i woke up the other morning, and my room was bathed in a glorious golden light. just beautiful, it was, until the kid and i thought we might open up the blinds to see what was causing this enchanting illumination. at this point it became just weird and scary. we were quite unsettled to see… well, not much really. our entire vista had been blanketed in a silent orange fog. we were to learn later that it was a tonne (actually, many thousands of tonnes!) of red dust blowing in from the desert. good thing we hadn’t been up an hour or two earlier, when the sky was red: we might have just crawled back into bed and cowered until the apocalypse was over. at least, had we been forced to bunker down, we would’ve had snacks!
appropriate, no? “remember the passed food” indeed! i don’t remember these from my past (perhaps it is taiwan-centric — note the evocative island-of-taiwan-shaped logo), but i guess someone out there must be nostalgic for these little bricks of puffy fried dough bits held together with a barely perceptible glue of brown sugar. after the soft crunch of the first bite, the delicate block yields to become a chewy mass that sticks to your teeth, and tastes mildly of the sum of its ingredients: wheat flour, milk powder, maltose, brown sugar, vegetable oil. simple pleasures, yes, with a slightly oily (and not thoroughly unpleasant) aftertaste.
next! behold the exotic chocolate gift presented to me by ms d on her return from new york city: the bacon bar from vosges haut chocolat, which contains not only smoked bacon, but smoked salt.
when i first showed the package to the kid, and i mused, “i wonder what chocolate deborah gave us,” she paused a moment to decipher the large clue on the box.
“meat chocolate?” she asked.
“yeah! but i wonder what kind of meat it is.”
her smile was wide. “can i have some?” she asked. o, proud moment for a parent!
so we packed it as part of our picnic two weekends ago, and after the cheese and apple sandwiches, and the mandarins, and the chocolate-dipped greek shortbread biscuits sandwiched with sticky red jam, we were suitably impressed by the rich milk chocolate, the comforting tang of salt, and the nublets of bacon packed all the way through. the meat was not always crunchy — alas — but it was a fine contrast to the sweet and creamy. it’s true, what the slightly overwrought, overwrit guff on the back of the package says: you can smell the bacon. even better, you can taste it! the smoky flavour is most enticing, and the randomness of sometimes crunchy bacon edge, and sometimes chewy meat makes it seem you’re eating the real thing. i will be hoarding this chocolate, making it last. truly, a worthy snack to bring you to the end of the world.