I have discovered that one of the biggest issues when you move country is finding the ingredients that you are accustomed to using! Some things you can’t get, others are called something different. Others are just well hidden :)
Cooking family favourites becomes tricky. Even simple things like baked beans on toast are not as easy as you might imagine.
The same brand doesn’t necessarily mean the same product…
I have tried every brand of American baked beans, including Heinz, and had the kids turn their noses up at everyone of them (and to be honest, I don’t blame them!). In the end I admitted defeat and I now buy imported UK Heinz Beans for three times the price of the local brand!
Cheese has been an issue too, the 8yo in particular just does not like most American cheese… Cheddar is not cheddar as we know it! And, to be fair, the boys were raised on extra mature; no mild cheddar in our house :)
Sausages! It took me a long time to discover that Bratwurst were the closest I was going to get to a pork sausage; the chicken and turkey sausages that fill the shelves here got a big thumbs down from the boys!
It has been hard work; especially in the early days with children missing friends and family, and craving the familiar; but we have now found alternatives to just about everything, introduced some new foods, and discovered some new family favourites.
Taco Tuesdays are becoming a tradition. Burritos are our favoured take away option. Hot dogs appear on the menu more often… But, so do omelettes as all three kids have decided that eggs are the best thing ever.
Lazy weekend breakfasts of pancakes, fruit and syrup (with added bacon for the meat eaters and scrambled eggs for the veggies), are now the norm.
Extra Sharp American cheddar will now get past the 8yo taste test :)
A fellow expat Scot has found a butcher who will make batches of sausages to a given recipe, so our freezer is now full of ‘proper’ sausages.
I sometimes think the kids will turn into watermelons during the summer.
It may have taken awhile, but finding new family favourites has been an interesting foodie journey, one that we are still on.
I love that we now eat a wider variety of foods (old favourites combined with new creating a far more varied menu). I love that we eat more Mexican food (a favourite of mine) and that the kids eat so much fruit.
I love that breakfast is the meal we are most likely to go to a restaurant for!
But, I still look forward to our trips to the UK so that we can get our fix of chip shop chips :)