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Condiment Mysteries???


Queenie O.

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I would say that as an American, that yes in my opinion Americans are very particular and partial to their own brands of food and have particular opinions about how certain foods should taste. Not saying that that is a good or bad thing, but just a fact:) That being said, I especially get frustrated myself that when shopping  I can't find the American made variety of a condiment, and have to search for a comparable one to my liking. Granted there are many local brands of some items that are great and comparable, but condiments are not a great category.

 Sadly Filipino peanut butter even cannot compare IMHO to American brands, but there are two condiments that fail miserably: mayonnaise and pickles or any variety. In my quest for decent varieties of pickles, if I can't get the American brands, I'm comfortable with most French and German brands, because they know a lot about such things.

When you think about pickles especially, the ingredients are pretty basic--cucumbers, vinegar salt sugar etc. When buying a Philippine brand of pickles, I can't tell you how many times a simple jar of pickles has tasted just so wrong:) On the other hand, I recently bought a jar of Icy Mountain Sweet Dill Chips thinking that I was on to something good, only to find that they were distributed in California by way of Viet Nam, and were not tasty:)  On the other hand, I got excited and bought an Australian brand called Leggo's of mustard pickles that I thought would taste like American, but although decent, did not really. Ketchup is a another condiment that I could go on about too..

How do you feel about condiment buying here? Have you gotten burned on some too? Do you have any favorites to share with us? This is just really a frivolous thread of course,  but just part of that thrill (or not) of finding that coveted comfort food, imported that we might all be searching for:)

Queenie

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I like dill cucumbers on hamburgers, along with beetroot of course = Dave Hounddriver really likes it too!!!!!haha.

I also like chille or hot sauce on just about everything.

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Springfield products are generally pretty good and are made in the US and sent here (all except cornflakes .... sorry private joke) :cornflakes: their mayo is to me the best I have found here .... Heinz Ketchup is Heinz Ketchup and not sweet like the Filipino kind ..... I did find Vlasic pickles both the whole ones in gallon jars and the sliced ones as well as relish .... also found Jack Daniels mustard .... about 10 different flavors but all this was years ago in Ayala Cebu .... lot better food choices in Cebu than here .... Springfield brand was found in Ayala and Robinsons and they have lots of different items from peanut butter to horse radish .... have not found a bad product by them yet but like everything else here it is hit and miss .... one month the selves are filled with them and next 2 months wala .... even the Tesco products we were getting a while back in SM have depleted considerably .... no pickled beets in months now .... and the shredded wheat cereal I loved longer than that ....(Kriss Aquino needs to get out of the politics and start pushing Tesco products again .... would be a whole lot more productive) (JMHO of course) .....

We were making our own bread (and still do occasionally) but we found no sugar wheat bread made by Bob's Cafe to be better than we could make and easier too ....

I find here that it all depends on who asks for what from the manager as they may try it but if it sits on the shelves for very long they won't reorder and if sells out in a week they won't reorder either .... :hystery: .... so it is a challenge finding food you like ..... finally after almost 9 years I found hotdogs I am comfortable with .... Virginia's New Yorker hot dogs .... either I have lived here to long or they are equal to the hot dogs in the US .... :SugarwareZ-004::hystery:

If I can think of anything else I'll let you know .... :cheersty:

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The pickles are just horrible - cucumber in sour sugar sauce. Only decent ketchup is Heinz (the one in the plastic squeeze bottle). Filipino ketchup is surprise surprise spiked with alot of sugar. 

Im missing proper mustard. By proper mustard i mean hot mustard, not that sweet american crap (luckly i still have a few tubes left).

I will leave the vinegar trenched beets to Mogo, i buy mine fresh and boil them. Yummy beetroot and no vinegar :D.

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I hear you Queenie, SM hypermart usually has pretty good mustard (being a mustard addict myself). But for authentic "American" condiments the best place IMHO is still S&R membership stores (there is one in Cebu). Real Vlassic dill pickles, ketchup, mustard, spices stuff like that.

Another place we have found (and the only place we consistently find authentic Miracle Whip) is the Duty Free shops. (again there is one in Cebu). The disadvantage of duty free store you need a person with a return ticket to enter. When we have visitors we take a day out of their "vacation" and make them go to the Duty Free with us. :hystery: 

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Love Mustard. I like the English powdered mustard "Colmans" brand I think it is? In the yellow (what else) tin. Also the stone ground type.

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If only it were possible to find malt vinegar........................

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It is easy to find American peanut butter here in Iloilo, Peter Pan, Jif, and Skippy. Crazy expensive... but easy.  Lea & Perrins Worcestershire sauce is also everywhere (is that American? It counts). The only yellow mustard I find on a regular basis is McCormick and Morehouse - luckily both are the bland American yellow mustard that I like. We keep banana ketchup and Heinz at the house. I like both, depending on what I am eating.

Mayo is easy for me... I hate all things mayo ha ha.  So, no worries.

I have found BBQ sauce at SM a couple times, but not consistently (usually Kraft, not great, but ok).  I do miss good BBQ, and have never tried to make my own sauce...   

Pickles I give up!  There is one burger joint here that has Vlassic dill pickles but they charge too much. A small sliver is p10, which makes one pickle p60.  I have never found good pickles in a store.

We have a German expat here who makes good sausages and sells them to the Iloilo Supermart.  They are about double the price of Virginia, but really good. I buy them occasionally as a treat.

When I first got here I had a heck of a time finding good food, especially condiments. After a while I found where to shop for most of it. I look at grocery shopping as a treasure hunt! :tiphat:

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Tying back to the hobby-thread here, why is it not that we could come up with some locally made (read self-made) equivalent products. Hit mustard and proper ketchup is easily made, pickled cucumbers would be too. Hmmm... I am picking up on ideas here, I will never get time to explore the surroundings!

Since I am severly damaged when it comes to how things "should" taste by eating all kind of various alternatives, this would need a tasting get-together too *grin*

I had some swedish meatballs and mash with lingonberries and brown sauce at an IKEA not long ago, I missed it so much since I left Sweden. Result? Tastes awful... :o

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19 minutes ago, MikeSwede said:

Tying back to the hobby-thread here, why is it not that we could come up with some locally made (read self-made) equivalent products. Hit mustard and proper ketchup is easily made, pickled cucumbers would be too. Hmmm... I am picking up on ideas here, I will never get time to explore the surroundings!

Since I am severly damaged when it comes to how things "should" taste by eating all kind of various alternatives, this would need a tasting get-together too *grin*

I had some swedish meatballs and mash with lingonberries and brown sauce at an IKEA not long ago, I missed it so much since I left Sweden. Result? Tastes awful... :o

Pickled cucumbers would be easy to make if you find small cucumbers for sale in the market (i have only found big ones). Id kill for some cucumbers pickled in brine (salt water) now... Not a big fan of cucumbers pickled in vinegar, but id still eat them - would be much better than the sour sugar sauce of Filipino "pickles".

All the Scandinavians and Estonians in Perth used to go to IKEA for their beatballs. I went a few times and the taste was just "meh". Not good nor bad. It's probably because the meat balls are frozen and the potato mash is that dry mix with water chemical tasting mash. Better then nothing, but nothing special - not like grandmom used to make.

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