Granola, tastebuds, and a COVID-19 lesson.

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As always, Koshereye is always seeking out quality kosher products for our readers. It was early winter when we got the email. There was a kosher brand out of Arizona pumping out a new line of granola. We happen to love granola, whether it’s in our morning yogurt, our pies, or just a good ol’ handful straight of the bag, so we were intrigued to try Laura’s Gourmet granola.

A box arrived at our doorstep a few weeks later, inside three neatly packaged bags of granola. Before digging right in, we decided to execute a taste test. Each bag was labeled a specific flavor; we reviewed the three flavors out-loud, “sinful cinnamon crunch, pumpkin pecan crunch, honey roasted peanut crunch.” My wife then told me to turn around; she poured each bag into a separate bowl in random order and then had me turn back around. “Let’s see how accurate these flavors are,” whispered my skeptical tastebuds.

As I made a blessing on the food and dove straight in, I must say, Laura, nailed the flavors. I went three for three and guessed each flavor correct. The accuracy of the flavors was a bonus; each bite was crunchy and flavorful.

After doing a victory lap around the kitchen for guessing all flavors correctly, I had the following flashback. You see, I had Corona back in March when we knew very little about the virus. Among the challenges my wife and I experienced, such as being one of the first couples in the U.S. to cancel their wedding and lead the way for backyard weddings, I lost my taste and smell. As a person who finds peace in cooking, this loss was very unsettling for me. I started to worry. “Why can’t I taste or smell? Is it from the virus? Am I ever going to get my taste back?”

I went 23 years of my life, taking my taste and smell for granted. The experience was a shock to my soul. I am not in control of my taste and smell; I do not decide if they will work when I wake up in the morning, or when I want to try my wife’s cooking, or even if I make a blessing on my food. There is a creator who designed me and gifted me with the senses of taste and smell. What a gift! Not only can I taste and smell, but G-d created millions of spices, ingredients, and variations of foods with millions of unique smells and flavors for me to enjoy.

I am grateful to have found Laura’s Gourmet Granola because her products are simply delicious, but I am also thankful to her for the meaningful experience I had with her product.