Escargots is a fancy (French) way of saying snails. You typically find escargots cooked in garlic butter that makes anything taste better.
The good news is that this isn't really about escargots but overcoming obstacles to trying new food.
There was this fancy restaurant when I was a child, and one of its specialties was escargots. My parents would eat them, but I figured at the time that I didn't need to eat snails.
You can lead a very productive life and never have escargots. Ever.
When I had a chance earlier this summer to have escargots at that same restaurant, I took advantage of the opportunity.
By this point, I certainly have eaten enough exotic animals and creatures that escargots weren't a big deal. So I was going to overcome the idea of eating snails.
Some people would be smart to try them by themselves in case something went wrong. I was not one of those people. I tried them in a fancy dinner with people I hadn't seen in awhile.
Escargots is not a cheap dish, even in a fancy restaurant in a small town. $12 for not much food and it wasn't even a hipster place.
The snails were in 6 holes on the dish. They weren't particularly pretty in appearance. If we were tasting with the eyes, we would have stopped quickly.
Getting them out of the dish was fun but not really why you eat. Food is about taste.
I popped the first one in my mouth. A bit chewy. Not much taste. But I could swallow them.
Eating snails is not that exciting. Not much taste or texture. But I ate them. I ate all of them. But snails aren't interesting to eat. This was the blandest creature I had eaten, and I've had very dry ostrich meat.
My fear as a small child is that snails would be icky to eat. As an adult, I was more likely to wonder why I paid $12 for this.
I didn't gag or feel sick or hate snails. But I sure didn't love them either.
If I were in the woods, and snails were all I had to eat, I would love them for their protein and sustenance. But snails in a more civilized setting don't pass the taste test.
Still the point of trying escargots — snails — was to overcome childhood feelings about trying uncertain foods. I'm about to embark on a travel adventure where I hope to try moose and possibly seal. They might taste fine or not, but I'm willing to be more adventurous.
Hopefully, your own version of escargots is a lot less expensive and a lot more interesting to eat. Give it a shot and even if you don't like that dish, you would know that for certain.
photo credit: c'est moi