Thursday, 20 September 2007

What Would You Miss???

If you left the country you were living in for some foreign shore what would you miss the most?

I asked my sister Janice, who now lives in Australia, this question and was surprised how long her answer was. You can just imagine how a Parisian would miss real croissants, an Italian would feel lost without a descent espresso from the corner coffee shop or an Australian without Tim- Tams and Vegemite.

While Janice was very excited that they had found a South African shop, which stocks local favorites, it is not the same as being able to walk into any corner cafe and buy products you grew up with. Not to mention the extra costs involved.

If I had to leave, these are some of the things I would hate to do without. Many of these products are available wherever you find South Africans, but can only be bought with careful planning and lots of money.

Mrs Balls Chutney.
This thick, brown, sweet and spicy chutney is a staple at any braai, where you serve broerewors. I always have a 1kg bottle in my fridge, which I use all the time.
A real favorite is my Mayonnaise and Chutney Chicken, which I will share with you soon. It is so easy, and is especially good if you are catering for large groups. I served this at wedding I catered for last year, for 120 people, everyone wanted seconds of the chicken!!

Biltong and Droëwors
Biltong is a kind of dried meat that originated in South Africa. Many kinds of flesh can be used to make it, ranging from beef through game meats to fillets of ostrich from commercial farms. It is typically made from raw fillets of meat cut into strips following the grain of the muscle, or flat pieces sliced across the grain.
Droëwors is a popular South African snack food , made by drying the traditional, spiced boerewors sausage. Droëwors is unusual among dried meats, in being dried quickly in warm, dry conditions, unlike traditional Italian cured Salami, which are dried slowly in relatively cold and humid conditions.

These are crisp whole-wheat biscuits. While they often form a staple in South African weight-loss plans, they really aren't that slimming eaten in large amounts, three biscuits are the same as 1 slice of whole-wheat bread . They are terribly moreish (probably why they don't work when I am trying to shed some pounds), and while they team up well with just about anything, they are just as good plain.

Cook Sisters
I don't eat these very often, but when I do I can't stop until I've had far too many. They are terribly sweet, you could drink a cup of sugar syrup and be left with the same sick feeling. The texture of these crispy plaited doughnuts soaked in a thick, slightly gingered syrup, leaves you with a very special sick feeling. I wish I could explain it better, but you have to bite into one to understand what the taste is.

These are a few of the things I would miss about home, not to mention the people, the beauty, the culture.

To end off I thought I would share a few funny questions from foreigners.

Q: Will I be able to speak English most places I go? (USA)
A: Yes, but you will have to learn to speak it first

Q: I want to walk from Durban to Cape Town - can I follow the railroad tracks? (Sweden)
A: Sure, it's only two thousand kilometres take lots of water...

Q: Can you tell me the regions in South Africa where the female population is smaller than the male population? (Italy)
A: Yes, gay nightclubs.

My favorite -
Q: Are there supermarkets in Cape Town and is milk available all year round? (Germany)
A: No, we are a peaceful civilisation of vegan hunter-gatherers. Milk is illegal

1 comment:

Jeanne said...

Living in London, I'm very lucky as expats go... We have Mrs Balls and Aromat in our local supermarkets, as well as Nando's sauces. And if I want Provitas or biltong or Savanna cider or caramel treat or peppermint crisp, there are South African shops all over London that sell these at not-out-of-reach prices. The things I can't get but crave are Melrose cheese spread and Anchovette (against some EU regulations apparently...) I do know, however, that in other countries these SA goodies are far harder to come by - I've had a fellow blogger in tears of gratitude after posting some Romany Creams to her in Sweden ;-)

Jeremiah 17: 7-8

"Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in Him. He will be like a tree planted by the water."

It is not your business to succeed, but to do what is right : when you have done so, the rest lies with God.
C.S. Lewis

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