Monday, October 10, 2005

The Word Nuts is Often Slang for Testes

This weekend I bought a jar of Nutella.

I’ve always been afraid of this product. It’s usually perched on the top shelf above the peanut butter and jelly at the grocery store. Typically there are only three or four jars on the shelf, so it’s apparent that Nutella isn’t among the most popular food items at our Pick & Save.

I took the lack of local consumer enthusiasm for this product as a clue that I was right about it tasting nasty. I always assumed Nutella would taste like bitter, chocolaty ass drippings. It would be another one of those flavors that requires years of childhood conditioning in Europe in order to be able to tolerate it, let alone appreciate it. Think Marmite. Plus, I’m not a huge chocolate fan so I always looked at Nutella as if each jar contained a dead fetus.

Then, when Deb and I were in Paris, I watched a guy making crepes in front of a café. These crepe stands are everywhere and some of the contraptions dedicated to making this popular street food are fascinating. Usually, they make the crepes on a huge round griddle that gets batter spread perfectly over its heated surface. After the batter cooks, it’s then expertly folded up like a cone with every ingredient you could imagine. From meat to fresh fruit, you could get a crepe with just about anything you wanted folded into it.

I noticed a lot of people getting their crepes stuffed with Nutella. And I do mean stuffed. The crepe-to-Nutella ratio seemed to be at least three to one and I watched these people walk around with dark brown Nutella smeared all over their faces. I’m assuming all of these people couldn’t be tourists so if Parisians, the most appearance aware population on the planet, didn’t mind getting their mugs seemingly poo-stained then I thought there must be something to this Nutella stuff.

I regret that I didn’t try one myself while we were in Pairs. So, five months later, I bought a jar. As soon as Deb and I put away the groceries I cracked it open and grabbed a spoon.

It is good.

Nutella is primarily hazelnut spread with some milk and cocoa. So while it tastes like chocolate there’s a very subtle, amaretto-like flavor lurking around in each bite. Maybe it’s not amaretto, but it certainly is nutty. Nut. Nutella. Anyway, this stuff was developed in Italy in order to help stretch out cocoa supplies that were being rationed during World War II. What that has to do with me getting over my fear of Nutella I’m not sure. But I thought it was interesting. I also compared nutritional values of Nutella to peanut butter and they are similar despite peanut butter having a lot more protein. Again, I don’t know what that has to do with me taking the Nutella plunge but I always want to provide you with just enough legitimate information to reward you for weeding through the rest of my bullshit.

I’d say the information-to-bullshit ratio is at least 12 to 1.

Allie and Julia love the stuff. I started dipping Teddy Grahams in the Nutella then I’d pop the little bears into their mouths. I fed them because no matter what the quantity is, chocolate always winds up outside their mouths. It’s amazing and this time was no exception. There’s nothing I can do; it must ooze out of their pores or something.

Deb refused to try the Nutella.

I was going to write something about Deb hating nuts. However I don’t think you’d let me get away with that especially when I’d have to confess to really being into nuts.

Yeah, I just love nuts.

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