Crying over Chilean milk

Remember last week when I was talking about the best cookies in Chile?

Well really, only one thing could have improved upon that cookie experience: a tall glass of ice-cold milk. 

Milk in Chile comes in a box, called a tetrapak.

You’re probably thinking, what’s so hard about that? Just go out and buy some milk!

Except that we have a problem. I hate Chilean milk.

That’s right, I used the h-word.

Chilean milk goes through Ultra-High Temperature (UHT) Pasteurization, which means that it can sit on a shelf un- refrigerated before being opened. In the U.S., the milk we buy at the store is also pasteurized, but under the High Temperature-Short Time (HTST) method, which means that it must be refrigerated, even before being opened.

Damn you UHT!!

I swear, the UHT process makes milk taste different. I can’t quite pinpoint it, but it tastes less like milk and more like…chemical (even though there are no chemicals used, it’s just heated to a higher temperature).

However, I care about my bones and know that I need calcium. So I do the following things to be able to get enough calcium.

  •  Mix it with chocolate milk. You can buy chocolate milk here in the grocery store, but it’s really thick and sweet. So I usually use half regular milk and half chocolate milk.
  •  Drink tea with milk. Every morning I have tea. I only fill up the mug halfway with water and then the rest with milk.
  •  Make banana milk. I have a new blender, so I just put one banana and about a cup of milk into the blender and voila! I don’t hate it anymore.
  •  Milk and cereal. I normally eat oatmeal in the morning with fruit and a splash of milk. If not, I have cinnamon Cuadritos de Avena, which is my favorite cereal here.
  • Yogurt. I eat at least one yogurt every day. My favorite is Yoplait low-fat plain yogurt with fruit. Yum.

I still really miss milk from the U.S.  I grew up on a farm, remember, and drank milk three meals a day. For awhile it was fresh milk from the farm, but then my parents realized the dangers of salmonella, and we started buying pasteurized milk from the store.

If you are living abroad, what is something you really miss from home?

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20 thoughts on “Crying over Chilean milk

  1. Foods I miss:

    Having real coffee abundantly avaliable, special K berries cereal, cranberry juice, and having your pick of ethnic foods to chose from. That’s all I can think of for now!

    • I know, nescafe is the worst. I’m spoiled because we have a drip coffee machine at my office, so I can have coffee whenever I want, but I actually gave up coffee about a month ago (with one horribly misguided lapse yesterday that kept me up ALL NIGHT). I love special K and cranberry juice!! There is a vegetarian restuarant in Providencia called El Huerto that serves cranberry juice! And you can find concentrate at a natural food store in Provi but it’s super expensive, which is dumb since the in the south there is lots of cranberry production.

  2. Foods I miss:

    Having real coffee abundantly avaliable, special K berries cereal, cranberry juice, and having your pick of ethnic foods to chose from. That’s all I can think of for now!

    • I know, nescafe is the worst. I’m spoiled because we have a drip coffee machine at my office, so I can have coffee whenever I want, but I actually gave up coffee about a month ago (with one horribly misguided lapse yesterday that kept me up ALL NIGHT). I love special K and cranberry juice!! There is a vegetarian restuarant in Providencia called El Huerto that serves cranberry juice! And you can find concentrate at a natural food store in Provi but it’s super expensive, which is dumb since the in the south there is lots of cranberry production.

    • I think you can find ranch at Lider. I haven’t looked for awhile but I used to be able to find it there. I haven’t had Sour Patch Kids in so long! Probably since I was in elementary school.

    • I think you can find ranch at Lider. I haven’t looked for awhile but I used to be able to find it there. I haven’t had Sour Patch Kids in so long! Probably since I was in elementary school.

