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||Nicey, just thought you might like this little tea tidbit fromThe Antarctic Dictionary: A Complete Guide to Antarctic English by Bernadette Hince. Under the entry for tea bag she writes:|
"Remarkably, tea bag is an antarctic word. the technique of immersing a permeable bag containing tea in boiling water was recorded decades earlier on Australian antarctic expeditions than in American or British kitchens. On early antarctic journeys the bags were cloth, possibly the inspiration of Australian explorer Douglas Mawson."
Hince goes on to say "Sometimes these bags were re-used several times, even after being scavenged from old supply dumps. In desperation in Antarctica, used tea leaves were also eaten or smoked."
But from one who has been there, the best thing to ward off the cold in Antarctica is not, I'm afraid, tea but a mug of steaming hot raro. (Raro is a brand of powdered cordial, its name evoking the South Pacific island of Rarotonga.) In minus 27 degrees Celcius, it takes a while to rip open a packet of Raro and add boiling water, but it's worth it from the first sip.
One of the abiding memories of schooll trips and day trips to the seaside or London was the little bag of goodies that mum would throw together for sustenance. This would generally consist of a flask of tea, a packet of crisps, a bar of chocolate and a packet of ICED GEMS. These small biscuits would have to rank among those unsung mainstays of the snack world that have kept busloads of kids happy throughout countless years of geography field trips and tedious days at museums. One feature worth noting is that iced gems had one of the hardest icing swirls ever made, ranking somewhere between carborundum and diamond on the hardness scale. This was allied to a bone dry biscuit base which had you gagging for any form of liquid after eating a packet. If I remember correctly, Iced gems are one of the bsicuits that go rock hard, not soggy, on standing. Maybe we could define an international unit of moistness for biscuits. Although not really a "nice cup of tea and sit down" material in the purist's eyes, surely ICED GEMS deserve an honourable mention on your site. Can anyone remember the colours of the icing?
B J Bunn
|Nicey replies: That's a very sensible appraisal of the Iced Gem. I'm sure there must be some sort of industrial or engineering processes in which the Iced Gem could be utilized such tunnel boring machines, or glass cutting.
|Neil Alistair Scott Hillen
||For your interest, there is a Bhoco Biccy called a ChitChat, which is better than a timtam and a penguin. Most North Islanders should be familiar with them, but I could not find mention of them in the emails section.|
I wish you every luck in getting your hands on this NZ delicacy.
Nice site! Your review of the oreo was an interesting read. Down here in New Zealand the Oreo is only just starting to appear on our shelves, perhaps due to a plot on the part of the mulitnationals: When I was in the states a few years ago I had an orea milkshake and wanted more. Lucky for me the local Dennys had these shakes on the menu. Then macdonalds's introduced oreo mcFlurrys which I took a liking to.
Another Oreo fact: The DC comic's character Martian Manhunter has a irrational addiction to oreo cookies.
I find that oero's themselves are a bit rich so I don't buy them much, but I think the problem is that when I do get them I eat 5 or 6 at once. Do i have an addiction and where can I seek help for it?
Bye for now.
Christchurch, New Zealand
|Nicey replies: Darren, I suggest you try eating some sensible biscuits, some of your local Griffins ones should do nicely, closely followed by some Oreos. This should help clear your mind.|
I have never seen the Mikado biscuits which you feature on your excellent site. I had always taken Mikado biscuits to be the thin biscuit sticks dipped in chocolate, to which you make brief mention. They are sold by LU biscuits in France, but I'm fairly sure that the Danone Group (who own LU) sold stick Mikados under their Jacob's brand in Britain. Surely the company can't have been selling two different products under the same name in the U.K. and Eire?
|Nicey replies: The world of biscuits has more intrigue and mystery than one might suspect.|