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Bad Reactions to Japanese Food

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Bad Reactions to Japanese Food

Postby lalaith » Fri 04.20.2007 5:51 pm

In my Japanese class we do the lesson from "Japanese for Busy People" and the rest of the class is spent doing cultural study, i.e. folding origami, watching DVDs, "show and tell" from the students, and trying Japanese food.

Last night the teacher brought something I'd never had before. It was a snack, a "cracker" made from rice flour, but fried not baked. (I've eaten the baked ones all my life.) They were about the size of a silver dollar but weren't flat, they had a curve to them. They were puffy and very crunchy. Not much flavor to them. They came individually wrapped.

I think I had four of them. And the acid indigestion started not long after. Acid indigestion is something I get once in a blue moon. But by the time I was driving home from class I had one arm wrapped across my stomach, it hurt that badly. I got home & headed immediately for the antacid tablets I take as calcium supplements. But this case was unique.

I took eight antacid tablets, finished off a nearly empty bottle of Pepto and even got the baking soda and was taking it. Nothing worked. I finally settled on just controlling it with Advil. It took four. And a couple hours later, when the Advil wore off, the acid indigestion was still there. It was 3:30 in the morning before it finally went away enough to sleep. My stomach is still bothering me a little today.

The only other time I've had a bad reaction to Japanese food was the first (and only) time I ate sushi. I was truly enjoying it when I ate a piece -- I don't know what -- as soon as it went down, it headed back up and I was running full speed to the bathroom with my hand clamped over my mouth trying not to do a George H.W. Bush at the table.

So I was wondering, what bad experiences other people have had with Japanese cuisine?

(This is not the natto thread. Unless you had an interesting physiological reaction to natto.)
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RE: Bad Reactions to Japanese Food

Postby tanuki » Fri 04.20.2007 6:20 pm

Do wasabi experiences count? ;)
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RE: Bad Reactions to Japanese Food

Postby flammable hippo » Fri 04.20.2007 6:26 pm

Do wasabi experiences count?


I hope so. I once ate an entire spoonful of wasabi thinking it was guacamole...
It made me cry :(
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RE: Bad Reactions to Japanese Food

Postby Yudan Taiteki » Fri 04.20.2007 6:27 pm

If you're talking about literal bad experiences and not just foods you don't like, I think that two instances spring to mind.

The first was a 5000-yen all-you-can-eat sushi that I went to for my birthday (it was good quality sushi). I ate way too much; that's one of the only times in my life I can remember eating so much that I felt physically ill later and actually still felt full the next morning (I am always hungry for breakfast).

The second was when I visited the deputy mayor's house and his wife made these ohagi. I really, really do not like anko. I don't know exactly why. I have tried it numerous times, but I've never been able to get over my distaste for it. But here I had to eat ohagi to be polite. It was horrible.
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RE: Bad Reactions to Japanese Food

Postby Steve_Poppers » Fri 04.20.2007 6:34 pm

A spoonful of wasabi? You poor, poor thing...

Incidentally, I've never had any problems with the Japanese food I've eaten so far. I really haven't eaten much more than sushi or ramen. Nothing unusual.

Sorry for being so useless. :D
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RE: Bad Reactions to Japanese Food

Postby richvh » Fri 04.20.2007 6:42 pm

Soon after I arrived in Japan, I went to the NCO club for dinner and ordered... don't remember what, but there was rice with it, and being used to eating rice with lots of gravy, I poured lots of soy sauce on my rice, which needless to say became inedible.

Other than that, no bad experiences with Japanese food (but then, I didn't experiment all that much.)
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RE: Bad Reactions to Japanese Food

Postby lalaith » Sat 04.21.2007 2:13 am

flammable hippo wrote:
I hope so. I once ate an entire spoonful of wasabi thinking it was guacamole...
It made me cry :(


:o I didn't think it was possible to eat a spoonful of wasabi and live. I saw this horror movie once where these people were stranded on an island. The water had tiny creatures that would eat you alive, and one person drank the water. What happened next is what I thought would happen after a spoonful of wasabi.


Yudan Taiteki wrote:
The second was when I visited the deputy mayor's house and his wife made these ohagi. I really, really do not like anko. I don't know exactly why. I have tried it numerous times, but I've never been able to get over my distaste for it. But here I had to eat ohagi to be polite. It was horrible.


Ohagi -- good.

Ohagi with anko -- bad.

I bit into what I thought was a jelly donut. It turned out to be filled with anko. Yuck.

But that's some fancy company you were keeping there. The deputy mayor's house. I remember from another thread you said JET assigned you to somewhere out in the boonies, so I'm guessing it wasn't the deputy mayor of 京都, but still some nice company. Did they invite all the JET instructors for dinner or did they just take a liking to you?


richvh wrote:
Soon after I arrived in Japan, I went to the NCO club for dinner and ordered... don't remember what, but there was rice with it, and being used to eating rice with lots of gravy, I poured lots of soy sauce on my rice, which needless to say became inedible.


