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Tuesday, October 7, 2014


As those who know me well can attest, my life revolves around food.  When I am not actually eating something, I am often planning my next meal.  I like to have quality ingredients to cook with.  If I spend money at a restaurant, I want the food to be both very tasty and very different from what I cook at home.  I loathe skipping meals, and I usually eat several snacks throughout the day.

Planning snacks was a struggle when we first arrived, and to a certain extent, it still is.  One thing I liked to have for a snack in the US was raw veggies with bean dip.  I do not have a food processor here, so the bean dip is out for now.  I also enjoyed bananas with peanut butter.  Until very recently, I could not locate sugar-free peanut butter, so that snack was also out.  For a while last year, I was also making homemade granola bars, but any number of ingredients and equipment are missing here.

As a result, I tend to default to fruit (fresh or dried) and nuts as snacks.  Once I discovered that we could get good quality nuts in the bazaar, I was pretty happy.  But I still wanted more variety.  Happily, I've come upon two local cheese to fill the void.  The first one is a drained yogurt cheese known as kurt.  Unlike Middle Eastern labneh, it is not spreadable; rather, it is formed into fairly hard pellets that can keep for a long time.

Bag of kurt!
I don't actually know the name of the other cheese I've started eating, but it's some sort of smoked string cheese with a chewy texture.  Our neighbors shared some with us recently, and I've been obsessed with it ever since.  It's fairly dry, so I have a feeling that it would keep for a long time, as well.

Smoked cheese, pictured in all its glory with kitchen table clutter

The area where we live is somewhat of a food desert, but these cheese discoveries are at least helping me to continue my usual snacking schedule.  With luck, I'll discover more interesting foods, and have many more snack posts to come.

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