I have a miracle to report. Brace yourselves…this is big stuff. Ready?
I ate cilantro. And I didn’t die from it, and if I ever have opportunity to again eat the dish that contained it, I’d do so in a heartbeat.
My first bite inspired an “ennnhhh…cilantro!” There is no disguising that stuff. The menu did not warn me this dish was going to contain Irish Spring plant and that it wasn’t pick out-able. But I liked all the non-cilantro ingredients so much I decided to press through. After a couple of bites the soapy flavor melded with the other flavors and I could stand it. Wanna hear what I ate?
Boy, you really need a life. But so do I, so I’ll tell you.
It was an appetizer, a part of the meal we rarely order. Grouper Ceviche. Ceviche, in case you’re not familiar, is fish that has been marinated in a high-acid liquid like lemon or lime juice. The acid cooks the fish so the fish doesn’t need to be heated. It remains tender and fresh in flavor and texture, and yet it’s definitely cooked. The menu listed it like this: Grouper Ceviche. Trinity chips: yucca, plantain, taro. We thought, ok, well, it would be something different to try. But notice it does not carry a warning label about the cilantro. Tricksy, those folks at Finz are.
So it arrived at our table. The grouper had been chopped into little bits and was in a dish that was very heavy on liquid. The liquid was mostly lime juice, but it wasn’t too tart to eat so I think it must have been cut with some sugar and probably some other secret miracle ingredients. The liquid was swimming with other chopped up delectables, like thinly sliced radish, avocado, thin ribbons of fresh coconut, paper thin slices of jalapeno, and, of course, the dreaded Soap Weed. The chips came in a tall paper cone, and they were lengthwise slices of the aforementioned trinity, either fried or baked until they were crispy enough to be called chips. You simply dunked them in, scooped up some yumminess, popped it in your mouth, and then made “What About Bob?” noises. Double dipping was no problem, partly because the two of us don’t mind each other’s germs, and mostly because there was too much acid in that dish for any microorganism to survive.
The whole meal was as much an experience as it was a meal. I could wax poetic about my entree, too, but there was nothing miraculous about it. It contained what it said it contained, and I knew I’d like it. The Grouper Ceviche, however, is the basis for a miracle. I’m pretty sure that means it can be nominated for sainthood. I know I’d vote for it.