Grocery Shopping

Grocery Store

Spice bar

Hope you like cornflakes! That's the most popular cereal here. Luckily we've been able to get the cereal we like from elsewhere.

The Rice aisle at Geantu

The fish... just hanging out - not behind glass or anything.

Mmmm, looks good huh?
Grocery shopping is a different experience here. First of all, there are like 100 different grocery stores. The city is broken down into blocks and most of the blocks have their own grocery store. In addition to that there are little supplemental quickie marts scattered around, we have one down the street that's great for little things like bread and milk. Then there are the main grocery stores, which for some reason here seem to be in the malls. Its strange. The one we like the best so far is Geantu. Its in one of the newer malls, and as long as you go in the morning or daytime the parking isn't bad. Its big and well lit, it kind of feels like a target/walmart. We've been able to find most everything we're looking for. Plus they have a great fresh section.
In the fresh section there is of course the produce, meat and bread like our normal grocery , but with a wider variety. There are so many exotic fruits/vegetables in the produce section. I wouldn't even know what to do with half of it. I saw 5 different types of pumpkins the last time I was there, pumpkins aren't exotic I know, but its just an example of the different stuff you'd find here versus in the states.
The meat section has a lot more than ours usually does, but the added choices don't help me much because they're things like brain and tongue, etc. I stick to what I know when it comes to meat and stay away from the sections labeled "beef parts" and "chicken parts". They also sell China beef here, so you have to make sure not to get that. China beef I guess is banned in the US. I'm not sure why, but I'll take the advice and not ask questions.
Other sections include a date bar, a dessert bar, an olive bar, a dried friuit/nut bar, an entire aisle dedicated to enormous bags of rice from all over the world (our favorite so far is the Indian rice), a cheese bar, and the spice bar (I'm sure I'm forgetting something...). The spice bar is cool. The spices here are really fresh (and potent) and they serve you the fresh spices out of big burlap bags.
There is a ton of fish here too. I'm a little bit of a wuss when it comes to cooking fish. I like to eat it at restaurants when its cooked correctly. I personally don't like handling it and don't really know how to cook it. Being here and seeing huge piles of fish in this section staring at you hasn't helped my wimp-tendancies when it comes to preparing seafood. Maybe I'll get brave one day. Oh - and they sell dried fish here. It looks really appetizing, huh?
Jason is hooked on hummus. He loves it. We ate at Nando's Restaurant last night and they served hummus as an appetizer, so it was an instant hit. I think my next experiment might be to try to make my own - does anyone have a recipe they'd recommend?

1 comment:

  1. Whitney - thank you for this detailed explanation of yet another dimension of living in a foreign land - so much we take for granted - it is such an interesting set of experiences you are acquiring over there! I do have a hummus recipe that I use from my horn of the moon cookbook - I will be happy to lend it to you altho there is a girl at work that seems to make hers a bit more like the middle-easterners do - we also have an indian girl at work who may have a better recipe - mine seems to be a pretty "american version" of hummus - I will see what I can dig up for you - I know tahnini is always the hardest part of the ingredients for me to find - I think I mentioned that to you when I wanted to go to that spice shop here in columbus (that we never made it to of course!) - I was hoping to find it there - you should have better luck there it sounds like! and if you end up w/ a good recipe, I will be happy to have it too! :) happy shopping! (and goodness no - I love all types of seafood and fish, but I don't think I could bring myself to cook something I have to behead first - while it's little eyes were staring at me!) :)