Let me ask you a question: what is your most favourite food?
For the vast majority of my life, my answer to this question would have been "steak". The peculiar thing about this said choice of mine is that for the majority of my life, when steak was my answer to the above question, I was in no position to have much steak. My parents would serve me with regular servings of steak, but frankly given their financial position and my mother's approach to cooking we are not talking about the world's best steaks here. No disrespect, but when I think of my mother's steaks the image that pops up in my mind is that of a tough sandal.
The years did not render my steakly years better. Getting a good steak in Israel used to mean going to a restaurant with good steak offerings, and these are not that common or cheap. Even less common was the availability of good company to go to such a restaurant with.
Only when I moved to Australia did the picture change. Suddenly, good steaks are everywhere; good steaks are affordable; good steaks are easy to cook at home on my own barbecue. Steak heaven.
Or is it?
Roughly at the same time steaks became easy as pie my preferences started changing. I started becoming more aware of the fact a sentient animal was murdered for the pleasure of my stomach. I started becoming aware of the beef industry's environmental impact. I started becoming more aware of the health impacts of red meat on one hand and barbecue cooking on the other (in case you were unaware, it is very much unlikely barbecues would have received health approval were they to be invented now). Clearly, my stomach no longer belongs to the steak.
There is a new king in town. There is one food now that utterly dominates my dreams: it's the one food I can happily live with for breakfast, lunch and dinner; it's the one food I had available for the bulk of my life; it's one food that's actually not that bad for one to eat. It's called humus, and for reasons unclear to yours truly but regularly lamented on these very pages it is one food that is very hard to put one's hands on at Australia. At least in its higher quality manifestations.
And this is why I am suggesting that the things that attract us the most are often things that are generally not that attractive in the first place; they are just hard to get.