The Cereal Quest: Day 37 – Mlekotaki!

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Today was the day that The Cereal Quest turned international. Today is the day I started my day with a bowl of the excitably named Mlekotaki. My Polish isn’t what it should be, which is surprising as I recently went to Boscombe. However I managed to work out some basic information from looking at the pack, I worked out they were star shaped and saw something that resembled a cinnamon stick on there so I figured they would be slightly cinnamonny stars. I was correct, I should be a detective, in Boscombe.

They were a strange flavour, the cinnamon wasn’t a big kick, more of a lingering aftertaste, but the texture was great, they were good against milk and had a good crunch, not crazy hard like a Dime Bar but hard enough. The milk they left behind was tempting enough to pick up the bowl and pour down into my mouth, and unfortunately onto one of my Christmas cardigans, but this was human error and not the fault of Mlekotaki.

All in all it is a positive start for this Polish entry in to the quest. Hopefully they will be a refreshing change to the norm for a good few days yet.

Thanks again to my generous friend Darren for buying them and sending them to me!

Until tomorrow!

The Cereal Quest: Day 38 – Getting Scared

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“If I was good at manual labour, I could consider becoming Polish” I thought to myself as I sat eating another bowl of Mlekotaki this morning.  I am warming to them more and more (the cereal, not the Poles, although I have nothing against them either).  The cereal is only the 2nd novelty shaped cereal so far in the quest, and in the competition for novelty shaped cereal they wipe the floor with Lion Cereal, who shape their cereal based on the part of the body that is suffering most whilst eating them, the teeth.

I worked out another flavour in Mlekotaki this morning and I think it is marzipan, there is a sort of almondy sweetness to them, I would love to confirm this to help inform nut allergy sufferers but I have literally no idea what anything says on the Polish packaging.  They are really nice, they don’t need sugar to enhance the flavour, they are naturally beautiful.  I worry that they put me on edge a bit, I have no idea what the ingredients are and maybe that makes me nervous.  At lunch today I went to ‘The Range’ to by some light bulbs as candlelit baths were the only option available in the last few days.  As I walked down towards the light bulb section I had to walk past a sunglasses stand, it was obstructing my view a bit going round the corner of the aisle, I suddenly saw this person coming towards me and not moving then he got really close, I jumped right out of the way, unfortunately in to the direction of an innocent middle aged woman and tutted at this idiotic man, only to realise the person walking towards me was indeed my very own reflection in one of those tilt angled sunglasses mirrors, the woman I jumped towards side stepped me (and probably tutted) I then continued quickly at quite a pace towards the light bulbs, grabbed what I needed and got out the shop (after paying of course), I hope this cereal is not the cause of my unnecessary panic.  I will be keeping tabs in the days to come.

The Cereal Quest: Day 39 – It’s Not Just Me Thats Losing It

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This morning I woke up with three things on my mind, the first was eating another bowl of Mlekotaki, the second was finding out more about Mlekotaki and the third was wondering if Mlekotaki was going to make me on edge again today.

So after getting my daughter up and giving her her porridge I went to the kitchen to pour myself another bowl of the Polish Mlekotaki cereal.  I don’t know any Polish but I really wanted to try and work out more about this cereal.  I stared at the pack and looked at the name “Mlekotaki”, and then it hit me that ‘Mleko’ must mean ‘milk’.  I found it strange for a cereal to be called something to do with milk so I then sat about thinking what ‘taki’ meant.  I thought and thought for at least 15 seconds (time is precious in the morning), maybe it meant ‘take’ or ‘tacky’ but neither made sense.  I decided to research during my break when I got to work.  I sat down and ate another bewilderingly tasty bowl, full of crunch and with those mystery cinnamonny, marzipan flavours, today the aftertaste lasted longer, for those wanting detail I would suggest 18 minutes, which is when I brushed my teeth.

At about 10:00am at work I was upstairs and sipping a cup of tea when I noticed my hand was shaking, then I realised my legs were shaking (not Bruce Grobbelar during a penalty shoot out but close), I had to put my tea down.  At this point I took an early break and went downstairs to find out what on earth was in this cereal that is making me jump when I see my reflection (see yesterday) and shake when drinking tea.  I looked up ‘Lubella’ the Polish company that make this cereal, they had an English translation on their site so research was simple. ‘Mlekotaki’ translates to ‘Milky Team’, I was half right, which now makes sense as there are super hero style characters on the front with a giant ‘M’ where Superman would have an ‘S’.  I then saw this for my Milky Team Cinnamon Stars:

flours (57,5%): wheat, corn, sugar, palm fat, glucose, cinnamon (1,5%), honey, salt, emulsifiers: soya lecithin, mono-and diglycerides of fatty acids, colours: beta-carotene, ammonia caramel, aromas, anti-oxidant: ascorbyl palmitate, tocopherol-rich extract, enriching agents: vitamins (vitamin C, niacin, pantothenic acid, vitamin B6, vitamin B2, vitamin B1, folic acid, vitamin B12).

