America – How SWEET The Sound

I’ve done it now. Blame the hormones being homesick around the holidays, but I just bought a whole bunch of American goodies from an online shop. I’m in the wrong business, I know.

I finally gave in to my American consumer needs. Libby’s Pumpkin Pie, Brach’s Candy Corn, Cinnamon Toast Crunch and good ol’ Kraft Velveeta Shells and Cheese were some of my purchases. Why try to find a replacement when you can have the real thing? For the record, the cereal and Kraft Shells are for Roo. Since he never reads this thing, my secret splurges are safe.

I’m testing the shop out because it could seriously be a lifesaver come Christmas baking. Norak and I have a tradition to uphold, people! I’ve already warned Norak that one of her carry-ons will include baking and American grocery essentials.


Thanksgiving Turkey & Party Hats

The Native Americans gave us corn. The English gave us party hats and balloons.

We celebrated Thanksgiving on Saturday with our close mates. Today, I am thankful for water and the fact that our terrace is still standing. Andrew and I cooked the turkey, green bean casserole, sweet potato casserole and we asked everyone to bring their favorite dish. Due to our European living, the oven was too tiny for a proper turkey so we cooked two breasts, and we had to cram all the pilgrims into our living room.

In short, it was absolutely amazing. I can’t compare it to Thanksgiving back home, but it was like a glorified dinner party with good friends.

My favourite comments:
– This turkey is the best I’ve ever had. Better than Christmas dinner.
– What is this pecan thing?
– I’ve never had anything like this.

Whilst the turkey was a hit, I would like to say that my sweet potato casserole was a close second. Thanks Norak for the recipe, it’s being passed around in England now. We’ve gone international, girlfriend. I also made carrot (cup)cakes; it’s what a girl has to do when she can’t find proper pumpkin pie or Karo syrup. It was the first go for making the dish my mom has always made and Andrew took his first pass at gravy. Delish. We’re good cooks, what can I say.

The locals brought Yorkshire Pudding and delicious cheeses for snacks and dessert. Yes, there is such thing as a dessert cheese that will blow your mind.

The best gift from our mates, party hats and balloons. They weren’t exactly sure what to wear or what goes on during the American’s traditional Thanksgiving. We wore the party hats all night and the balloons were entertaining to say the least.

Growing up with Thanksgiving you know the ins and outs of the holiday food and family traditions. When our friends asked us questions about ‘what to wear, what to bring, what time do people eat, how much food is there, is it bigger than Christmas,’ it puts things into perspective. I sincerely enjoyed watching the locals take part in our American holiday. It’s fantastic to share your culture and ultimately create new celebrations amongst new people.

And it’s officially Christmas. Happy holidays, y’all!

Banana Bread: Winning

I earned major points this week in the housewife department. See, I like to keep Andy’s expectations low. This way, when I do something like bake homemade from scratch Banana Bread (his fave), I am rewarded with loads of praise.

I needed something to perk me up in this cooler weather and nothing warms up the house than the smell of fresh baking naner bread. I had to search high and low and in all the wrong places for my baking ingredients, but bread was perfect as the pan is tiny enough to fit in our oven, which I think we borrowed from the Keebler Elves. Betty Crocker wasn’t available to help in with the recipe, hence the “from scratch.” Call me lazy but I know when to let another woman do the baking for me.

It turned out amazing, and the little banana slices I put on top were nomnom.

I still think the lady that sprinkled her face with flour in the old Rice Krispy Treat commercial is a genius.

Be sure to drink your Ovaltine. Ovaltine? A crummy commercial?

I love the Nestlé NESQUIK chocolate bunny as much as the next person, but when I need a healthy alternative I really like Ovaltine. Call me an old woman, but Ovaltine is much kinder on my figure. Fewer cals, just as good of taste as chocolate milk. Ovaltine is actually the perfect post workout recovery drink, and since we are trying to abstain from debauchery during the week it makes a lovely evening treat.

When we went to the store a few weeks back I asked Andrew to grab some Ovaltine. He spent like nine hours in the cocoa aisle like he had never seen it before and comes back with this:

1. Unless it’s McMoon or a product for infants I want nothing to do with a moon on my product. 2. Horlicks, um did they run out of words and invent one that would surely turn people away? It makes the name “Ovaltine” sound like marketing gold. 3. Where the frack was the Ovaltine?

Horlicks light Malt Chocolate is said to be, “the traditional malty hot drink to help you sleep.” Watching a grown man heat up milk on the stove, pour it into a thick powdery substance is an awful experience. And to top it off, it tastes like the milk you get after a big bowl of sugary cereal. Moo moo juice fail.

Last night, I watched this Horlick preparation for the last time. I was so ticked that this island has no Ovaltine, I even Tweeted about it. I told Andrew about my Twitter conversation with the people at Ovaltine, assuring me it’s here. To which he replied, “Yea, it was next to the Horlicks.” Pause. Recover. You fathead. I almost sent him back out right then.

The following events occured between the hours of 23:00 and 24:00 on Thursday, Oct 27 —
Me: Horlicks the horrible.
Andrew: Could they not think of a more worse name than Horlicks?
Me: Horriblelicks. But it obviously wasn’t a bad enough name to stop you from buying it.
Andrew: There was no malt. I knew I was screwed when the package said, “Step 1: heat milk.”
Me: Horliffick.
Andrew: It looked good. They said malty.
Me: It looked like it is for babies. And it’s not like it wasn’t RIGHT next to the Ovaltine.

I was crying I was laughing so hard.

So, what did you do last night? I anticipate a marketing letter from Horlicks, so to save the trouble: It wasn’t that bad. I am just an Ovaltine, easy to make, tastes great, kind of gal.

Brands With Visa Issues

I’ll take, “Things That Couldn’t Clear Customs” for $500, Alex.

Turns out Chris Brown isn’t the only thing not making it to the United Kingdom. Let my inner fat kid share with you things that you will not find on the shelves of our local groceries or streets in our neighbourhood.

In short, I would destroy a Chick-fil-a #1 combo right now.