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Marshmallow

Friday, September 18, 2009

Katjes Tappsy

Katjes TappsyI bought Katjes Tappsy because they’re cute.

And they’re also licorice. Actually, the completely unattractive sticker on the front of the bag informs me in English (the rest of the package is in German) that it’s Licorice Foam Candy.

They’re shaped like panda faces and I have to say that they’re fraktacularlary cute. So cute I just wanted to eat them up. And the name? Tappsy! How could you not like something called Tappsy? (It reminded me of Stampy.)

What was also fun was the fact that they’re a European candy, so they don’t use any artificial colorings and seem to have all natural flavorings. (I don’t know if ammonium chloride is consider natural or not ... I mean, it’s a mineral.)

Katjes Tappsy

The light & flexible disk are shaped like cartoon panda faces. They’re about 1.5 inches across at the ears. They come in two varieties - licorice faced and foam faced. (Panda’s don’t actually look like that, they have white faces with black eyes and ears.) The white faced ones had little noses made of a berry flavored jelly. (Real pandas also have berry flavored noses, but couldn’t find any verification of this, so you’ll just have to take my word for it and of course make mention of it in conversation until someone starts sending around emails and Snopes investigates.)

The little faces have a kind of cock-eyed smile that reminded me of Wybie from Coraline.

The licorice parts are quite mellow - a light anise flavor and not overtly sweet and a good caramel & molasses undertone. The texture is more like a chewy licorice than the foamy stuff - not the wheat based chew of the US/Australia and not quite a jelly or gummi. The foam white part is rather like a marshmallow - but smashed, just a bit more dense and not at all sticky.

I loved the licorice parts and ate the licorice-faced ones first (sadly they didn’t make up half the bag). Licorice-eared ones were just a little bland, so towards the end, I just ate their ears and tossed the face ... it’s the candy equivalent of shark finning.

I would definitely buy them again, though I would like to find them in bulk bins so I can pull out a better proportion of licorice. (They also come in a fruity version.) I looked on the Katje’s website and think there may be some other products that are more balanced to my liking like the Domino Delicious (which appears to be the first same-sex-marriage-marketed candy I’ve seen - well, besides the Rainbow Mentos).

Finally, here’s a commercial for Tappsy starring Heidi Klum:

I don’t know what’s going on in that commercial except that it’s a pretty accurate depiction of my Saturday mornings in my breezy white-clad bed, rolling around with my candy.

Finally, just a note about the calories: each piece has only 28 calories. And a whole ounce clocks in at 97 calories. So this is definitely a candy you can use a a little low-calorie treat that looks like a high calorie one.

Related Candies

  1. Van Slooten Lakrids Figurer
  2. Necco Paas Gummi Baby Bunnies
  3. Van Slooten - Autodrop Total Loss
  4. Licorice Assortment
  5. Katjes Tropical Gummis & Yogurt Gums
  6. Panda Bars
Name: Tappsy
    RATING:
  • 10 SUPERB
  • 9 YUMMY
  • 8 TASTY
  • 7 WORTH IT
  • 6 TEMPTING
  • 5 PLEASANT
  • 4 BENIGN
  • 3 UNAPPEALING
  • 2 APPALLING
  • 1 INEDIBLE
Brand: Katjes
Place Purchased: Cost Plus World Market (Glendale)
Price: $2.49
Size: 7 ounces
Calories per ounce: 97
Categories: Licorice, Marshmallow, Katjes, Germany, All Natural

POSTED BY Cybele AT 1:29 pm     Comments (8)

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Rocky Road Supreme Peanut Butter

Rocky Road Supreme Peanut ButterA couple of years ago I got a preview of a new line of candy bars from Annabelle’s, makers of Rocky Road. The new Rocky Road Supreme bars didn’t even have wrappers yet when I tried them at the All Candy Expo in September of 2007. They were finally released last year, but it took me another full year to find them on store shelves.

I finally found them at a new shop in Burbank called Rocket Fizz. Though it’s supposed to be a soda pop store - with hundreds and hundreds of varieties of sodas sold in single bottles, it was also a candy shop with hundreds and hundreds of items to choose from. Amongst the mostly classic offerings I found the Rocky Road Supreme Peanut Butter Bar. Though it was a whopping $1.99, it’s also nearly 3 ounces ... so consider it a king sized bar.

