Sunday, April 23, 2006

Day 15: Eating Natto Like Civilized People

As Valerie outlines below, today we commenced to eat natto as most people do, i.e. with other stuff. Many people have told us that we were crazy to eat the beans by themselves, and that this was not proper and that no real natto aficionado would do this. Whatever. The point is that by Day 15 I was able to actually enjoy a bowl of natto with soy sauce, scallions and mustard--despite the fact that two weeks ago I was choking on the stuff. I honestly believe that we would not have gotten to this point if we had not forced ourselves to eat the natto in its raw form. It's true we could have forced ourselves to eat natto with scallions and soy sauce, but I think it would have taken longer than 15 days to acquire the taste. My anecdotal control group (Mariya), still found the natto disgusting even when mixed with the other ingredients. I think if she had been force-feeding plain natto to herself for the last two weeks she would feel differently. But she is not stupid enough to do this, so she still has the appropriate reaction to natto, which is that it is gross. For my part, I am a convert. I'm not saying that I want to eat it every day (though I will do so for some time as we define the next steps in this experiment), but I can definitely add it to the list of foodstuffs that I will enjoy from time to time.

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