I was reminded this weekend about how much I fear cottage cheese. While the DH and I were out for lunch over the weekend, a woman at the table next to us enjoyed a healthy fruit platter. Which featured a big scoop of cottage cheese.

Just catching a glimpse of it was enough to make my saliva dry up.

My fear of this healthy living staple is based on texture, appearance and taste. After conducting careful research (I tried it once, and then a little bit was on a piece of melon I took off of an all-you-can-eat buffet) I've been able to put together the following:

Texture: It's lumpy. As if it hasn't been mixed together properly, like some people's attempts at gravy. Ick factor of 15 on a scale of 1-10.

Appearance: A scoop of stucco anyone? Or bleached-out brain matter?

Taste: Please don't make me go there people. I've blocked it out of my mind and I have no desire to bring that particular memory back.

Then again, just thinking about cottage cheese has made me lose my appetite. Is that the secret? Does anyone really enjoy eating cottage cheese?

A lifetime ago, on an "all-inclusive" holiday at a rundown resort in the Bahamas, I watched my travelling companion wolf down cottage cheese at breakfast and lunch. Never dinner; that was when she'd have a single chicken breast.

Of course, no one wants to admit that a particular food item could bring them to tears, so I tried to find ways to avoid looking in her direction for two of the three meals a day. She probably just thought I considered the wait staff to be adorable, or the plastic flowers in the centrepiece really, really interesting.

Then, on the second-last morning, she came back to our table with two plates of fruit. And cottage cheese.

"Try this," she said, placing one of the plates in front of me. "the mango and guava are amazing."

The mound of stucco was still shaking a bit, reminding me of an active albino volcano.

Across the room, someone dropped a glass. A few patrons applauded while the staff scurried around in search of a broom. While my girlfriend was distracted, I scraped the offending dairy product into a napkin and chucked it at the table next to us.

Unfortunately, it never made it to that destination; it landed with a soft thud on the floor. Which was totally fine, until our waiter happened to step on it and slide over into the next section, leaving a white lumpy trail behind him.

"That's weird," my girlfriend said, oblivious to our waiter's antics and eyeing the now-empty section of my plate. "I could have sworn I gave you a scoop of cheese." She lifted her plate and brought it closer to mine, ready to slide some of the offending substance onto it.

"Oh no, that's okay," I said, getting up from the table. "I'm going to head back upstairs and change into my bathing suit. See you at the pool."

That's when I stepped onto the hazardous stripe on the floor and totally wiped out.

Okay, maybe that's the reason cottage cheese scares me.