So, of course, one of the first things I did in Dubai was check out the local Spinneys and Waitrose. With so many ex-pats here there is a mix of products. All the favourite items from the UK and US, a smattering of Aussie products (Vegemite, Tim Tams) and then ingredients from India, Pakistan, Russia and the Philippines.
To be honest, a lot of people had told me it wasn't very good before I left, but I have to say I'm pretty impressed. Especially as almost everything has to be imported as not much grows in the desert. You can get Australian meat and produce often cheaper than at home and the quality is pretty good.
When we left Australia, I was prepared to give up pork products. "How good could they be if they're forbidden?" I thought. Well, all pork products are kept in a separate part of the store, so Muslims don't have to go near it. Inside you can find anything from hot dogs in a jar and Pop Tarts (I think they have gelatin in them?) to thick slices of streaky bacon, terrines and gorgeous smoked ham. They will be no pork deprivation whilst we live here, that's for sure. Plus having to go into a secret part of the store makes it that much more tantalising.
I was also very happy to find Lurpak and Vegemite which is our staple breakfast. The Lurpak is kept in the freezer and you can get a heap of varieties that we don't get at home. It also has an Arabic label.
So, it's not all that different to home, but then sometimes you stumble on something and you realise that you're not in the aisles of your local Coles, like fresh camel milk. I definitely have never seen that before. I'm not sure how that would go down on Weetbix.
|Mmm camel goodness.|
|Note the sign: "For non-Muslims"|
|How do you say Lurpak in Arabic?|