Why Cucumbers + Citrus = A Must

Any time a recipe calls for cucumbers, I have to squeeze a bit of citrus over them. It’s a necessity.. not in the same way I tell everyone that coffee is a necessity.. but in the way that I could otherwise go into anaphylactic shock if I don’t. It just so happens that the flavors work well together.

Let me back up.cukesandcitrusCucumbers are on my list of allergy-triggering foods. However, I’ve never been allergic to pickles because, I’m guessing, the vinegar neutralizes the proteins in cucumber that are similar to ragweed pollen.┬áSince citrus juice has the same effect on the proteins, I’ve been able to safely consume cucumbers now for a number of years.. which has been AWESOME since I’ve always loved the crisp, refreshing flavor.

I really wish I had similar solutions for my other trigger-foods. A tiny bite won’t kill me, just some uncomfortable oral itchiness, but as I sadly discovered after eating a whole slice of blueberry-banana bread (banana was the culprit), too much of it will make my throat swell up enough to make it difficult to breathe.

Why did I eat that whole slice of blueberry-banana bread although I knew I was allergic to bananas? Because it was soo.. sooo… goooooood. And.. I like to live dangerously.. something Graham discovered on our first date at Jack’s Firehouse where they serve you small chocolate chip cookies after dinner.

Me (To Graham): Can you tell if these have walnuts in them?

Graham: No, I can’t.

Me: Oh.. It’s just that I’m allergic to walnuts.

Graham: What happens if you eat walnuts?

Me: My mouth gets itchy, then my throat closes up, and I can’t breathe (as I take a small nibble of the cookie).

Graham watched with panicked horror, wondering if he was witnessing a cry for help as I voluntarily behaved against self-preservation.

Me: Yep. Walnuts.

For the record, I didn’t go into anaphylactic shock. I once sat down and wrote out the list of foods that cause me to break out, trying to figure out what they might have in common:

allergyilllustration

When I looked the list up and down, I suddenly realized the answer.

They were all foods that made it into the category of sexual euphemisms.

I really can’t help thinking what Freud would say.freudI blame┬ábeing raised a Korean Catholic.

Stacy