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Last time, I showed you a preview of what was to come, let’s introduce the cast of characters again.

Here’s what I’ll be tasting today. This translucent-white canned foods group.

Let’s start with the most translucent.

Attap fruit in syrup. So clear and white it’s almost impossible to take a picture of, but that didn’t stop the canners. It might as well be a photo of snow.

Upon opening, I’m greeted with a viscous fluid. This is industrial strength syrup.

HEAVY syrup. No smell, yet. Nothing can permeate the protective coating.

Once in a bowl, they look like melty ice cubes. But they are more like mucous cubes.

Here goes nothing.

It tastes a lot like apricots. But firm like an olive, and slightly gritty like a pear. Slimy, mild. Too sweet to be a snack, not tasty enough to be a dessert.

I still have no concept of what it’s like in the wild. Wikipedia don’t fail me now… OK. Marsh palm fruits.

Moving along.

Almond Jelly in a can. A lot of it. Oh boy.

As I opened it, water appeared. Maybe this isn’t a firm, white jelly, like pictured on the can.

Nope. It is.

Just a little water on the top. If anything, it’s more dense than I anticipated. My dreams of making a peanut butter and almond jelly sandwich have been crushed.

My dull spoon is no match for the impressive cohesiveness of the jelly monster.

Finally, I managed to get a chunk of the beast.

I should tell you that I really like almond flavoring. I love almond biscotti, cookies, anything with almond extract. I even shower with almond soap. I thought this could be an interesting thing to try, and that I would probably really like it. It smelled delicious.

It tastes like a raincoat.

Sure a raincoat washed in almond water, but nothing got inside. Texture like very hard egg custard. Finishes with a hint of grandmother’s house. Not very good.

The flavor was so minimal, I took a few more bites to try to place it. Nothing. If boiled celery was a jell-o flavor, maybe it would taste like this.

Also, here’s a video of the impressive wobble.

Oh yes, the ingredients.


Soybean Curd Jelly with Mung Bean and Job’s Tears. You look familiar. Didn’t I once eat someone you know?

Yes, this is quite similar to “Peanut soup with milk”, my first adventure. I assume this is his savory cousin.

I know it means different things in different places, but I’d feel like I was leaving something out of the review if I didn’t point out the swastika.
I guess it’s not kosher.

Once again, our friend Foldy Spoon has joined us. (I love Foldy Spoon.)

Yes, yes. All good, now let’s eat.

Smells surprisingly sweet and pungently creamy. Like frosting and rust. But it can’t be sweet, right? Beans, tofu. That’s a soup.

Most of the beans stayed in the can, after the initial pour.

Looks like pond water.

Correction: Pond water with chicken fat floating in it. But it’s not fat. It’s tofu jelly.

And the big moment… it tastes like cereal milk with soft beans in it. Kind of like a terrible recipe for baked beans that you left to cook for way too long, and then you poured soy milk all over it.

The tofu is nothing but an illusion. It’s the softest thing I’ve ever eaten. Imagine a structure made of cotton candy submerged in water. It’s just not there.

Why is it so sweet? Cinnamon Toast Crunch without the the toast or crunch. Cinnamon Bean Squish.

For package comparison.

And let’s have a look at those ingredients now.

Whoa. What?

Why? Why is this not suitable for pregnant women? What did I just eat?

Oh well, one more.

Basil Seed Drink. Sounds delicious. And a picture of what is clearly a bowl of frog eggs? Deal sealed.

Let’s jump right in, no time to waste. That is a lumpy viscous liquid you see pouring into my “science glass”. It appears to be made entirely of large amoebas.

At this point I can smell something sharp. Pear juice cut with crayons and a touch of glass cleaner. And bananas. No basil, no honey. Just sharp, waxy,  juicy bananas.

Yep. 10 out of 10 for packaging truth. All of those little eyeballs want me to drink them.

Let do this! It tastes like bananas and water.  Oh and little, lumpy lumps.

I try desperately to bite one, but the little, lumpy lumps avoid my teeth at all costs.

As you can see, they are protected by a force field. Completely impenetrable.

OH! There you are! The predominant flavor is the last ingredient. Of course.

