Claire Douglass regrets beginning a meal in Wisconsin with a ‘Seven Layer Salad’
Though I have gnawed on iguana in Panama, meat I dared not ask the origin of off street carts in various Asian countries, swampy ‘gator in the South of the United States, frogs, snails and offal of various kinds, I have only experienced culinary culture shock in one place: Wisconsin.
The first meal I managed not to eat was offered in that fair state; by “fair”, I mean they have lots of them. The first of several plates – I will continue onto the main and pudding in separate articles – was a ‘Seven Layer Salad’ brought to the table with a flourish usually reserved for a stuffed swan. Upon beholding said creation, I immediately feigned a dodgy stomach due to a sushi dinner the night before. Since no one at this table of eight had ever had sushi, plausibility was secure. Queen Victoria may have drunk finger water to appease a visiting African royal, but I am a commoner, and no such grace was forthcoming.
Imagine, if you will, this lovely concoction, in a “special” glass bowl so that the full glory of it may be appreciated, from the bottom layer up: iceberg lettuce from a bag; soggy tinned green beans; tinned corn; bacon “bits” and tinned black olives. Each of these layers were covered in ‘Miracle Whip’. The “miracle” is that a bottle has ever sold, the “whip” being what the inventor deserves. For the pièce de résistance it came with a mini dried onion ring topping.
Needless to say, the repast was one that made me long for finger water soup. How could I not have known that worse was yet to come?
Follow Claire Douglass on Twitter at @ClaireLaCubana.
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