Pantry? You fancy rich people with your pantries!

Day 7: Expat Blog Challenge: "Since moving abroad my pantry looks different because..."

I have never actually done this. P.S. They call them prawns.
Pantry? You fancy rich people and your pantries! Back in the ol' glory days of high school my brother, his friend and I were at my Gramma's chillin' (mind you - we weren't chillaxin' - that hadn't been invented yet.) My brother's friend gets thirsty and heads to the kitchen to get a drink. He loudly proclaims that, "there are not any glasses!" We holler back that there is - he insists there is not. We yell back that they - are - right - there - in - the - cupboard. To which, he replies, "You fancy rich people and your fancy cupboards with doors!" That sure cracked us up! I still find it pretty hilarious to this day. We were pretty far from actually being rich, but gosh darn it, we did have doors on our cupboards (something he was unaccustomed to) so I guess it is all about perspective, eh?

What was the point of that story again? Oh right, I never really had a "pantry" growing up. I'm not sure why I'm putting "pantry" in quotes - I suppose in my mind it's still one of "those fancy rich things" we just didn't have. Intellectually, I know that is just silly & clearly not the point of this prompt... so please... stick with me as I continue.

How have my eating habits changed over the years? First, I'll need to take you back to my childhood home in a small town in rural Michigan. So, what's for dinner? Well... like any other self respecting working class midwestern family we ate; meat, potatoes, veggie, with bread & butter (or yummy biscuits hot out of the oven.) We ate this ALL the time! Meat, potatoes, veggie, repeat! Meat, potatoes, veggie, repeat! We did have a few regular exceptions to the meat, potato, veggie rule. These included tacos (before soft shell were cool), chili, spaghetti, potato & ham soup, and mom's homemade pizza (okay - she made it from a Chef Boyardee box - but, she added to it and boy was it yummy!)

We never ate rice. My dad seemed to develop some type of aversion to the stuff after he "won" "the lottery" at 18 and got that all expenses paid trip abroad. My parents never forced us to eat yucky things like liver or brussels sprouts, and I was always grateful for that.

So, what has changed? Well, I suppose a lot, but things have been changing for a while... long before I moved abroad. At 18, I moved away from home to go to college. There I was exposed to exotic things like hummus & fajitas. My roommate laughed at me the first time I saw a pomegranate and said, "that's a funny looking apple." I tried strange cuisines like Chinese & Indian. I studied abroad in Scotland and lived with Europeans who taught me how to cook pasta sauce from scratch & exposed me to fancy cheeses.

I moved to Chicago and ate at Thai, Peruvian, & Ethiopian restaurants. I became a big city girl with big city tastes. I bravely ate things my parents wouldn't have wanted to try. I liked trying new things - tasting new cultures.

I moved to Sydney & it was much of the same, "the world is my oyster." A diverse metropolitan area I've dined out at Lebanese, Spanish, Turkish, Polish, Czech, Malaysian, Japanese, & even Uyghur restaurants.

I've loved it - I really have - but, ya know what? I'd still be happy eating potatoes everyday. There is just something about the comfort of what you grew up eating that just makes you happy. Plus, potatoes are awesome & you can cook them so many different ways! The Tall Aussie with a Slavic Name that Sounds full of Dread would disagree about the wonders of eating potatoes each and everyday. He's always pressing me to look past the ol' meat, potato, veggie mentality at the grocery store to buy new & exciting things to cook. So somewhere between the, "look babe, just because we watch Masterchef doesn't mean we are gourmet chefs!" & "okay, let's try to make something new" my life has struck a balance of new and old... and I, for one, can certainly live with that.


Labels:

Sydney Smiles: Pantry? You fancy rich people with your pantries!

Friday, February 7, 2014

Pantry? You fancy rich people with your pantries!

Day 7: Expat Blog Challenge: "Since moving abroad my pantry looks different because..."

I have never actually done this. P.S. They call them prawns.
Pantry? You fancy rich people and your pantries! Back in the ol' glory days of high school my brother, his friend and I were at my Gramma's chillin' (mind you - we weren't chillaxin' - that hadn't been invented yet.) My brother's friend gets thirsty and heads to the kitchen to get a drink. He loudly proclaims that, "there are not any glasses!" We holler back that there is - he insists there is not. We yell back that they - are - right - there - in - the - cupboard. To which, he replies, "You fancy rich people and your fancy cupboards with doors!" That sure cracked us up! I still find it pretty hilarious to this day. We were pretty far from actually being rich, but gosh darn it, we did have doors on our cupboards (something he was unaccustomed to) so I guess it is all about perspective, eh?

What was the point of that story again? Oh right, I never really had a "pantry" growing up. I'm not sure why I'm putting "pantry" in quotes - I suppose in my mind it's still one of "those fancy rich things" we just didn't have. Intellectually, I know that is just silly & clearly not the point of this prompt... so please... stick with me as I continue.

How have my eating habits changed over the years? First, I'll need to take you back to my childhood home in a small town in rural Michigan. So, what's for dinner? Well... like any other self respecting working class midwestern family we ate; meat, potatoes, veggie, with bread & butter (or yummy biscuits hot out of the oven.) We ate this ALL the time! Meat, potatoes, veggie, repeat! Meat, potatoes, veggie, repeat! We did have a few regular exceptions to the meat, potato, veggie rule. These included tacos (before soft shell were cool), chili, spaghetti, potato & ham soup, and mom's homemade pizza (okay - she made it from a Chef Boyardee box - but, she added to it and boy was it yummy!)

