Universal Yums – Turkey 2017 – A Review

For anyone that hasn’t stumbled across Universal Yums, it is a monthly subscription box which promises yummy snacks from all around the world. Each month, a country is featured and you can opt in for one of two boxes – Yum Box (6+ snacks) or Yum Yum box (12+ snacks).

Here’s a colourful diagram from them outlining how it works:

universal yums

I was intrigued after coming across a promotional video on Facebook, in which various tasters tried goodies from Pakistan. I went on their site which can be found here and ordered a box straight away! As I loved my first box, I decided to opt for the larger Yum Yum box to trial it out. A few days after I placed my order, Universal Yums dropped the country name on their Instagram page. Needless to say, I was delighted that it was Turkey as I have visited there and loved the food! I was really disappointed as the box was held for ages without the tracking information being updated so I received this box a lot later than I did the first box. Here’s what I got:

Hazerbaba Turkish Delights 

With it being a Turkish box, I felt obliged to try these first and it is safe to say that they did not disappoint! I have had various different turkish delights, including authentic and whilst i’m not a connoisseur, I could clearly taste the difference to these handmade goodies. They had a strong but not overwhelming rose flavour, delicately dusted in icing sugar and the right amount of jelliness.

Today Croissant with Thyme, Basil, and Olive Oil

A few years ago if anyone would have said savoury and croissant in the same sentence, I would’ve turned it down. However, after visiting KSA where croissants with a cream cheese filling were a norm for breakfast, I was willing to give this a go. I’m not going to lie, the smell was a little pungent and off-putting but I soldiered on. The first bite was a weird sensation but it sure was moreish. Just like I dip my normal croissants into jam, I could imagine dipping this into some cool salsa or pesto.

Elvan Banana Donut

One word – yum! It tasted like the banana Nesquik milkshake in doughnut form, what’s not to like?! The banana icing with melt-in-your mouth sprinkles were amazing, but what took this doughnut to the next level was the banana jam-like custard oozing out of the centre.

Miniki Turtacik

These were like a cross between a shortcake biscuit topped with an orangier looser jelly than Jaffa cakes, finished off with some autumnal sprinkles and a good old jam tart. I definitely enjoyed these as I love Jaffa cakes and orange marmalade and the flavouring was similar yet more intense.

Toffix Mastic

Chewing into damp wood was what first came to mind when I eagerly popped one of these into my mouth. After the initial yuck sensation though, I didn’t mind it too much, maybe I should be a fussy eater!

Ibon Toffee

These lovely sweets reminded me of my childhood Campinos (you know the ones, swirly with a creamy taste!) These came in melon, peach and strawberry (i think-sorry!) flavours and were quite nice. They were hard on the inside with a softer chewier inside. If I had more, I’d pop them in my bag for an on-the-go lift.

Torku Sade Mevlana Seker

As I like Earl Grey tea (not my go-to but still a nice brew) I was looking forward to these as they have the same undertone of bergamot which is a citrussy orange oil. These were definitely a surprise. The flavour was not too sweet but it was the texture that I liked. Imagine an edible bath bomb, these melted in your mouth and were really moreish.

Ulker Clip Sesame Sticks

Talking about moreish, I found myself going back for another one of these. They were really thin, crispy breadsticks which were coated in sesame seeds. I enjoyed mine by dipping them into Nutella during those inevitable elevenses munchies.

Baharati Ulker Krispi Kraker

These tasted like a sour cream and herb type flavour and were a tad underwhelming. I ate them because I opened the packet and hate wasting food.

Acili Ulker Krispi Kraker

These were probably my least favourite item of the box. It said they were a spicy flavour but they tasted more like a smoked paprika. The texture was like tiny crackers or Ritz biscuits, which was a refreshing change but I didn’t like the flavour 🙁

Torku Cocoa Helva

With an underlying sesame taste, this helva had the texture of a crumbly fudge. It’s obvious that it’s eaten at funerals as it’s ever so comforting. The cocoa wasn’t overpowering but enhanced the sesame taste.

Miniki Milk Cream Chocolate Bar

A Turkish version of Milky Way which went down a treat. Soft nougat coated in milk chocolate which was a mouthful of sweet goodness.

Torku Pistachio Cikolata Bar

Pistachio and chocolate – what’s not to like?! This was like a Dairy Milk Whole Nut bar but with pistachios instead of hazelnuts. The only downside I’d say was that the chocolate was quite sweet and did overpower the pistachios just a tad.

O’lala Souffle Cake

Ooh la la indeed! This little treat was like an internal hug of chocolaty goodness. I followed the recommendation of microwaving the cake for 12 seconds and it was sure worth the wait. The super-cute mini spoon with it made it feel extra special. Could I please have some more?!

Disclosure: some items contained edible beef gelatine, however after liaising with a Turkish friend of mine, I felt like the items were permissible as they were manufactured in Turkey. I still stand by the motto – if in doubt, leave it out! 

The next box is the festive Christmas box with a selection of snacks around the world – here’s hoping I get my hands on that box soon!

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