From whipping up the glorious Dalgona coffee, 2-minute mug cakes for midnight binges to baking Banana bread as a rescue for dull days and bingeing on indulgent food while streaming my favourite web series – the pandemic, and the protracted lockdown in 2020 led most (if not all) of us to rely on snacking as a lifeline.
Remember scouting for extra packets of Oreo Cadbury Dipped cookies as you place your order online and the soul-satisfying experience of taking a bite of it after a dull day at home? Little moments around food shaped our days. And so beautifully, these bite-sized moments became the essence of crossing days on the calendar and waiting for the pandemic to be over.
If I were to recall the lockdown days – I mostly picture myself either browsing through webpages of new food brands that I came across on Instagram or snacking with my family while working from home, watching movies, or late-night chats. And to say the least, snacking had almost taken over the eating schedule so much, that large meals were often ignored.
Comfort food became the ‘new normal’ in trying times. In fact, according to Mondelēz International’s Second Annual State of Snacking™ Report and the Harris Poll almost 95% of Indians term food as one of the connecting elements in their lives during the pandemic. Speaking of comfort food, Cadbury ChocoBakes Choc Layered Cake were a delightful new discovery that our family relished when we wanted a quick snack to satisfy our cravings. During the pandemic, I have surely had my little bite-sized moments that made surviving through it a little easier!
Relishing the comfort of snacking
The pandemic has indeed changed me from a voracious cooking enthusiast to a more calmed-down snacker. While I did enjoy my fair share of pantry cooking or whipping fancy desserts to the likes of social media trends, the sheer need to cook food three times a day having been locked down in the house turned into a stressful activity. And the relief of choosing a snack over cooking a 3-course meal was life-changing. It didn’t just comfort my stressed soul, but also gave me the freedom to relish food that I had otherwise ignored most of my life.
In these trying times, I have relished biting on those chocolate chip cookies more than I have ever in my life. No guilt attached!
Snacking helped foster community
From little bites of desserts while watching a movie with my family to discussing new snacks and binging on them over hour-long zoom calls with my friends – snacking has only strengthened my connection with others.
The report further showcases that 76% people found comfort via snacks during the pandemic. Donating food to the community, sending over some home-cooked desserts to friends, or just celebrating birthdays at home with a quick-heat cake – snacking has helped each one of us get closer to our family and friends one bite at a time.
Earning your indulgence
Work calls, zoom meetings, fitness resolutions, cooking food, cleaning – the list of work at home has been endless and tiring. The joy of having a moment to yourself after surviving a heavy day is incomparable. It is in these moments, that snacking became an earned indulgence to treat yourself or others at home. Warmed up cookies, ice-cream, or just a bowl of noodles – the solace and calm after a stormy day indeed kept us going.
Snacking made us feel more connected to ourselves!
Surviving the pandemic has been an arduous task amidst all the work at home and the stress of the world. However, these bite-sized moments during the pandemic made it all worthwhile for me. It hasn’t just changed my perspective on food or snacks, but also kept me sane during unprecedented times. So, if anyone asks me if I were to cook rice and dal for lunch, or would settle for a bunch of cookies over a call with a friend – I would choose the latter!