We never ate rice. My dad seemed to develop some type of aversion to the stuff after he "won" "the lottery" at 18 and got that all expenses paid trip abroad. My parents never forced us to eat yucky things like liver or brussels sprouts, and I was always grateful for that.

So, what has changed? Well, I suppose a lot, but things have been changing for a while... long before I moved abroad. At 18, I moved away from home to go to college. There I was exposed to exotic things like hummus & fajitas. My roommate laughed at me the first time I saw a pomegranate and said, "that's a funny looking apple." I tried strange cuisines like Chinese & Indian. I studied abroad in Scotland and lived with Europeans who taught me how to cook pasta sauce from scratch & exposed me to fancy cheeses.

I moved to Chicago and ate at Thai, Peruvian, & Ethiopian restaurants. I became a big city girl with big city tastes. I bravely ate things my parents wouldn't have wanted to try. I liked trying new things - tasting new cultures.

I moved to Sydney & it was much of the same, "the world is my oyster." A diverse metropolitan area I've dined out at Lebanese, Spanish, Turkish, Polish, Czech, Malaysian, Japanese, & even Uyghur restaurants.

I've loved it - I really have - but, ya know what? I'd still be happy eating potatoes everyday. There is just something about the comfort of what you grew up eating that just makes you happy. Plus, potatoes are awesome & you can cook them so many different ways! The Tall Aussie with a Slavic Name that Sounds full of Dread would disagree about the wonders of eating potatoes each and everyday. He's always pressing me to look past the ol' meat, potato, veggie mentality at the grocery store to buy new & exciting things to cook. So somewhere between the, "look babe, just because we watch Masterchef doesn't mean we are gourmet chefs!" & "okay, let's try to make something new" my life has struck a balance of new and old... and I, for one, can certainly live with that.


Labels:

11 Comments:

At February 7, 2014 at 1:54 PM , OpenID Christie said...

I'm so with you on potatoes! I will always love them even if my sushi-loving, Thai food-loving housemates to not appreciate them.

 
At February 7, 2014 at 4:53 PM , Blogger Samantha said...

Lol. Yes! How can anyone not love potatoes?

 
At February 7, 2014 at 5:55 PM , OpenID joshandjackie said...

I LOVE potatoes. When I grew up, my mother made the mistake of showing me how to make a "baked" potato in the microwave in 5 minutes. After that, every single day she came home, she'd find me at the kitchen table with a baked potato, huge slab of butter to dip the potato in and a book in my hand. I'm with you, love the boring comfort foods of childhood and love trying new things out.

 
At February 7, 2014 at 7:01 PM , Blogger Samantha said...

Haha. That is sooo great! I love the fact you made yourself a potato for a snack!!! Sounds even better with the book in your hand!

 
At February 7, 2014 at 7:35 PM , Blogger C. In Oz said...

That story about the cupboards is the best. So funny.
I'm kind of with you on how we grew up, in terms of food. Not so much with the potatoes every day (though, pretty often!), but yes to the meat, veg, and bread. Mix in tacos and casserole. My mom's from Minnesota, you know we did casseroles! It was funny when my mom was here - she was totally game to try new things, but I think it was all a bit much for her. She got so tired of Asian food. One day, we were trying to pick between a Chinese and a Thai place, and she said, "oh who cares, they taste the same!" I think I felt that way once, too, but definitely not since living in Sydney!

 
At February 7, 2014 at 8:03 PM , Blogger Cosette Paneque said...

I grew up on little other than Cuban food. I was 19 and in college when I first tried Kraft Macaroni & Cheese. It turned out I wasn't missing much with that one, but I went to try on a lot of other kinds of foods too, things that my parents have never tried and probably never will. Nevertheless, Cuban food is my soul food. My partner is a lamb and potatoes kind of guy.

 
At February 7, 2014 at 8:26 PM , Blogger Samantha said...

Poor mom, she gave it here all! Gotta hand it to her for trying. Lol. If only the Chinese or Thai made casseroles it might have been an easier transition for her. :-)

 
At February 7, 2014 at 8:32 PM , Blogger Samantha said...

I would really like to give Cuban food a try myself. That is pretty funny about the mac & cheese - maybe, it's something you need to eat as a kid to be able to appreciate. Lol.

 
At February 7, 2014 at 11:32 PM , Blogger Yvette Niesel said...

OMG, so many comments to write!
1. I used to make that Chef Boyardee pizza, too!
2. I love potatoes, but grew up down south so love rice more...
3. I grew up on Kraft Mac & Cheese... love it, but love to doctor it up! (Velveeta is best.)

 
At February 7, 2014 at 11:54 PM , Blogger Samantha said...

Lol. That Chef Boyardee makes one heck of a pizza doesn't he? Lol. I love me some mac & cheese too & yes, Velveeta is the best! How do you doctor yours up? We used to add hot dogs or ground beef to ours.

 
At February 8, 2014 at 8:58 AM , Blogger Yvette Niesel said...

Well, first of all, I hate al dente. I cook the crap out of the noodles. I always add extra butter, extra milk and extra cheese (whatever's in the fridge). I add Cajun seasoning, of course. I put it back on the stove and get the extra cheese to melt. Then I add cottage cheese. If I have time, I like to add either a bit of crumbled up bacon or ham or tuna or whatever I have on hand. Then put in a baking dish and add bread crumbs or something on top and bake for about 20 minutes. Definitely leave it a bit loose if you are going to do the baking part because it tends to lose some liquid in that process. There are no rules. Go crazy with it!!!

 

Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home