The package describes it as Handmade Marshmallow and Peanut Butter with Crunchy Peanuts, Double Dipped in Velvety Milk Chocolate. I stopped eating several days ago in order to accommodate this extra 460 calorie pop.

Rocky Road Supreme Peanut Butter

The bar was a little worse for wear, though I tried to choose carefully from the bars on the shelf. I often have this problem often with Rocky Road bars ... they might benefit from at least a waxed paperboard tray.

The layers are nearly equal strips of marshmallow and peanut butter. Luckily the peanut butter is on the bottom, as it’s the densest. Considering how much peanut butter there is in this bar, plus the peanuts on the top, it doesn’t smell very peanutty. Just vanilla-sweet, a little milky and a little like roasted nuts.

The bar has a nice bite to it. The chocolate is soft and not at all flaky and the marshmallow is firm enough that it springs back easily but is dense enough not to give into the weight of the chocolate shell.

The flavors at first do well. The peanut butter layer has a salty pop and a mellow nutty flavor. The vanilla marshmallow isn’t too sweet and gives a bouncy chew to the whole thing. The chocolate coating is a little lackluster in the flavor department, but also not too sweet. The peanuts give a little crunch. The whole thing is a bit slick & fatty though, it never quite melts.

As I went on, I tried eating the separate elements. The chocolate is satiny smooth, but lacks a real cocoa punch. It’s all about the texture, I guess. The peanuts on top were kind of chewy instead of crunchy. The marshmallow is actually great, mostly because it’s foamy and has a smooth texture without being too sweet. The peanut butter layer though is weird. It’s very firm and has a greasy Crisco texture to it. A look at the list of ingredients reveals why #4 on the list is partially hydrogenated soybean & cottonseed oils ... that comes before #5 which is peanut butter.

Now I’m as much a fan of fat as the next person, but fat has to add texture ... it needs to give a pleasing mouthfeel as well as deliver flavors. This peanutty layer simply doesn’t. It’s like the grease is a cloaking device.

I really wanted to like this, I wanted it to be a powerful combination of textures & flavors. Instead it just left me feeling heavy & unsatisfied. (And I didn’t finish it, so now I get to have lunch!)

Here’s Sera’s review from Candy Addict.

Related Candies

  1. Choco-Fudge Mallow Sundae
  2. Peeps Chocolate Mousse (Bears & Bunnies)
  3. Bubu Lubu
  4. Russell Stover Orange Marshmallow Pumpkin
  5. Dark Chocolate Rocky Road
  6. Rocky Road
Name: Rocky Road Supreme Peanut Butter
    RATING:
  • 10 SUPERB
  • 9 YUMMY
  • 8 TASTY
  • 7 WORTH IT
  • 6 TEMPTING
  • 5 PLEASANT
  • 4 BENIGN
  • 3 UNAPPEALING
  • 2 APPALLING
  • 1 INEDIBLE
Brand: Annabelle's Candy
Place Purchased: Rocket Fizz (Burbank)
Price: $1.99
Size: 2.96 ounces
Calories per ounce: 155
Categories: Chocolate, Marshmallow, Peanuts, United States, Annabelle's

POSTED BY Cybele AT 9:23 am     Comments (5)

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Compartes Chocolates

Though I wouldn’t call Los Angeles a candy city, we certainly have our share of sweet spots. I’m more likely to go to San Francisco for candy adventures than the west side, but after promising for several years I finally made it to Compartes Chocolatier to pick up some items for Candy Blog.

Compartes Assortment

This wasn’t actually my first visit to the Brentwood shop, but certainly the first one in this century (I was a D-Girl in the 90s and my office was not far from there). I had to see the place since the new generation, Jonathan Grahm expanded the classic line of stuffed fruits & novelty molded chocolates with truffles & ganaches with inventive flavor combinations.

The shop is compact but has a lovely display area on the wall of the chocolates and the main counter that appears to be divided in to two areas: classic offerings and modern. (My distinctions, not theirs.) They serve gelato so there are a few tables inside and out front. (For those who follow Compartes on Twitter, I did spot Jonathan at his laptop tucked in the corner at one of the tables.)

