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Now, I don’t want anyone to get the idea that I am some sort if gourmand who is making amazing healthful many-coursed meals every night. However, I do have a number of go-to meals in my arsenal that are rather tasty (I’m talking about you Creamy Prosciutto Pasta!)

BUT, there are some ingredients that I will not use. It could be the easiest, most healthy, most spot-on dish and I will turn the page if it has one of these items. And it’s not because the ingredient is too expensive or hard to find. It’s really much more arbitrary than that. Behold:

1) Leeks – Mmm, vaguely oniony tasting overgrown scallions that are really hard to clean. Why?

2) Buttermilk – I think it’s just the principal of the thing. I don’t have a good reason except it seems like you buy a whole thing of buttermilk for a few tablespoons and then you are stuck with a half gallon of buttermilk. Why can’t they sell it in half pints like heavy cream? But more importantly, it leads me to….

3) Cream of Tartar – First, I hate this – spice? herb? seasoning?- because what the hell is it? Creamy? Tartary? What does that even mean?  But the thing that really sticks in my craw is that the substitute for buttermilk is mixing cream of tartar with milk.  So I don’t have buttermilk and they expect me to have cream of tartar? What?

4) Lastly, (and I reserve the right to to add to this list at any time.) anything licorice flavored (anise, fennel, Sambuca).  Licorice (along with coconut and banana) are very polarizing ingredients. I hate licorice so that is that. I get particular thrill when there is fennel and leeks in the same recipe – It makes me strangely gleeful because it’s like I’m stickin’ it to all those recipe makers!

Send us your recipe deal breakers (arbitrary or not)!