Picture of the Week – My trip to the Lebanese Roastery

Can you guess what these colorful balls of sweetness are?

When I first saw them I thought they were deformed gum balls.  If you look closely though you can see that they are actually candied chickpeas!

My mother in law gave us a bag of these pretty little chick peas a few weeks ago and ever since that day, I have wanted to go to the store to get some more.  They are so delicious.  I am not sure about their nutritional value – since the amount of sugar probably cancels out the fact that you are eating chickpeas – but they are so good.

So this week I took a trip to the Lebanese roastery, where the chickpeas are roasted and candied.  For those of you who don’t know, my husband is Lebanese.  Being of Egyptian background myself, I did not think I had too much to learn about Lebanese culture. But these candied chickpeas, or kdaameh, are a case in point to show that I was wrong.  Lebanese culture is so different from Egyptian culture in so many ways – language, food, people, history, traditions, pretty much everything. I am learning and discovering more about this culture on a daily basis.  I love being able to pick and choose what I like from both of our cultures, and leaving out the parts that I don’t like as much.  In any case, candied chickpeas  definitely made the cut.

So, back to my story: I took my first trip over to the Lebanese roastery and loved what I saw.  Bins of colourfoul chickpeas, almonds, coffee beans and seeds – all freshly roasted….mmmm.  Lots of fancy chocolate and teas all imported from Lebanon.  The store itself was not very fancy, and is located in a small plaza on a side street.  But I kid you not, while I was in there, I felt like I was in Lebanon.  Arabic music playing, only Lebanese people doing their shopping,  no English to be heard in the store – it was just wonderful and I loved being in there.  I plan on making regular trips to the roastery from now on.  Well, that is, until we move.  But hopefully I can find another one in Halifax.

And that is the story of the how the “deformed gum balls” came into my world.

What are some aspects of other cultures that you have invited into you life?

Posted on June 8, 2011, in Culture, Food for eating, Inspiration, Photography, Picture of the week and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. Great post! Two examples from this Lebanese guy raised in Ottawa and married to an Egyptian:

    1) the straightforwardness of my wife’s Egyptian culture, as compared to the indirect and flowery patterns of Lebanese dialogue and custom
    2) the, now lifelong, inability to correctly say “boulevard” with a proper Parisien accent as a result of my Outaouais upbringing. This is a matter of endless amusement for my wife.

  2. My dad was raised in Egypt and when he came to live in Lebanon (his dad was lebanese) my mom used to refer to his “Egyptian mannerism”; he still missed the Egypt of his youth, more than fifty years later. I would not know, I have never been. I do enjoy the Egyptians great sense of humor and talent for conversation. I think the Lebanese beat them in food though! I am so envious that you are able to get these in your area; here they are imported. I love them!

  3. Joumana – thanks for your comments. I love your blog – I am a big fan 🙂 I have yet to try the recent Sfeeha recipe you posted!

    Your comments are so interesting. My parents talk about the “Egypt of their youth” too. Its a very special place. I love my culture and am so proud of it – but I admit – you guys do beat us in food. My motto is – if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em!

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