When we were living in Japan we went out to a Japanese restaurant. We didn't do it often. (And if the opportunity ever comes up in a thread, I'll have to tell about this amazing seafood restaurant we ate at once). This was a real Japanese restaurant, not one that catered to Gaijin. I can remember the difficulty the owner had in finding forks for us kids. They had a platform at the front of the restaurant. Not sure what it was for because it also had a dining table on it, so I don't know if they used it for performances. It was empty and I so wanted to eat up there. I asked my parents & they checked with the restaurant who said it was okay, so I got to sit up there by myself and eat my dinner.

I was young enough that my mother always poured the soy sauce on my rice for me. I'd never done it before. I poured on the soy sauce and most of it disappeared between the grains of rice, so I just kept pouring. I think I put half a bottle of soy sauce on there. When I had eaten the portion of rice heaped above the bowl, I discovered the rest of it was in a pool of soy sauce. Definitely inedible.

Rice and gravy: The first time I heard of rice and gravy it was when we moved to Mississippi. I was appalled at the notion. Gravy? Instead of soy sauce? I can eat it, but I still don't care for it. For that matter, I don't care for the American style white rice. I never serve it, in my home if it's white rice, then it's the Japanese style.


Steve_Poppers wrote:
Incidentally, I've never had any problems with the Japanese food I've eaten so far. I really haven't eaten much more than sushi or ramen. Nothing unusual.

Sorry for being so useless.


Well, clearly you need to experiment some more. Judging from that other thread, I suggest you try some natto. :D

It's my thread, so I guess I can take it off topic.
I downloaded Rikaichan. I was trying it, looking through an old thread I stumbled across about the "Origins of the Japanese". Someone had posted an article that I'm sure is of great interest to genetic anthropologists -- which I am not. Tspoonami posted a response in Japanese, and I passed the cursor over it. Not an exact translation, but the gist of it was that his head had exploded. I laughed so hard, that for the first time today, I forgot how much my stomach was hurting from that Japanese snack yesterday. And here I thought all those comments in Japanese would be erudite and educational.
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RE: Bad Reactions to Japanese Food

Postby doinkies » Sat 04.21.2007 2:19 am

Once I went to Japantown in San Jose with my mom and a 日系人 friend of hers. We stopped by a manjuu shop there that the friend liked, and we got a box of it. Seeing that I liked the manjuu, the friend offered me more and more from the box, and I ended up eating a bit too much. Well, that night, while I was sleeping, the manjuu striked back, and I began feeling nauseous. Fortunately, I made it to the bathroom in time...

I think that's really the only doinky experience I've had with Japanese food.
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RE: Bad Reactions to Japanese Food

Postby spin13 » Sat 04.21.2007 3:03 am

If you're already suffering from stomach cramps and/or in an otherwise dilapidated state, it may be wise to avoid eating plate after plate of tori sashimi. 食あたり was not a word I wanted to learn.

My wallet has had numerous bad reactions to raw oysters. When they're 25 cents (USD) per it's not unreasonable to order a dozen or two. When they're 100+ JPY perhaps one should reconsider.

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RE: Bad Reactions to Japanese Food

Postby caroline » Sat 04.21.2007 7:33 am

There is something I can't eat... and if you can tell its name, I will be grateful:

it's some sort of translucent worm, but it is seafood, as I saw it in kaitenzuchi too.

it has two small black eyes that look at you, is something like 4 cm long, thin, and comes on its own in a small plate when proposed as part of breakfast in a ryokan.

I guess it's cultural that I can't eat something with its eyes still on and clearly intented to be eaten (as people around me did just that)... but I've never be able to pass the stage of greeting them (they come in a bunch) and leaving them alone. :D
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RE: Bad Reactions to Japanese Food

Postby coco » Sat 04.21.2007 9:22 am

Carolineさん
もしかすると「しらうお(白魚)↓」?
http://www.zukan-bouz.com/kyuriuo/sirauo.html
http://sumitako.gozaru.jp/sirouo.htm
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RE: Bad Reactions to Japanese Food

Postby caroline » Sat 04.21.2007 9:42 am

ココさん、
 
あれですね!

今、おかけさまで、名前を知っています。

生のをだけ見たことがありました。

どうもありがとうございました。

It's one more reason among many others to be grateful to you :)
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RE: Bad Reactions to Japanese Food

Postby ghosthacker » Sat 04.21.2007 10:14 am

I have eaten lots of Japanese food only time I have ever had a problem was when ,as a 22 year old kid, I tried to make sushi on my own using store brought sole!!!!

Needless to say I don't recommend this :)
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RE: Bad Reactions to Japanese Food

Postby Obsessed_Saru » Sun 04.22.2007 3:56 pm

One time I ate three bags of nori and got sick...does that count? ;)
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RE: Bad Reactions to Japanese Food

Postby Steve_Poppers » Sun 04.22.2007 10:03 pm

I would love to try natto. I hear that nihonjin find it amazing to find Americans who enjoy it. I'd love to be one of them. Unfortunately, I don't know where I could get some. Perhaps in Pittsburgh...
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