I am afraid I have an addiction. An addiction to cereal.
I suppose it’s better to be addicted to cereal than it is Big Macs, cocaine, or porn.
But it still surprises me just how much I love cereal.
And so, I was startled to test out the cereal in Australia. In general, it’s not great. Of course, sugary cereals like Fruit Loops are imported, but brands like Kashi, Puffins, Chex, and even normal (i.e. General Mills) Cheerios are absent from shelves. I’m not surprised that these brands don’t exist in Australia, but I am surprised that there aren’t good equivalents. I miss my Peanut Butter Puffins and Kashi Heart to Heart, I’m not going to lie.
Rice Bubbles are, as you guessed, Rice Krispies. I haven’t tried these, but I’m going to guess they taste the same as at home. That being said, Australia sells Uncle Toby’s (not General Mills) Cheerios, which are very different from in the US.
You know those chips that were designed to be “dippable”? Well, these are the cocoa puff miniature version of those chips. Small, thin, chocolatey. It’s the kind of cereal that you don’t want to know the ingredients, particularly when your milk turns brown.
I don’t usually care for Raisin Bran, unless it’s the only cereal in the cabinet to satisfy my cereal addiction. Nonetheless, it was interesting to see this on the shelves instead of Raisin Bran. Sultanas are actually white grapes that originated in the Middle East (perhaps naming them after sultans?). Although it seems that there is a heavy sultana presence in Australia, they do sell “Raisin Toast” (which is not nearly as good as the When Pigs Fly raisin bread that I get in the states).
This was the first cereal I tasted in Australia, served at my orientation breakfast. The cereal looks like brown Lego pieces, and tastes nothing like the Nutri-Grain granola bars in the United States. Supremely crunchy yet light, sugary, nutty, and all-around strange.
Finally, Weet-Bix Bites. These are liked chopped up crunchy granola bars, put into a cereal box. This has tended to be my go-to cereal, though if the little fruit bits were not in the cereal, it would be incredibly tasteless.
As my time in Australia comes to an end, it is dawning on me that in general, carbohydrates in Australia are not very good. There is no whole-wheat pasta (or at least none that I have come across, I’ve only seen a soy, brown pasta). The bread, even from bakeries, is very different from fresh bread at home and evidently the cereal is a change. Growing up in the United States, then studying in Australia, has taught me to be grateful about a laundry list of things, from my parents, to my home, to my cats, and most surprisingly, to American cereal.