OMG, that sounds WONDERFUL. *runs to store to get her some sprouts*

                        1. re: pinkprimp

                          Toss them with a bit of pecorino romano after the garlic and balsamic, you will think you have died and gone to heaven!

                          1. re: pinkprimp

                            With enough garlic, almost anything tastes good. :-)

                          2. re: LindaWhit

                            totally agree. tender young farmer's market brussels sprouts roasted with a shallot butter sauce. delicious.

                          3. re: dpan

                            and I LOVE collards that are cooked for hours into a melting-soft dal.

                            1. re: dpan

                              BRAISED is the way to go with Brussel sprouts. Cut them in half, saute some pancetta or bacon pieces, brown the sprouts, add the stock and whatever -- toasted pine nuts, etc - cover and cook for maybe five to 10 minutes. Totally sweet and flavourful. No bitterness.

                              1. re: dpan

                                I think brussel sprouts are well-appreciated these days, seems like a lot of people make them more regularly now and there is huge passion for them, myself included - in the fall and winter, i eat them once a week

                                1. re: jpmcd

                                  I'm still waiting to pick my BS from the garden. A good frost makes them sweeter. They're waiting for Thanksgiving.

                                  1. re: Passadumkeg

                                    Although using that particular acronym sounds like something totally different... :)

                                    1. re: tatamagouche

                                      I think you missed the BS thread. What a divisive veggie.

                                      1. re: Passadumkeg

                                        Divisive indeed. Probably socialist. Bet they only eat them in blue states.

                                          1. re: Passadumkeg

                                            Heh. Yeah. Loving both, guess that makes us Chowhounds apolitical (or omnipolitical?).

                                            1. re: tatamagouche

                                              I don't think I've ever had okra properly prepared. I know it is loved (especially by the Texas fish out of waater, Scargod.) so next time I visit my daughter in Austin, gonna do a sampling. Okra tacos?

                                2. re: dpan

                                  >the way it's traditionally prepared. Most people eat the kind that's been boiled forever and totally devoid of taste and texture.

                                  but which is not devoid of smell, the stench of which you'll never remove from your abode!

                                  1. re: BeaN

                                    What is the way to avoid the smell? Evey time someone has offered them
                                    to my I declined.I can't even get past the odor in the environment.
                                    If proper cooking is the solution.Whats the answer to handling /size of and

                                      1. re: BeaN

                                        Smell? Stench? What are you talking about? Do you blacken yours?

                                        Common is to batter and fry them. I like to lightly steam smaller pods where they are still al dente. Then just butter over them. Sooo hard to find good okra in CT. It's either a conspiracy or CT produce people think you are not supposed to sell them until they start turning black....

                                        1. re: Scargod

                                          ? perhaps there is a chemical,enzyme or ? that not all people smell.My neighbor in Italy was devastated when I had the English Boxwoods removed.I could not stand the odor healthy box has.She could not smell them at all.I am not the only one with box and viburum issues,but do understand we are a minority.
                                          OKRA ? maybe specific odors ?to individuals

                                          1. re: lcool

                                            To me, the fragrance of boxwood is one of the loveliest on earth.

                                      2. re: dpan

                                        I used to tease my husband mercilessly about one of his favorite treats: a dozen Brussels sprouts, steamed and eaten naked (the sprouts, not the man). Yecch! THEN one day I tried them roasted with garlic. and oil..the next day we made a gratin...after that a stir-fry with sweet onions, red bell peppers, and mushrooms...even tried them pickled with lots of dill. I'M HOOKED!! Mmmm.

                                  2. re: dpan

                                    i totally agree, i have an absolute addction to stinky collard greens and brussel sprouts (most of my friends think i'm a bit odd actually because i love most vegetables like they do chocolate) i grew up on a farm and i have had a taste for them since i was little. my mum and dad are always saying even when i was a baby my favourite food was mushed greens! ;-)
                                    onto another underated food item, the skin on fish also fish heads they are delicious if you ever make fish stock with a whole fish (head innards and all) try a fish eye, they are fantastic! the white of the eyeball is especially good (and if you are game enough don't forget to suck the gritty head innards out either disgusting but rewarding!)

                                  3. Pea soup. I never hear anyone really talk about it and it is sooo good with bits of bacon, ham and caramelized onions.

                                    7 Replies
                                    1. re: jacquelines

                                      2nd this.
                                      Also, prunes! It's sad that everyone associates them with ... regularity. I think they are the tastiest of dried fruits.

                                      1. re: fbf242

                                        I always replace raisins in baking recipes with chopped prunes. They have a softer texture and richer flavor and everyone seems to enjoy the result, until you tell them!!

                                        1. re: fallingup

                                          fallingup, tell them you used "dried plums." then, they'll not fret. funny, isn't it? prunes have such a bad rap that even the *growers* wanted to call them something else!

                                      2. re: jacquelines

                                        mmmmm Anderson's pea soup.

                                        Santa Nella and Buellton California. Oh, and there's one down by San Diego (near Legoland) too.

                                        1. re: jacquelines

                                          The best part of T-day is pea soup made from turkey carcas. Can't wait.

                                          1. re: jacquelines

                                            Whenever I talk about it, most people shudder, but I love it, especially home made with, like you said, bacon, ham and onions. The thicker the better...

                                            When I serve it, I like to put a big, hard sourdough pretzel right on top. It adds a little extra flavor and tastes so good after it soaks up some of the soup.

                                            1. re: cuccubear

                                              I looooove pea soup. In the winter I have it about 4 times a week for lunch. When i'm feeling lazy I just eat the amy's organic pea soup..... so good!

                                          2. Heinz Ketchup. It's the only thing keeping me alive.

                                            4 Replies
                                            1. re: Kate is always hungry

                                              I find it highly overrated with people I know. They just like to slather it on everything to my disgust.

                                              1. re: AngelSanctuary

                                                AngelSanctuary, i'm with you. i'll never understand the appeal of drowning food in ketchup. my sister does that - of course it *must* be Heinz - and it makes me sick.

                                                two foods that are definitely under-appreciated/underrated - pumpkin and cranberries. people rarely bother to trot them out unless it's the holidays, and even then they're relegated to their tired, predictable roles as pie filling and turkey accompaniments.

                                                most underrated herb - thyme
                                                spice - cardamom

                                                1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                                  ghg, look at my recipe for southern sour cream pound cake -- i make a version with cardamom and chocolate.

                                                  1. re: alkapal

                                                    sounds divine. i know we've discussed our mutual appreciation of cardamom on prior's the "secret" ingredient in several of my recipes ;)

                                            2. Though not really a food, and based on the Ketchup reply....Gatorade - it saved my life a couple of times in the Peace Corps, yet so many people won't touch the stuff.

                                              3 Replies
                                              1. re: tracylee

                                                If it is cold, I like the original and orange flavors of Gatorade. If it gets warm, however...BLECH!!!

                                                1. re: al b. darned

                                                  When I turned 19, the first bottle of alcohol I bought was vodka, but I couldn't afford orange juice to go with it. I could afford orange Gatorade, though. So I bought that. Warm. It was.. hideous. Might be why I never was much of a drinker. ;)

                                                2. re: tracylee

                                                  I cant drink the bottled Gatorade because of their inclusion of HFCS, but I do love the version made from dry powder.

                                                  Have you tried Whole Paycheck's 365 Ketchup made without HFCS? It is about the same price as Heinz and the taste is far superior.

                                                  1. re: spellweaver16

                                                    Love cabbage, although I often have to restrain myself from my tendency to sautee and eat an entire head to prevent my GI tract from exploding with air, but it's so tasty, easy to prepare and versatile.