  3. I miss real milk too. Whenever I go back to the states I go back to drinking it at every meal. I hate the milk here so much that I can’t even stand having it over cereal. I pretty much use it in cooking and that’s it. I also miss Miracle Whip. I have never been a mayo person and love potato salad and pasta salad in the summer made with Miracle Whip. I usually bring a few small jars of it back here when I go to the states, but it never lasts long 😦
    also, they do have rnach at Lider, its the Great Value brand I buy that, its not as good as HIdden Valley, but it still tastes better than no ranch 😛

  4. I miss real milk too. Whenever I go back to the states I go back to drinking it at every meal. I hate the milk here so much that I can’t even stand having it over cereal. I pretty much use it in cooking and that’s it. I also miss Miracle Whip. I have never been a mayo person and love potato salad and pasta salad in the summer made with Miracle Whip. I usually bring a few small jars of it back here when I go to the states, but it never lasts long 😦
    also, they do have rnach at Lider, its the Great Value brand I buy that, its not as good as HIdden Valley, but it still tastes better than no ranch 😛

  5. I don’t drink milk in either country (plain, I’ll have it in coffee or whatever) but I have heard from plenty of gringa’s that it’s horrible here so I’ll just take your word on it.

  6. I don’t drink milk in either country (plain, I’ll have it in coffee or whatever) but I have heard from plenty of gringa’s that it’s horrible here so I’ll just take your word on it.

  7. I really really miss fresh bread. The “fresh” bread in Spain is still hard and not soft and warm and doughy like the bread in Chile when it steams up the bag because it’s so fresh out of the oven. Spain also uses the blechhh box milk!

  8. I really really miss fresh bread. The “fresh” bread in Spain is still hard and not soft and warm and doughy like the bread in Chile when it steams up the bag because it’s so fresh out of the oven. Spain also uses the blechhh box milk!

  9. I miss just about every item listed in this post I wrote, but my top cravings are cheddar cheese, good seafood (even though I live on the coast—it’s mind-boggling how focused Argentines are on beef!) and ethnic foods (Chinese, Thai, Mexican).

  10. I miss just about every item listed in this post I wrote, but my top cravings are cheddar cheese, good seafood (even though I live on the coast—it’s mind-boggling how focused Argentines are on beef!) and ethnic foods (Chinese, Thai, Mexican).

  11. It does make it taste different. I recently read an article by a dietician who claimed it also affected the nutrient content. In regular milk, there should be some vitamin A and D naturally. In UHT milk, there isn’t. I read it also destroys in B vitamins. So, essentially, it is different milk.

    In Asian countries, they rarely drink milk, but have less osteoporosis than in the US. Why? They eat more vegetables with calcium. Greens. Broccoli. Seaweeds. Then all of your legumes like soy, and garbanzos even have calcium.

  12. It does make it taste different. I recently read an article by a dietician who claimed it also affected the nutrient content. In regular milk, there should be some vitamin A and D naturally. In UHT milk, there isn’t. I read it also destroys in B vitamins. So, essentially, it is different milk.

    In Asian countries, they rarely drink milk, but have less osteoporosis than in the US. Why? They eat more vegetables with calcium. Greens. Broccoli. Seaweeds. Then all of your legumes like soy, and garbanzos even have calcium.

  13. I recently went on a business trip to Chile. I really enjoyed it, but my only complaint about Chile is the milk. I love milk. Milk in Canada is pretty fresh.

    In Chile, I ordered milk at a restaurant, and I nearly spit it out. It did have a chemical taste, and the texture and colour were all wrong. Milk is supposed to be white! And even whole milk usually has a tiny bit of transparency to it; this stuff was opaque like paint.

    Then I went to a grocery store in search of milk, and I couldn’t find any milk that wasn’t sitting at room temperature in a box. Yuck.

    I have since learned that the lower temperature pasteurization we use in Canada is illegal in Chile; all milk sold in Chile must go through UHT pasteurization. I don’t think I could live somewhere without access to fresh milk!

  14. I recently went on a business trip to Chile. I really enjoyed it, but my only complaint about Chile is the milk. I love milk. Milk in Canada is pretty fresh.

    In Chile, I ordered milk at a restaurant, and I nearly spit it out. It did have a chemical taste, and the texture and colour were all wrong. Milk is supposed to be white! And even whole milk usually has a tiny bit of transparency to it; this stuff was opaque like paint.

    Then I went to a grocery store in search of milk, and I couldn’t find any milk that wasn’t sitting at room temperature in a box. Yuck.

    I have since learned that the lower temperature pasteurization we use in Canada is illegal in Chile; all milk sold in Chile must go through UHT pasteurization. I don’t think I could live somewhere without access to fresh milk!

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