Nuts for nuts? Absolutely! Almonds, pistachios, cashews, walnuts, hazelnuts – especially with chocolate – and even macadamia nuts, I love tree nuts – all varieties. When impatient to chomp on some of nature’s best shelled treasures, one place comes to mind – Tavazo.
Serving the best in dried fruits, nuts, preserves and other Persian delights, Tavazo is my preferred gateway to glorious snacks and confections. Richmond Hill or Thornhill, make your way to either location and behold: countless rows of self-serve decorative stands abundantly filled with candy-coated, salt-crusted as well as ‘au natural’ snack options for our health-conscious peckish friends.
Uptown or midtown, select the closest destination and you’ll not be disappointed. In addition to mixed nuts, familiar appearances are spotted as seen with dehydrated blueberries, cranberries, currants, strawberries, plums, pineapples, and apricots. All delicious – agreeably so! Unbeknownst to some, however, remain staples to Persian cuisine – meet the mulberry and barberry. Eaten alone or in combination with other fine specimens, mulberries are golden – literally. Reminiscent of raisins, in texture, they carry an appearance close to an oval-shaped version of a yellow raspberry; distinctly sweet, chewy and with an overall multifaceted surface. Providers of goji berries, too, Tavazo is no stranger to the Persian cook – in you – if you looking to make ‘zereshk polo’ (a barberry and saffron-infused rice dish).
Mulberries, barberries, almond-pistachio-walnut-cashew-hazelnut-peanut-goji-strawberry-blueberry-and raisin blended, mixed and bagged – by yours truly – my checklist is just about complete. Hands on a little bit of everything, I am not quite ready to make a great escape – to a happy trail-mix of eating – until I revisit the confectionary aisle. Individually wrapped, I am intrigued by the rose petal-laced and pistachio embedded jelly treats similar to Turkish delight, but only it’s Persian; so, it goes without saying, handfuls must be added to my basket.
‘Healing waters’ situated on the end-cap, I find tamarind paste on the opposite side that leads to other equally palatable treats. To be seen and explored, a trip down to memory lane – few steps, really – is easily spotted around the corner. Reliving youth – if only for a moment – I find traces of past memories, shelved via assorted piles of neatly arranged Persian fruit leathers.
Before I even heard of Fruit Roll-ups, fruit leather – as far as I knew – came in one colour and taste: a deep plum purple sheet of concentrated sour flavour. Intensely irresistible, this lip-numbing treat is too good to pass on. If Gushers and the like are not for you, fruit leather is made available – here – in all shapes and ‘sweetened’ varieties: cherry, pomegranate, grape and the notorious plum. For nostalgia’s sake, I take a few of those too. “That’s so dry!?” Indicatively so! Laughing on the way to finalize a total sum – of more than I can carry – I wouldn’t want my purchased loot any other way but dehydrated, of course.
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