Low calories sometimes means no taste

Published 9:43 pm Tuesday, June 9, 2009

There are very few times my husband actually asks me to write about something. In fact, his requests are usually not to be written about. The following is the exception, however. He asked – no, he strongly suggested – I recount the following. This one’s for you, Greg.

If you’re ever been on a diet, you know the idea of food takes on new mearning. In the case of the Gore household, our new diet wasn’t so much chosen by everyone (as in Greg) as it was instituted by the person who does the grocery shopping (me).

As such, I’m always in search of lower-calorie items and, since I love pasta, I was thrilled to discover a 20-calorie per- serving pasta substitute. I searched high and low and finally found it at a specialty grocery store. I wasn’t put off by the ingredients – yam flour and tofu – or the fact you can only purchase it floating in bags of water. It was pasta I could eat and not feel the calories piling up.

I bought two water-filled bags.

“We’re having fettucine alfredo for dinner,” I announced to Greg. 

He looked dubious. I beamed.

The first indication of trouble came when I opened the bag and caught whiff of a distinct odor. It was the combination of seaweed washed up on the shore and day-old meat.


Forging ahead, I followed the direction and dried the “noodles” and then popped them in the microwave to warm. I made the sauce and then combined all in a bowl.

I brought the bowl over to the table, hoping the creamy sauce covered up the beachy smell.

Greg fixed his plate and began to eat. I did the same.

I had just taken my first bite when I put my fork down.

“This is the worst thing I have ever eaten,” I said. 

Not only did it have no flavor, the noodles had the consistency of, well, worms.

“Yep,” Greg said between bites. “It’s pretty awful.”

He kept eating.

“How are you eating that?” I asked.

“All I’ve heard about for days are these noodles. You just had to have them. Drove all over town looking for them. Now, you don’t want them. I’m going to eat them no matter what.”

“Gross,” he said when he was done. “I hope you’ve learned your lesson. You need to leave some things alone.”

“Uhh-huuh,” I replied, taking another bite out of my juicy non-tofu hotdog. 

“I have.”