Brittle Sweet Memories

Your trip is coming to an end but it’s not over until the gifts list gets completed. For travels to Myanmar, suitcases filled with local handicrafts and perhaps some gemstones make some nice memories. However, one of the more popular souvenir items for everyone should be peanut crisps and peanut butter brittle.

Because peanuts are grown widely in many parts of this country, especially around Bagan and Mandalay, it’s the ideal present. Peanuts are found in many local dishes, either sprinkled on top of noodles, pounded into salads, served in a peanut soup or toasted and simmered with palm sugar to make peanut candy crunch and peanut brittle.

With the many types and flavours to choose at the local markets, the more simple crispy confections come in several flavours. Choices include sesame and cashew nut or butter peanut candy crunch, which are slightly sweeter versions. You’ll also find Myanmar chocolate on the shelves to satisfy every sweet tooth, packed with fruits and nut combinations. A block of organic sweet jaggery, a sugar made from the sap of toddy palm trees, is a local dessert often eaten right after a heavy meal to help with digestion which offers a rich taste and makes an ideal gift.

Traditional jiggery used to be serve in chunks but now the dessert has become a delicacy and updated as bite size and in a stylish package. These sweets and desserts are now part of the Burmese identity. Before leaving Myanmar, pop into any supermarket and look for a shelf with ‘The Pride of Myanmar’ sign, for the many delicacies to bring home.

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