"Discover Cooking, Discuss Life."

Go Back   Discuss Cooking - Cooking Forums > The Back Porch > Off Topic Discussions
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 11-28-2007, 04:46 PM   #1
Assistant Cook
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Mexico :(
Posts: 32
Cooking Culture Shock

Anyone else move to a different country and find it hard to figure out what to cook for a while?
I'm from Texas, but currently living in Mexico. We live an hour away from Wal-Mart, which has the most variety of different foods. The local grocery store has considerably less. Every time I head back to the states, I'm always in awe of the selection available.
Just curious if anyone else here has suffered cooking culture shock>

__________________

__________________
bebopdobopfood.blogspot.com
Check out my foodblog!
bebopdobop is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-28-2007, 04:53 PM   #2
Master Chef
 
CharlieD's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: USA,Minnesota
Posts: 8,404
You bet. I came here from Soviet Union. I still can't believe how much of anything and everything is available here in the store.
__________________

__________________
You are what you eat.
CharlieD is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-28-2007, 04:58 PM   #3
Chef Extraordinaire
 
GotGarlic's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Southeastern Virginia
Posts: 16,919
I haven't experienced it myself, because I haven't lived in a different country, but we've hosted several exchange students and they are always amazed at the variety of goods we have in grocery stores. Personally, I think it's gone way overboard - too often I have to spend several minutes looking for just the right canned tomatoes (no added veggies, seasonings, etc.), and other things, because there are so many types of the same product. Just last week, I bought a bag of dried cranberries to make cranberry/orange scones and it turned out I had bought cherry-flavored dried cranberries! Come on, if I wanted cherry flavor, wouldn't I buy dried cherries?

Guess that struck a nerve
__________________
The trouble with eating Italian food is that five or six days later you're hungry again. ~ George Miller
GotGarlic is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 11-28-2007, 05:28 PM   #4
Head Chef
 
larry_stewart's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Long Island, New York
Posts: 2,080
I have friends in Brazil, and when we were comparing Our favorite pizza's , hers included one with ketchup, mayonaise and ham on it. Huge culture shock for me. Another included ' Jambu leaves' on it. Not knowing what jambu leaves were, i searched online, ordered a jambu plant. Its nick name is the ' tooth ache plant'. When u eat the leaves, they actually make your mouth feel numb. Never got to trying it on pizza, didnt want to burn or bite my lip ( assuming it would get too numb :p) But I did try the leaves just to get the experience.

Actually, another funny experience was when i was talking to a friend from Sweden. And she was saying how her husband sometimes shops for food at the " American store". Completely confused, I asked , what do they sell at the American store?? so she replied, mac and cheese .... things like that . I guess it made sense, i just never thought of being in another country and eating American things, let alone a specific store for its products. Here, sure I go to the Asian market, Spanish market , Indian market ...so why not an American market over seas... I guess I got to get out more ..
__________________
larry_stewart is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-28-2007, 05:48 PM   #5
Assistant Cook
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Mexico :(
Posts: 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by GotGarlic View Post
Just last week, I bought a bag of dried cranberries to make cranberry/orange scones and it turned out I had bought cherry-flavored dried cranberries! Come on, if I wanted cherry flavor, wouldn't I buy dried cherries?
How funny! I love both dried cranberries and cherries, never heard of cherry flavored cranberries. What is the point?
__________________
bebopdobopfood.blogspot.com
Check out my foodblog!
bebopdobop is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-28-2007, 06:59 PM   #6
Chief Eating Officer
 
GB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: USA,Massachusetts
Posts: 25,509
Larry, are you sure it was the leaves of the jambu and not the fruit itself that your friend had on her pizza?
__________________
You know you can't resist clicking
this link. Your eyes will thank you. VISUAL BLISS
GB is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-28-2007, 07:27 PM   #7
Chef Extraordinaire
 
Katie H's Avatar
Site Moderator
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: I live in the Heartland of the United States - Western Kentucky
Posts: 15,169
Since moving from Washington, D.C. to western Kentucky 13 years ago, Buck and I have been suffering from a bit of cooking culture shock.

In the D.C. area, we had (at our fingertips) just about any ingredient imaginable. Ethnic markets were plentiful and our local grocery stores stocked an incredible variety of foods.

