Wednesday, June 24, 2009

The Cadbury Crunchie

Despite being a Cadbury classic in the UK since 1929, I had never heard of the Crunchie until a few weeks ago when I spotted it during a recent candy store visit. The Crunchie is a chocolate-covered sponge toffee bar. The center is a buttery and well, crunchy golden sponge candy that slowly melts away in your mouth. The texture of sponge candy is similar to that of a Whopper malted milk ball in that it kind of disintegrates from the saliva of your tongue. However, this sponge candy has a delicious toffee flavor that is rich, but by being a "sponge" is also airy. To top it off, the bar is covered by creamy Cadbury chocolate. And not the mockolate that is making its way into some stateside candy bars, this is the good stuff.

I recommend enjoying the Crunchie in small bites. This bar is thick! And with the solid center it's easy to bite off more than you can chew.

Monday, June 08, 2009

P-NOT Butter Flavored Sixlets

I am actually angry at this candy, if it is possible to harbor such feelings toward a candy. Why am I angry? I am angry because I put this candy in my mouth and it tastes like vomit. And I'm not using the word "vomit" in a figurative sense, quite literally it tastes like vomit. You know the sour, burn taste that puke leaves in your mouth and throat? Well, in case you forgot, it is captured here in deceptively cute, colorful shiny balls of candy. I would compare their flavor to the Harry Potter Bertie Bott's Every Flavor Jelly Beans...the vomit ones, of course.

These Sixlets are supposed to be peanut butter flavored, while containing no peanuts or tree nut products so people with peanut allergies can eat them. It's a nice idea, but too bad they are just so awful. I guess I was expecting them to taste comparable to Reese's Pieces, but they don't. Luckily I do not have a peanut allergy, but if I did, I think I would rather go without then eat these. I hate to come down hard on Sixlets because I do love the chocolate flavored ones, even though I know they are not "real" chocolate. The P-NOT Butter flavored Sixlets are just P-NOT good. Eat at your own risk!

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

The Idaho Spud

Ahh, where to begin with the Idaho Spud? The first time I had an Idaho Spud a few years ago, I totally loved it. I remember it tasting like semi-melted chocolate ice cream. Flash forward to June 2009, I have my second Idaho Spud's kind of grody. Is my mind playing tricks on me? Have my taste buds changed? I know its not the recipe that has changed. The Spud has been produced by the Idaho Candy Company under the Owyhee brand name since 1918.

Surprisingly, the Idaho Spud does not contain potato. Its name is an homage to the potato producing state where the candy is produced and the lumpy, bumpy shape it shares with the vegetable. The Idaho Spud is a lump of marshmallow covered in chocolate and coated with coconut. I have no issues with the chocolate coating or the coconut. Both of those variables are pleasant and quite tasty. In fact, I ended up peeling off the chocolate coating which has a great cocoa flavor, and just eating that. The Spud gets weird at its core. The marshmallow is strange. It is stoney gray in color and smells like maple even though "maple" is not a listed ingredient. The texture is not like any marshmallow I have experienced before. It's very dense, wet, and sticky. The closet thing I can compare it to is the inside of a Nerf football, or one of those squishy stress balls. I was afraid to swallow it.

In his book, Candyfreak, Steve Almond recounts his visit to the Idaho Candy Company, which includes a firsthand look at the creation of the Idaho Spud. He learns that where most marshmallows are made with gelatin, the Spud marshmallow is made with a seaweed derivative called agar agar. This gives it "resilience" according to company president Dave Wagers. I'm not sure resilience is what I'm looking for in my candy, but hey it's been around since 1918, who am I to argue with that?

The Idaho Spud gets props for its cute, retro wrapper. I have a soft spot in my heart for independent candy companies, especially the ones with a history. I love seeing black and white photos of ladies in hair nets wrapping candy bars. Therefore, I am determined to find an Idaho Candy Company product that I love. Unfortunately, the Spud wasn't it, but I'll write about it when I do!

Idaho Candy Company

Great article on the continuing popularity of the Idaho Spud from the Deseret News, 2006