Tuesday, April 10, 2018

I did a snack exchange thing...

Recently I took part in a snack exchange through a site I participate in regularly. Basically, you respond to someone's post asking for an exchange partner, agree on a dollar amount of food that you are willing to trade (excluding postage) and then exchange boxes of local food. Sure, it might be cheaper to buy the exchange items off Amazon or whatever, but it wouldn't be nearly as much fun or mystery.

My exchange partner was from Texas, told me that her birthday was coming up and she wanted foreign snacks to enjoy. She had no preferences or dietary restrictions, but liked gummy things, chocolates and hadn't tried anything from Australia so was happy for me to choose a selection (she wasn't enthusiastic about Vegemite or I'd have popped a small pack in too). We agreed on a budget of $15USD for snacks, which worked out to be just under $19AUD. I think I got a pretty good representation of Australian snacks!

I always like seeing both side of an exchange, so here's what I sent:

  • French Fries
  • Chicos
  • Allens Party Mix
  • Twisties - both cheese and chicken variety
  • TimTam - gelato messina choc mint and cherry coconut varieties
  • BBQ shapes
  • Pods - snickers variety (because Americans are all about the horrible Tide Pod challenge at the moment and I thought it would be funny to send actual edible ones)
  • Chicken salt - surprisingly, this is a uniquely Australian seasoning and even more surprisingly is ninja vegan! Who knew
  • Not pictured - half a container of a Favourites selection that I used to fill the gaps - Cadbury mini cherry ripes, moro, boost, dairy milk, crunchie, turkish delight, flake and dream bar

I wrote a note explaining each item, explained the TimTam Slam and why she should try it and told her I'd love to know what was her favourite item once she got through them all (Pods are the winner at the moment but she hasn't tried everything yet).

Here's what I got back in my box. I hadn't provided any dietary restrictions because I figured if I wouldn't eat something, Mr Fork or the smalls would. The only thing I said was that I would prefer not to get any American chocolate (I think it's not very nice) and when asked I said I was happy to have spicy snacks! Every single thing she sent was totally new to me and if I'm honest, I don't even know what half of it is!

Lots of it is spicy and some of it I think are Spanish or Mexican sweets so the ingredients lists aren't in English at all.
   
The bright lollipops on the right are watermelon flavoured and then coated with spicy coating (I think they're amazingly delicious). The colourful chain of lollies underneath are spicy tamarind coated things which are delightfully spicy and sour at the same time.

Interestingly, the twizzlers (root beer and cherry flavoured) are both ninja vegan and SO GOOD! I haven't had a gummy sweet in a long time and these were good (I wasn't sure initially but I quite like the root beer flavour). The Laffy Taffy (watermelon and guava flavour) is also a ninja vegan product and I found it a chewy, fluffy sort of starburst type thing. It was good.

My smalls liked the milky (real milk!) lollypops, and there were also some soft caramels which Mr Fork tells me were amazing (but very milky... he thinks maybe goat milk). Mr Fork also claimed the spicy Fiesta mix and warhead worms as soon as he saw them. 

It was a super fun thing to do - I had fun picking snacks and then the anticipation of trying something surprising and new-to-me was half of the excitement, and then it was like opening a box to get a glimpse of someone else's favourite snack culture.

I'd definitely do it again in the future, and Mr Fork is already putting in requests for exchange locations to keep an eye out for. I certainly have some places in mind I'd like to try snacks from... I've even seen some posts pop up where people are looking for vegan or healthy snack exchange partners too which seems fun.

So I'm interested to know, if you could choose a location to exchange snacks with, where would you pick? And what would you send in an exchange that was representative of your location or your favourites?

3 comments:

  1. I think if I was in a foreign country I would love your snack pack - though I am surprised about the chicken seasoning being Australian. I too would find the snacks you were sent to be totally foreign - which just shows that we blog with others from other countries and think we have some idea of their food but obviously not. Sounds like a fun thing to do.

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    Replies
    1. I was surprised about chicken salt too! Looking through some of the other exchanges I've seen, I've learnt so much about regional and international snacks. Some of the things look really, really yummy. It was very fun!

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  2. Looks like lots of fun! Thanks for sharing both sets of pictures. Your Australian one is so gorgeously Australian - takes me right back to Australia :-)

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