Today I went out to lunch with a group of people from work, something I generally don’t do since I’m not terribly close socially with many people I work with, plus I’m pretty introverted. In any event, we went to a Vietnamese restaurant nearby. I was the only one that had eaten there before so they asked me what was good. I told them, “Well, obviously I only have experience with the last two pages of the menu (the vegetarian dishes), but they’ve all be good so far.” Everyone except for one person took a quick glance at the back of the menu and then returned looking through the regular meat dishes.
I was pleased, though, that the one person saw a soup from that page that he thought looked good and ordered it. I asked him afterwards what he thought about it and he said he enjoyed it. I told him, “It makes me happy when non-vegetarians try something with tofu, something outside of their comfort zone.”
He told me that he had never had tofu before. “Were those the fried white chunks?” he asked. I told him they were and explained about how the fried tofu in soups usually just have the flavor in the crust whereas you can also marinate tofu to infuse flavor into it. He seemed interested.
It just impressed me that someone who had never had tofu didn’t shy away from the dish just because there was something unfamiliar in it. It’s one of those small things that makes me realize that not everyone else in the world requires meat at every meal they eat.