Folks have asked me if, people aside, there is anything I will miss when I leave Saudi Arabia. On the whole, no, if you mean is there anything I can’t live without; but, there are a couple of things that I would love to find in the US.
- Kudus – In my weight loss journey, I’ve given up most fast food. However, one place that has remained in my repertoire of quick eats is a place called Kudus. Kudus serves pretty fair Philly-style (not actual Philly cheesesteak sandwiches) sandwiches of both the beef and cheese variety, as well as a very light meat and salad plate of both the beef and cheese variety. In fact, most everything they have is fairly light and fairly healthy. You can get stuff that isn’t; but, why do so if you can get something tasty and fairly healthy? Plus, they have a very inexpensive, quasi-Western style breakfast, which is very good. So, yes, I’ll miss Kudus.
- Hummus – Some of you may be saying, “But, Greg, you can get hummus in the US of A.” Technically, you’d be correct. In a taste quality challenge sense, you’d be incorrect. Although I am sure I can find some really good, freshly made hummus somewhere in the US, I have never been so lucky. Most of it gets made from powdered mixes, combined with olive oil (hopefully), to yield this blah paste meant to be reminiscent of actual hummus. The hummus over here is to die for…thick and fresh…with this near smoky flavor that I am unsure how to emulate. I plan to learn to make fresh hummus once I am home. I can only hope to do it as well.
- Mama Nouras – This very famous place (grown into a small chain) is a Mediterranean grill run by Turkish entrepreneurs. Although it is the original, numerous Mama <insert name of choice> grills have popped up all around Saudi Arabia, hoping to find the same success and praise. I’ll stick with Mama Nouras. Grilled kebaabs, wings, riyash (ribs – applicable to any rib, but specifically to lamb ribs), outstanding falafel sandwiches, excellent side dishes (hummus, baba ganoush, taboulis), and shawarma (served only after 4pm)…the place is cheap and so damned tasty. I guarantee there will NOT be a Mama Nouras in the US…especially not in Cottage Grove.
That’s three specific things. I might think of a few more. But, those are the biggies.