Traveling Without Actually Going Anywhere: Universal Yums from Turkey

In my last box from Universal Yums, a Christmas gift from my husband, I received snacks from Turkey! The country of Turkey straddles two continents: Europe and Asia. I had visited Turkey with my family when we were on a cruise around the Mediterranean Sea. We had stopped at Izmir and Istanbul to see a palace, a mosque, and the ancient city of Ephesus. It was quite a beautiful country, and I recommend visiting it if you can!

From the informative pamphlet, I learned that the first olive oil factory was established in Izmir in 600 BC! Also, it is said that Noah’s Ark ended its journey in Turkey! Interestingly, I learned that Turkey is the world’s largest consumer of tea per capita — they beat out the United Kingdom!

While listening to music from Turkey, my husband and I dived into the snack box. First up was baharat spice cracker chips. David said they smell spicy but don’t taste spicy. I thought they tasted weird and said they tasted like a baked spicy cheese cracker! Next up was vanilla tahini halva, which is a crumbly ground-sesame confection. Tahini is a traditional Turkish paste of ground sesame seeds. We did not like this one at all! It had a weird consistency, and I breathed in a crumb which made me cough. We ended up throwing out the rest of it. There was also a string inside, which did not sit well with us.

Next, we ate the cocoa cream mosaic cookies, which we both, thankfully, loved! The cookies featured Turkish tahini, hazelnut, and cocoa. David described them as crisp cookies with a Nutella-like center. Thankfully, there wasn’t much tahini in these cookies! We then tried the salted roasted chickpeas. David liked them, but I didn’t, as I thought they were salty and chalky.

A coconut and coffee snowball cake was our next treat, and I absolutely loved it! I typically don’t like much coconut flavor, but this had a little coconut flavor with a lot of coffee flavor. I also liked the creamy center. David typically doesn’t like coffee or coffee flavoring, but he said this was “coffee I didn’t hate!” We then ate Turkish sour watermelon gummies. David typically hates gummies; he said this was his least hated gummy that he’s ever had, but he still hated it! This gummy coated in sugar was barely sour in my opinion.

Afterwards, we tried mastic toffees. Mastic is described in the booklet as a gummy sap with a pine-y flavor. They were absolutely awful! It was incredibly gross! We both spit it out after awhile of chewing. It definitely tasted like a pine tree! Yuck!! Lastly, we ate melon and lime chews. David said it was too much chewing and had a strong flavor. I agreed that it was chewy, but I thought it was just a bit sour.

Overall, we were not too impressed with this box, which was unfortunate since this was the last box in the subscription that David purchased for my Christmas gift. David’s favorite snack this month was the cocoa cream mosaic cookies, while I loved the coconut and coffee snowball cake. The worst yums were a tie between the vanilla tahini halva and the mastic toffees.

I think this product is such a neat and fun way to travel around the world without leaving your dining table! You get to learn more about different countries, while eating tasty and sometimes gross treats! I would definitely recommend you check out Universal Yums during your next gift giving opportunity! We sure enjoyed it! I will let you know if we order anymore! I am tempted because next month’s box is going to be from South Korea, and I am intrigued!

*I was not compensated for this review.

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