Compartes Ginger Medallions & Orange Peels

The classic products are sold by the pound (as fruits & nuts tend to come in various sizes) while the truffles & bonbons are sold by the piece. The classics were $35 a pound and the bonbons were $2 each. I left the shop with $50 worth of chocolate in one rather large & heavy box.

Classic Chocolates

Compartes Glace Fig in Dark ChocolateChocolate Dipped Glace Fig

The fig is glossy is and sticky. It looks like a light fig (green) like a Kalamata. I prefer black figs (Mission) mostly because they have darker flavors ... it’s like the difference between golden raisins & regular raisins. It’s very sweet at first, the figgy flavors are tangy, a little grassy from the seeds with some raspberry & floral-like green tea flavors. The dark chocolate offsets this well, especially by bringing in the creamy melt.

It’s definitely show-stopping beautiful. Best eaten fresh & quickly.

Compartes Candied Orange Peel Dipped in ChcoolateCandied Orange Peel dipped in Dark Chocolate

These tiny little fingers were wonderfully shiny on the peel edge. It was all peel, too, cooked in sugar syrup to a light and translucent tenderness - no trace of acrid & foamy white pith. The dark chocolate looked silken brown. Each piece was a combination of bitterness from the orange oils and dark chocolate, vibrant zest and sweet citrus & cocoa flavors. The texture was chewy & a buttery creaminess. Perfection.

Hazelnut & Orange in Dark Chocolate (not pictured)

These were simple little dark chocolate cups that could have easily been coconut haystacks. I was hoping that the combo of the chocolate & nuts with those awesome orange pieces would work ... sadly the whole thing tasted a bit “cheesy” and I couldn’t figure out why ... something about the hazelnuts lacking their nuttiness. I’ll pass on these in the future.

Compartes Ginger Medallions

Ginger Medallions

The ginger coins are tender and soft, a bit juicy. With citrus notes and a warm woodsy burn, the sweet candied ginger goes well with the bittersweet chocolate that has a slightly dry finish. There’s no trace of sugary grain here, it’s more of a smooth jelly texture. Beautiful to look and and expertly made.

I would buy a pound of these. Ginger is a root vegetable, right?

Compartes Assortment

Modern Chocolate

Mexican Hot - (skull & crossbones)

A strong mix of cayenne & black pepper notes in dark chocolate. The ganache is smooth while the dark chocolate flavors are woodsy with a slight tannin to go with the earthy pepper flavors.

Compartes Classic Dark Chocolate Truffle

Original - (blue stripes)

I try to buy these wherever I go. It’s always good to try the base for everything else. The chocolate enrobing was perfect, the little design on top was cute and easy to remember. The dark chocolate flavors were mild, the ganache was very buttery with a good smooth and quick melt.

Vanilla & Black Pepper - (stripes with dots)

I should have taken a photo of this, I didn’t realize it would be a white cream center until I bit into it far from the camera. The immediate hit was of vanilla and butter, in a cupcake sort of vibe. Then the peppercorns kicked in, giving the vanilla more of a rum & woodsy moderation. Rather sweet, but with a lingering brightness from the pepper & vanilla pods.

Jasmine Tea (pink flowers & blue lines)

The dark chocolate takes a back seat to the strong & musky floral notes of the jasmine. The tea adds a little pop of acidity to it that gives a fresh lingering feeling to this. The ganache is silky smooth and not too sweet.

Blackberry & Sage (blue & purple square mosaic)

The blackberry is a dark and jammy flavor with a light tangy touch, the sage brings it back around with an herbal splash - a bit on the strong side, so much so that I’m not sure I’d know that it was blackberry without a key. Still, a sage truffle is great.

Compates Candied Fennel Chocolate

Candied Fennel

This little ganache center was topped with some lightly candied (glazed) fennel seeds (instead of the brightly colored candy shells that most of us are familiar with). Fennel on its own has a light sweetness and anise flavor. These brought out the dark licorice and molasses notes of the chocolate. Smooth and satiny with a curious fibery crunch from the seeds.

Compartes Lavender Marshmallow

Lavender Marshmallow in Dark Chocolate

Yes, it’s a bit jarring to see that bright lavender center. The marshmallow was moist, fluffy but dense. Sweet but not sticky, it had a good bite. The flavor was woodsy & floral - but a bit odd combined with the chocolate. The whole thing reminded me of bug spray ... though not in a bad way, just that the floral notes weren’t quite as balsam-ish as I’d hoped.

