Food, Republic of Georgia

Food Update

As suspected, winter is turning out not to be the best time food-wise.

When I arrived in September, the garden out back was still producing loads of tomatoes, onions, and fresh greens. In October and November, grapes, apples, and quince were plentiful. December saw the advent of mandarin season.

February, however, is desolate as far as fruits and vegetables. Mandarins are still available, but they are shrunken and squishy. Some fruits and veggies can be bought in the market, but seemingly at a premium as they are never served at home.

In the absence of fruits and vegetables, carbohydrates and starches now account for 99.9% of all food consumed in my house. Oh, make that 90%. Let us not forget the fat.

Fat. Yes, fat. The pig which used to wander the side of the house was slaughtered sometime in January. While I missed out on all the good parts it might have offered, his presence remains in the form of slabs and slabs of frozen fat. Fat, which is making its way into almost every dish served, sometimes as the central ingredient.

I have had eggs fried up with chucks of fat. Soups with fat. There was a stir-fry that was tomato-based with chopped onions, greens, and what I thought were large chunks of potato. Oops, no, fat again. Biting into a big chunk of fat was a low point of that day. And there is always raw fat available. You can pop a nice chunk into your mouth anytime you want. Mmmm. Just what I need.

So it’s bread for breakfast with the possibility of jam or butter. Tea. Lunch is generally some soupy, tomato-y, fatty affair. Dinner is bread or leftovers from lunch. I usually get a cup of black coffee and cookie at school. That’s all folks. Oh, I have some chocolate in my closet for emergencies. And emergencies are seeming more frequent of late.

But the good news is I am much for resigned to it all now. Not sure anything they serve could surprise me at this point. And I am now generally allowed to serve myself. A tremendous victory. So at least I can control my serving of the daily delights.

I cannot say that I look forward to meals a great deal. Unless it happens to be lobio. But on the whole I think it’s a healthy change. Eat to live, yes?

A trip to Tbilisi is planned for next weekend though and top on my list of things to do is cook some familiar food at our hostel. I’m thinking scrambled onion cheese eggs, pasta with meat sauce, and maybe a delectable sandwich or two. Can’t wait.

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