When you are an expat who lives overseas, one of the things that you miss the most is food. Your favorite restaurants aren’t the same, even when they have overseas locations (hence my mild obsession with trying McDonald’s everywhere?). Your favorite snacks are manufactured else where and even M & M’s taste different. And your favorite convenience foods? Well, they can be difficult to find in general and when you do find them, very expensive.
For example, back in the US one of the staples in my freezer was MorningStar patties. They were easy, quick and delicious. Oh and cheap. Like buy them on sale and freeze them in bulk. My freezer was never without Chick Patties or Spicy Black Bean Burgers. So when I moved to the Middle East and one day they showed up in freezer section it was as if a little grocery god had appeared to grant my wishes! I bought EVERY. SINGLE. BOX. It was heavenly. I tried, in vain, for months trying to mimic the recipe in case they never showed up again. And then I pretty much gave up when the next month rolled around and they restocked the freezer section (yes, people I said the next MONTH!)
But then we moved to SE Asia. And sometimes at specialty groceries you can find these delicious meat alternatives (they make such easy lunches and quick dinners for late nights after parent teacher conferences and such!) but at a hefty price. We’re talking $12 to $15 a box folks. Not case. Box. Like $4 to $5 a patty. OUCH! I knew I had to get back to the kitchen and work out a recipe to replace these.