i am convinced that the uglier food is the better it tastes.
case in point: this quickly-throw-together mix of marinated artichokes, kalamata olives, shiitake & maitake mushrooms, lemon, garlic & red chili flakes over spaghetti. it was salty and slightly spicy and mouthwatery, plus a little tart and bright from the lemon, and it was just what i needed after a less-than-wonderful day at work. (turns out when i don't get enough sleep, i'm super cranky - and neither i nor my students really have a good time with that.)
i love pasta dishes where the prep time is no more than the time needed for the noodles to cook, like this one.
and it still strikes me as really funny that i love to eat this kind of stuff, since i used to be so olive- and mushroom-phobic. i'm actually more likely to order EXTRA mushrooms when i'm eating out now instead of asking for them to be withheld. i sometimes think about the time i wasted not eating those briny and earthy treats, respectively, but i probably wouldn't have the appreciation for them i do now had i always been a fan.
at least i came around, right?