The most expensive stalk of broccoli ever

I think I paid around $3 at a Home Depot in early May for a tray of 9 broccoli seedlings.  I had tried to plant broccoli in the past with very little luck - I think because I started it too late in the season and broccoli is a cold-weather vegetable.

This year I assumed that my broccoli was once again going to fail.  Really early on, one of the plants got really thin and "stalky" looking and within days the broccoli that was just appearing flowered (which means it's ruined.)

It was disappointing, and I basically stopped caring about the broccoli.

But there's one shining star that emerging out of the 8 remaining plants.  This little guy.

My first stalk!

He was yummy, but I have a horror story about that experience as well.

My mother - two years or so ago when I first told her that I was going to attempt to grow broccoli - exclaimed, "Why would you want to grow broccoli!!?!?? There are always worms!!!"

"What!??!" I said disbelieving.  "The worms will be killed off when I cook it!!!"

Well, I'm here to tell you that we were BOTH right. 

Because, you see, when I was sitting at the dining room table, happily chomping on my first ever stalk of freshly steamed, home-grown broccoli (I was sooo proud! It was sooo tasty!!!), I stopped in mid-chew when I noticed a funny little curled up thing on my plate.  I examined it closely, poked it with my fork, and then gasped.

"Oh my god."

"What!?!??!" DH asked, quickly picking up on the note of concern in my voice.

"There's a worm.... on my broccoli," I said calmly.

There it was, just lying in all of its broccoli-green-colored glory, dead on my plate. Plump and juicy looking. Like it had been there all along.  It probably had been there all along.  And I was too far off in la-la land to even notice the dead creature on my dinner plate.

So, I continue to poke at my broccoli.  I rolled over a particularly large floret and there - right on my crown jewel broccoli stalk - was a second small green worm.


Yuk yuk yuk yuk yuk.... I can't say it enough.  Yuk.

I don't want to ruin your appetite by posting pictures of worms in case you happen to be eating right now, so I am going to refer you to some sites that have images of these worms, in case you're interested.  I know some of you are probably incredibly curious and thus incredibly annoyed that I am not showing these pictures right on this blog, but the rest of you are thanking me right now.  I can hear your mutters of thanks, I swear.

So, if you're still curious, go here or here (scroll down to the second half of the page - if you're only going to look at one picture, look at this second one.)

I explained the situation to DH while I carefully removed the second worm from the broccoli and slid it over next to its mate.  DH gagged and probably threw up in his mouth a little. I certainly did. My stomach was churning as I examined the rest of the florets and determined that all had been removed.  I was not convinced however, that I hadn't already eat one.  So what's a girl to do?

Well, here's where pride kicks in.  I am too proud and too stubborn to let these two little worms ruin this incredible momentous occasion. 

I took a deep breath.

I picked the worms up with a napkin, crunched it in my hand, and rolled it into a little ball.

I pushed the little ball to the center of the dining room table.

I announced... "I am not going to let those stupid little worms ruin  my enjoyment of this broccoli."  I picked up my fork, took another deep breath to try to calm my stomach... And then I proceeded to finish my broccoli.

To be completely honest, those little worms did ruin my enjoyment of that meal, but I wasn't going to let them get the best of me and I certainly wasn't going to throw away the only stalk of broccoli that I was ever able to successfully grow in my otherwise unremarkable existence. 

And if you're able to forget about everything that you just read, take a look at how beautiful, how green, and how amazing this broccoli looked when it was on my plate, fresh out of the steamer.

Yep.  That's the most expensive stalk of broccoli ever.  And perhaps the most traumatic.


Laura said...

Disgusting! I would have been totally done with dinner. Gag.

Lisa said...

I'm telling you, Laura - it's a pride thing. Stubborn, annoying pride!

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