That’s ridiculous.

So, that’s it for this week’s tasting–unless…

I’ve got an idea.

Translucent mush bowl is part of this canned, white breakfast.

I did end up tasting them all at once, and this is the report.

Attap fruit has the most texture. It stayed around the longest. All the others just mushed together into a whitish-tasting pile of gritty, milky, grassy, hay-flavored, sugar-sludge. So, yeah. Not great.

See ya next week!


Check out more “Adventures in eating.

16 Comments leave one →
  1. December 17, 2011 11:28 pm

    I lost it at ‘Job’s Tears’. How do people come up with these things, I will never know 😦

    I think the last thing’s main point is its texture, which kinda tickles the tongue (you know what I mean). I will also never understand just how they wrap the seeds in a blob of unbreakable liquid. Probably science.

    • September 6, 2013 1:03 am

      I googled Job’s tears, and apparently that’s a common name for coix seeds (not that those are common outside of Asia anyway). Their presence in the food is also the reason it is not suitable for pregnant women – webmd says “It might be UNSAFE to take Job’s tears if you are pregnant. Research in animals suggests that it can poison a developing embryo. It can also cause the uterus to contract, and this might harm the pregnancy.”

      Basil seeds form the jelly-like coating in response to being soaked in water, so the science involved was probably just “let’s soak these seeds in water and see what happens.”

  2. December 18, 2011 12:00 am

    wtf is nature gum? i think pregnant women aren’t supposed to eat raw eggs or fish, so it’s probably fish.

  3. Lilia permalink
    December 18, 2011 2:35 pm

    Hi Kyle, you’re silly. This looks yucky.

    • December 18, 2011 2:43 pm

      Dictated but not read, I assume.

      • Liz permalink
        December 18, 2011 3:21 pm

        Yep, but she’ll be commenting herself very soon.

  4. Liz permalink
    December 18, 2011 2:38 pm

    Job’s Tears is a possible abortifacient. I’m more concerned by the directions. “Do not warmed over 72 hours” and “Do not heated by the fire or microwave directly”. I feel like if you assume what is meant by that you might be tragically mistaken.

    • December 18, 2011 2:43 pm

      How about that? Abortifacient. I figure the directions mean “don’t leave it out for 3 days” and “don’t put the can in the microwave or fireplace”. But I am making a lot of assumptions. In any case, this is a dangerous foodstuff.

  5. Deborah Hepworth permalink
    December 20, 2011 12:15 pm

    My skin actually crawled when I saw the Basil seed drink poured into your glass. I was actually shaking with anticipation and nervous laughter as I read on…that is THE most disgusting ever. It does remind me of eyeballs. YUCK

    • December 20, 2011 7:02 pm

      For what it’s worth, the basil seed drink was perhaps the most harmless thing I’ve ever tried. It was smooth, lightly banana’d, and the seeds were so slippery they were frictionless and almost indistinguishable from the water. Not good, but a solid neutral.

  6. December 21, 2011 6:55 am

    Wow, as enticing as all of the above look/sound the basil drink certainly LOOKS the worst. I’ve left glasses of squash for prolonged periods with similar looking results. They never really sold themselves to me as a quaffable quencher, in the same way the frogspawn beverage similarly doesn’t.

  7. December 22, 2011 9:58 am

    Soy should not be consumed during pregnancy — since it has a high level of estrogen. It’s not good for growing babies.

    Note: It’s also not good for little boy to consume large amounts of Soy.

  8. January 14, 2012 4:53 pm

    “Tasted like a raincoat”? I may never get that image out of my mind …

  9. April 23, 2012 7:57 pm

    The swistaka may
    have had a Jain or hindu
    significance, telling the
    buyer the product was
    in sync with their dietary
    codes or something.

  10. May 4, 2012 3:50 am

    ‘Job’s Tears’ is not good for pregnant women : )

  11. Kara 'Bout It permalink
    June 1, 2012 11:59 pm

    Just a few hours ago, a temporary roommate at the house I just moved into revealed that he had a can of the basil seed drink. I had never heard of it. Now, I find this website… maybe it means I should drink it!

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