Here, soy sauce is almost a "gourmet" ingredient. As a result, I've had to get VERY creative with my cooking and menu planning. Although, I must say that things are getting better and I'm able to get more adventuresome with my cooking.

On the flip side, the range of cuisines in the area restaurants is fabulous. I would love to be able to buy from their suppliers.
__________________
"As a girl I had zero interest in the stove." - Julia Child
This is real inspiration. Look what Julia became!
Katie H is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-28-2007, 08:19 PM   #8
Head Chef
 
Yakuta's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Chicago
Posts: 1,208
When I came here from India the first weekend my aunt took me to the Dekalb Farmer Market in Atlanta. I am not sure if anyone on this board is from Atlanta and has been to this place. It's super huge. Actually I have now been to a lof of large warehouses, stores etc but DeKalb is an outing in itself. It can take 1/2 a day to go through every section. It was almost overwhelming and a big culture shock for me. I was used to rustic open bazaars in India where fruits, veggies, meat and fish are sold in open.

The next culture shock (reverse one) was when I visited India after almost 17 years. They eat their pizza with ketchup and chili sauce and that is something I am not used to. The cheese is also very different and has a peculiar taste.


Another shock for me was when I was in Europe this summer. Harrod's in London and the food halls. This was my third trip there but I was still confused and overwhelmed at the variety and what to pick and what not to pick especially in their bakery section. Also the prices are incredibly high but people shop there like money is no object.

Last and final shock has been also on my trip to Europe and my visits to McDonalds with my kids. Every place had a different menu. I had a spicy chickpea sandwich in the London McDonalds that was incredibly good and catered for the Indian population there. In Amsterdam the flavors were again unique and the burgers all came with spicy sauces that are no where to be found in US. In Austria the influence in the menu was more Italian with a lot of parmesean sprinkled sandwiches and some type of fried potato fritters that were very good.

Also ketchup and sauces are not free there and I did not know that
__________________
Yakuta is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-28-2007, 08:38 PM   #9
Head Chef
 
larry_stewart's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Long Island, New York
Posts: 2,080
Yes, the Jambu leaves come from an ugly flower, that looks like an eyeball. Also referred to as Spilanthes acmella, toothache plant, eyeball plant

There is another tree called the Jambu tree, also Jambu Ayer, Djamboe Aer, Watery Rose Apple. This produces a fruit that is edible

2 totally different plants

Ive personally never tasted the fruit, but I have tried the leaves, which dont have much of a flavor, but definately make your mouth numb, just like the topical anesthesia applied prior to getting a dental injection. It lasts about 5 - 10 minutes


I know of these things only because my friend from Brazil introduced me to them. I also think the jambu leaves are more of a northern Brazilian thing.
__________________
larry_stewart is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-28-2007, 08:55 PM   #10
Senior Cook
 
stassie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: New Zealand
Posts: 161
I love going food shopping in other countries! Admitedly, I haven't visted that many... but even grocery stores in Australia (just over the ditch) are different from those in New Zealand.

We're going travelling in a year's time, and I've told my husband I want to visit America to go grocery shopping :) Doesn't that sound odd? But I often frequent chat boards which tend to be American-based, and hear about all sorts of food which we can't get here. In fact, an online friend kindly sent me some twinkies once, because I was keen to try them (as a kid, I remember reading a childrens book which mentioned them, and thinking they sounded great. In reality, I'd probably have enjoyed them more ten years ago, but there you are!)

She also sent a Three Musketeers Bar. WHY don't they make those here!?! (I enjoy junk food too much, can you tell?).

Often, it's just curiousity. I mean, squirty cheese?? What do they do to the poor cheese?
__________________

__________________
stassie is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



» Discuss Cooking on Facebook

Our Communities

Our communities encompass many different hobbies and interests, but each one is built on friendly, intelligent membership.

» More about our Communities

Automotive Communities

Our Automotive communities encompass many different makes and models. From U.S. domestics to European Saloons.

» More about our Automotive Communities

Marine Communities

Our Marine websites focus on Cruising and Sailing Vessels, including forums and the largest cruising Wiki project on the web today.

» More about our Marine Communities


Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 03:35 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2016, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.