I’m not sure if I ever told you this before, but I used to hate cream cheese. And then one day, when I decided to keep my mouth shut, I tried it for the first time.
I was leaving my then-boyfriend’s mom’s house, heading back to Jersey at 10 in the morning. I never thought she liked me, as any girl thinks about her boyfriend’s mother. On that particular morning, as I stuffed my sleepover clothes into a backpack, she climbed the stairs and brought me a bagel for the road. The bagel was smeared with cream cheese.
On any other morning, leaving from any other household, I would offer my thanks, and ask for a knife and butter to remedy the situation. I hated cream cheese that much. I wouldn’t even fake it.
But on that particular morning, with that particular boyfriend’s mother, I shut up the cream cheese hater inside me and graciously tucked the bagel into my backpack.
But somewhere along the nondescript I-95 North, I reached into my bag and took a bite. It tasted tangy. And too creamy. Not altogether terrible, though. So I ate a few more bites, deciding cream cheese no longer was an enemy. I never did resolve the uneasy feelings about the cream cheese provider, however.
That happened many years ago, when I only ate Caesar salads and egg and cheese sandwiches. And now cream cheese is, I will say, my life. Along with eggs and butter, it remains a staple in my fridge. Cream cheese moved way beyond the bagel now. It’s actually been saving plenty of dishes.
I threw it in with a cabbage and sweet potato hash, letting it soften the roughage. I let it melt into a faintly seasoned pureed vegetable soup to add flavor and creaminess. And that’s only in the last 5 days. But I think it’s fair to say, cream cheese saves the day.