A Conversation for Items to Take with You when Visiting Friends Abroad

Food

Post 1

Sol

If you fancy a visit to Russia, bring me extra mature chedder cheese, chesire cheese or lancashire cheese. In fact any British cheeses will do, thanks. French cheses are two apenny, likewise dutch, german and scandinavian-sounding ones, but Brithish cheeses, nary a one. Also, I wouldn't mind a large jar of branston pickle and some peanut butter (I prefer the crunchy variety), and a friend of mine would like to order some marmite. Not vegimite, marmite. And the American in the corner is angling for Kraft cheese dinners, whatever the hell they are.

Oh, and Blue Tac. Lots and lots of blue tac.


Food

Post 2

Ashley


When Living abroad I frequently requested the following from the UK;

HP Brown Sauce - this is a spicy fruit sauce that is just perfect with chips and is *the* essential ingredient to a bacon butty.

Golden Syrup - treacle isn't the same and there are time when one is feeling truly self-indulgent (sickness etc) and this abrosia of the English gods is the perfect comforter on cake, in tea or just spooned from the jar.

Marmite - I'm not sure if this is a malt or yeats extract but it is extremely salty and tasty. This is a great on to let your new friends abroad try - thus ensuring the negative image of British cuisine.

Custard Craem biscuits - these are truly divine biscuits and are a must for elevenses.


Food

Post 3

a girl called Ben

PG Tips tea bags.


Food

Post 4

Sol

Oh, yes. Russian people are unanimous in that they miss decent black bread when they go abroad. It is stronger than British wholemeal, yet not as stron/dense as german black bread. And the stuff that they sell in sainsburies which calls itself Russian black bread is nothing like (though I think it is made with rye flour), and it drives them crazy.


Food

Post 5

Ashley



We used to have a Russian bakery in my neck of the woods and there used to be huge queues for the bread.....

It lasts for ages too


Food

Post 6

Sho - gainfully employed again

Hi,

Ah, Russian bread - I miss it.

So, here in Germany what we request from home (UK) are the following:

1. Wensleydale cheese
2. Wensleydale cheese
3. Polo mints
4. Wensleydale cheese
5. Chunky Kit Kats (although they're available here now)
6. Marmite
7. Branston pickle (big chunks please)
8. Thornton's toffee (and a chocolate mouse or 6 if it's near Christmas)
9. Lem Sip (max strength)
10. Any other over the counter cold remedy
11. Wensleydale cheese
12. That week's Sunday Times (all supplements including Executive and Property)
13. Crunchie bars
14. Golden syrup

That is the standard list. There are seasonal variations and additions:
Cadbury's creme eggs
Mincemeat (for the pies)
Christmas crackers (cheap ones please, with crap jokes)

My mum always comes over with a massive suitcase full, and goes back with the German stuff from the list my dad gave her:

1. Gin (cheap German gin, can't beat it)
2. Hanuta (for my brother)
3. Duplo (for my dad) - that's chocolate, not Lego
4. Bread (Bauernbrot)
5. Maggi sauce
6. Maggi herb/spice mixes (numbers 4, 7, 8, 9 and 10)
7. Hollandaise sauce to make up from the packet (yeuch, but he likes it)
8. Jaeger sauce to make up from the packet (don't ask, it's disgusting)

if it's Christmas:
Stollen
Spekulatius biscuits
Dominosteine

If it's Easter:
Eiskonfekt (some peculiar sort of "cold tasting" chocolate)

Sho
smiley - kiss


Food

Post 7

a girl called Ben

Yup, it isnt just the things you miss about your home country. It is the things you miss about the places you've been.

Can only get in England: PG Tips T Bags
Can only get in Germany: Elephant Bohnen in Tomato Sauce
Can only get in Sweden: Twinings orange and cinnamon flavoured tea

And I was only in Germany 4 months, and I have only been in Sweden for two, so its early days yet.


Food

Post 8

Sho - gainfully employed again

The worst thing is, and this has become a joke over the years, no matter where you are, when you get your PG Tips teabags (or Yorkshire Tea, which is what we have) the tea never tastes the same. Never ever.


Food

Post 9

tiptop

Yup, Yorkshire Tea. Even if you manage to find a moderately drinkable English Breakfast Tea abroad, it never ever comes with milk. Grrrr.
(By the way - did you know that Yorkshire Tea is blended differently for different regions of the country? It's to ensure a consistent taste despite the differences in the water)
And
Wensleydale/Swaledale/Coverdale Cheese
And
Cadburies chocolate (any shape/size)
And
Prawn Cocktail crisps


When I was young we lived in Germany, and after returning there were a handful of things we really missed and had to get people to smuggle back to us. They were:

Maggi sauce
Curry sauce in big squeezy bottles
Zigeuner sauce
Frikadellen (the sausage shaped ones, not the meatball shaped ones)

Mmmm, just thinking of them makes my mouth water.


Food

Post 10

tiptop

Yup, Yorkshire Tea. Even if you manage to find a moderately drinkable English Breakfast Tea abroad, it never ever comes with milk. Grrrr.
(By the way - did you know that Yorkshire Tea is blended differently for different regions of the country? It's to ensure a consistent taste despite the differences in the water)
And
Wensleydale/Swaledale/Coverdale Cheese
And
Cadburies chocolate (any shape/size)
And
Prawn Cocktail crisps


When I was young we lived in Germany, and after returning there were a handful of things we really missed and had to get people to smuggle back to us. They were:

Maggi sauce
Curry sauce in big squeezy bottles
Zigeuner sauce
Frikadellen (the sausage shaped ones, not the meatball shaped ones)

Mmmm, just thinking of them makes my mouth water.