I looked for anything that stood out as a reason for the way I have been over the last couple of days and I saw the 5th highest ingredient was ‘palm fat’, what on earth is palm fat?  Fat from the palm of your hand?  I hope not, I hope my friend who bought me these as a gift didn’t buy them because the 5th highest ingredient was human hand, he wouldn’t do that, would he?  I looked for any other signs, I hunted high and low, through their range of pastas and who knows what else and finally, there it was, I found their secret ingredient which was…….Passion.  Brilliant.  I also noticed there was a warning on their website for their Milky Team Cinnamon Stars cereal, it may contain milk, which is ridiculous, it is called ‘Milky Team!’ and if people had milk allergies why would they eat cereal which traditionally is consumed with milk!

I got back to work and focussed on going to Tesco at lunch to find out if any cereals there contained palm fat, unfortunately when I got to Tesco I got as far as seeing strawberry laces for 39p and got sidetracked and completely forgot to check.  At the checkout I noticed a middle aged lady working on the checkout had devised a brilliant plan, sat next to her till she had her own personal mini club card, whenever people didn’t have a club card she scanned hers, superb club card point opportunism.  Surely her job is worth more than club card points?  I thought to myself “is this lady the biggest fool in the world?” but I didn’t feel I had the divine right to confirm if she was or not and as it turned out she was to have a challenger later in the evening.

Holly (my wife) suggested we get Domino’s Pizza for tea, far from me to turn down a take away I ordered, got in the car and picked up the pizzas, chicken strips, ‘gourmet’ garlic bread and extra dips, driving home I was flicking between radio stations and found one playing ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ by Queen, they won my listenership for the rest of the journey.  As I headed towards home they had a ‘local notices’ section, in which they inform the listener of up and coming events, the presenter (who to be fair to him probably does it on a voluntary bases rather than getting paid) starts reading out the events then said that on Thursday 10th January there was a read through for a Shakespeare play in a local hall, it starts at 7:30pm.  I then realised that Thursday 10th January is today, I then looked at the clock to see it was 7:53pm already, he had read a notice out for an event that had already started, he was in auto pilot.  You could hear in his voice he had realised what he had done, like any true pro he continued and moved on, reading out events for the weekend and next week, as I pulled in to my driveway I was just about to switch the engine off only to hear him read out another event for today, Tuesday 10th January, which “starts at 7:00pm and finishes at 8:00pm”, it was now 7:55pm.  This guy was priceless.  I am glad it’s not just me struggling this week.

The Cereal Quest: Day 40 – A Sad Day and the End of Mlekotaki

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This morning bought the sad end to my Polish cereal Mlekotaki, I had a slightly larger than usual serving because there wasn’t enough for two bowls but slightly more than one.  I wanted them to go out with a bang.  They were of course delicious in their strange unique way, but all good things come to an end and their empty marzipan smelling bag sadly had to go to its long term home:


it was a nice touch that one of the ‘milky team’ was waving as I put her in the bin.

Here is all you need to know about Mlekotaki:

Cereal Cost:  6 Polish Zloty (approximately £1.20)
Real Servings per Box: 4
Cost per Serving: 30p
Pros – A unique cereal with unrivalled flavour and taste.  Cheap cost per serving.  A good gift to bring back for friends if travelling to Poland.
Cons – Polish, am yet to see it in Tesco.  Makes me shake for no reason about 3 hours after consumption.  Lingering aftertaste.

I got the shakes slightly later than usual today, maybe because there was more for my body to process, so I went for an early lunch to try and counteract the reaction to the Mlekotaki cereal, I might work about 40 minutes from home but I work right near pretty much every take away there is so I popped to Subway for a Meatball Marinara, 2 things surprised me about this trip.  The first was that for the first time ever when I said 6″ the lady serving gave me the bigger side of the footlong roll she cut in half, almost miraculous.  The second was a group of old ladies, and I mean 75+ by old, were sitting eating their lunch and were having the McDonalds or Burger King debate, this was brilliant, they were so passionate, one lady even bought up the most rare argument in favour of McDonalds, Fillet O’Fish, incredible.  I was pleased to see that even people 50 years older than me are still having that debate.  The answer of course is…….McDonalds.  I thought this was going to be the most surprising thing that I would experience today until I was driving home.  My car has recently been making a clicking noise as I accelerate, I took it to the local garage earlier in the week and they said it was probably electrical and not to worry, he said if he was me he would just drive it.  So I did.  Until on the way home the clicking got a bit louder, luckily for me I have a volume control on my radio so I drowned out the clicking with some UCB Radio.  That was until I tried to pull away from traffic lights and I heard a loud clunk, followed by what sounded like a double decker bus coming out of my bonnet,  I continued until I could pull over by a shoe repairers (this isn’t a general rule when breaking down, just a fact) where my car conked out.  Luckily the men who worked there (after noticing my AFC Bournemouth sticker and chanting Eddie Howe’s name at me) pushed me in to a safe place and after a short time RAC had dropped me home.  Today has been frustrating but the energy given to be by Mlekotaki got my through.  Tomorrow I start a new cereal.  Will it be anywhere near as good as this?  We shall see.

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