April 17, 2010


Sensory lab in Cornell's NY Agricultural Station, NY
I am done from my Sensory evaluation midterm and i remembered an incident .
Three years ago, i participated as a sensory panelist for " Neophobia/Neophilia" .i.e how much we like or hate new food .
They presented to me 6 new foods i never tasted before in my life and i had to taste them 3 days per week. Some were satisfactory , some were tolerable over the two month tasting period, while only one was just unbearable. I used to taste just a milligram from it, and i I used to rush in the tasting.
Thus, it got the worst rating from me. Usually, I don’t like stereotyping food, or even judging food. But this one was the exception to my rule. It had a horrendous texture and taste.
Unfortunately, I didnt know what i was tasting. So, for two months i kept wondering about it , and supposedly i was not allowed to ask anyone about it !
Till I was fed up, I yearned to know why does it taste that bad to me.
I remember that I asked the researcher : “ Madam is this the eye of a cow ?”. I was not joking or mocking. I had a serious look on my face. So her reply was also serious: “ Are you sane? Ofcorse we wont be cooking cow eyes!! I cant believe that you thought that we were giving an eye to taste!”
Well, innocently, It really looked like the eye of something!! It was white, rubbery and covered with a slippery transparent layer and a black thing ( actually it was a seed ) in the middle!!. Yes like the cornea!!
Thanks god the tasting sessions were over. I saw the published results and knew what it was. It was Lychee: a fruit, a tropical berry!!


I googled everything about this Lychee/lichu . It has a pinkish beautiful skin before it is peeled off. ironically, enough, they stated that it is a fragranced fruit with a sweet taste. Apparently , it didn’t taste like that for me!!
Oh and well , this fruit is used for red tea, cheese cakes, fruit salads, and ice blended drinks!!!

At least now , if I wanted to go Mexico ,southern Africa or china, I will definitely avoid it!

P.S: For list of tropical fruits , you can check this link: http://sonic.net/~alden/Fruittroex.html#litchi