Food

Post 11

Sol

Cheese, again! I went to some evening for vso a while back, and there were soem previous participants there who had been in countries like africa, china, indonesia and so on. Someone asked them what they had missed. All of them, almost with one voice said CHEESE.


Food

Post 12

Frizzychick

I've been asked for:
Marmite
Crumpets
Branston pickle


Food

Post 13

You can call me TC

Well, as an expat of long long standing, I can't improve on Branston Pickle, PG tips and Marmite suggestions.... or can I?

Digestive biscuits, Christmas puddings, Dundee cakes, Shortbread (although this is easy to make)
Different kinds of brown sugar, flavoured crisps (see the Smiths Crisps entry) and other things like Dettol and the simple, unperfumed talcs and body lotions (E45) that you can buy in enormous packs for reasonable prices in Boots . It's not that they're better, it's just that they're indespensible and wholly unavailable in Germany.

Little shops that sell British goods exist in most larger towns in Germany, but these charge (understandably) exhorbitant prices. Our nearest M&S is in Strasbourg, in Alsace.

If you want to take presents for cheap, just record loads of lunchtime comedy off Radio 4. There is nothing like that in Germany, and if there was, it would be German. These programmes are not webcast, the Archers are. But anything like that is the best cure (or cause) for homesickness I know. And videos of the silly quizzes on TV - there's nothing like that here either. Documentaries of interest to the recipient will also be welcome. Thank God Germany and UK have the same TV and Video systems.

If I'm in England I spend loads in Boots, places like Past Times and also bookshops. And then there's birthday cards - I could take a crate back every time I go. Just to give you an idea what you can bring me when you come.

On a recent trip home, I discovered that gimmicky things are usually available much earlier in GB, too. For example you could get those plasma lamps everywhere, but they have only just come on the market in Germany ... some six months later, and at astronomical prices.

The other way round.....

Americans who are posted in Germany get hooked on the German Gummibärchen. They are like jelly babies but have no artificial colouring or sweetener. They are cheap and available in all sizes of packet. They usually ask travellers from Germany to USA to take them with them.

And I've heard the one about Zigeunersauce as well. My sister was asked to fetch some for a friend when she was over once.

Older people ask for herbal tea bags. But they are usually available in other countries now, too.

Also typical for Germany is the black bread (see my entry "German Bread") - which is available in supermarkets, different flavoured coffees in sachets (just add water!!) and, if you are visiting a German abroad and are coming from Germany, magazines and books are certainly welcome. Ask the bookseller to advise on the latest crazes in authors, or look at the Spiegel best sellers list.

For long lists on this subject, you have permission to consult my "Alter Ego"- where I entered loads of these things in my Journal:
(I won't quote it here, this posting is long enough as it is) http://www.h2g2.com/U122832


Food

Post 14

Sho - gainfully employed again

Hi,
Glad you put the link in because I couldn't remember where it was, TC.
And:
Vegetarian Suet (most things Veggie are sorely lacking here)
Mincemeat/mincepies
and
Everything else TC mentioned!
Sho
smiley - kiss


Food

Post 15

ju

British cheese is the best! I speak as an adopted Brit and not a native.


Food

Post 16

Galaxy Babe - eclectic editor

When I visited my {then} boyfriend in Kuwait, I was asked to take several items conserned with home-brewing.
I had to make sure they were dismantled and packed in different parts, with a story for each {you wouldn't believe to story I had made up for the bung...}; in case my suitcase was searched at customs.
It wasn't.
I did have a nervous moment though, in the queue, {which contained all males except for me} when another partition opened, and he beckoned ~me~ over, and no-one else moved!
The officer couldn't have been nicer, he checked my passport, my visa, asked me if I was on business or holiday, ~then~ he asked me if I had any alcohol {Kuwait is a "dry" country} to which I repolied "No" and I was given an escort through!smiley - biggrin
The items I'd taken were: yeast; a pack of bungs; a pack of corks; a bathplug; a bottle ot tomato sauce and a bottle of brown sauce.


Food

Post 17

You can call me TC

Ribena and smoked haddoch (the yellow fishy stuff)


Food

Post 18

You can call me TC

haddock


Food

Post 19

Sho - gainfully employed again

This has got me thinking and I'm in full flow now:
when my friends visit from Australia they have to bring me Minties and Jaffas.
From England, I further require: Ribena, twiglets, cheesy Wotsits, Q magazine, fingers of Fudge
From Holland: peanut butter, Heinz Beans, bagels, Quorn, squishy bread, Dove chocolate bars
From the USA: Teddy Grahams
From Korea: Kimchee and those yummy walnut cake things
probably my list is endless........
Sho
smiley - kiss


Food

Post 20

Babel17

When I go out to Australia to see my dad and sister, I have to bring him Marks & Spencer Wine Gums, and she wants HP Sauce, Cadburys chocolate, Prawn Cocktail crisps (the stronger the better, normally Walkers) and above all else, Marks & Spencer Undies! You just don't get the same quality from places like Target or K-Mart.

What I missed most was Twiglets (did get some once, just on their sell by, but still worth it!) What I had to bring back for my partner was Cherry-Ripe and Violet Crumble bars. I would have prefered to get a big supply of Coopers Sparkling Ale, but what's a guy to do? smiley - smiley
Also she demanded I go to a specific shop and buy her a leather toadstool (made my a local craftperson, she now has 6 herself, plus has given a further 4 away) I also took back Samboy Salt & Vinegar crisps, Smiths Chicken crisps and would have loved to take back some Farmers Union Chocolate Milk, but reckoned it would either explode or get too warm. Bleugh! smiley - smiley


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