Compartes Coffee & Cacao Nib and Coffee Chocolate

Coffee & Cacao Nib and Coffee

The ganache in this pair is flavored with real coffee, so there’s a slight grain to the otherwise silky center. The flavor was good, rich & bold. I liked the crunchy nibs but I’m not that fond of eating coffee beans when it messes up the texture of well-tempered chocolate.

Compartes - Fleur de Sel Caramels (milk & dark)

Fleur de Sel Caramels

I’ve made it pretty well known that I favor “wet” caramels, that’s the chewy stuff that has a good stringy pull and long, smooth chew. These were the “short” caramel style and have a strong butter flavor. I wasn’t fond of the texture, which was a cross between fudge & caramel and the lack of toasted sugar notes.

Compartes - Exotics

Shichimi - (the spice dusted one) this is made of seven spices: red chili pepper, roasted orange peel, yellow and black sesame seeds, Japanese pepper, seaweed, and ginger. The spices here angle towards the toasted sesame and chili peppers. I didn’t get much citrus out of it. The whole thing kind of left my lips burning, but the chocolate & fatty ganache balanced it well. The only issue here was that the spices kind of got out of their cup and I caught a few of these flavors in the other chocolates I ate.

Smoked Salt - (square with black crystals on top) delicate and light chocolate ganache with an earthy & metallic aftertaste to the salt. I’m beginning to think that I don’t care for smoked salts. Often they remind me of a campground in the morning, that lingering scent of a fire gone out mixed with damp sleeping bags from the morning dew & coffee made in an aluminum pot.

Cashew Fruit - (gold sphere) - this wasn’t a ganache but a bit of gooey cream center, kind of like a runny creme brulee. The flavor was a bit like green bananas. Smooth, a touch of grassy brightness and sweet milk.

Compartes Candied Orange Peel Dipped in ChcoolateI loved the classic items. I’d go back and buy the orange peels (some of the best I’ve ever had), figs (though I’d like to have some candied figs too) and ginger medallions in a heartbeat. I thought the price was really competitive and fair ($30 when sold in full pound boxes) for a line that is so labor intensive and requires top quality ingredients.

The truffles & bonbons were good and I enjoyed some of the flavor combos and of course the plain one. The price was a bit higher than I’m willing to do for such small items unless they’re particularly unique. The great option though is that it’s a fun shop to visit, they’re very knowledgeable about their products (they’re made right there, after all). They also have a line of African-themed bonbons called Chocolate for a Cause that are made with African-sourced flavors (mango, coconut, cardamom, plantain, grains of paradise, red rooibus tea). They’re a fundraiser for Relief International and their projects in Darfur and include a bead bracelet. After getting emails about these for year and pretty much going there to pick up a box ... they were sold out.

If I’m in the area, I will definitely visit again. The bonbons change constantly as new produce comes into season & Jonathan experiments with new combinations so I give them a 7 out of 10. I’ll probably continue to taste the bonbons but will go home with the fruits/ginger so they get a 9 out of 10.

Compartes Brentwood Boutique Chocolate Lounge
912 South Barrington Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90049

310-826-3380

Related Candies

  1. Pete’s Gourmet Confections: Marshmallows
  2. Valerie Confections: Pour Homme and Pour Elle
  3. L’Artisan du Chocolat
  4. Valerie Lemon Hazelnut Nougat
  5. Chuao Chocolatier
  6. K Chocolatier
  7. Jacques Torres
  8. Boule Chocolates and Fruit Pate
Name: Candied Fruits & Chocolate Bonbons
    RATING:
  • 10 SUPERB
  • 9 YUMMY
  • 8 TASTY
  • 7 WORTH IT
  • 6 TEMPTING
  • 5 PLEASANT
  • 4 BENIGN
  • 3 UNAPPEALING
  • 2 APPALLING
  • 1 INEDIBLE
Brand: Compartes Chocolates
Place Purchased: Compartes (Brentwood)
Price: $50.00
Size: approximately 22 ounces
Calories per ounce: unknown
Categories: Chocolate,Caramel, Coffee, Ginger, Marshmallow, Nuts, United States, Chocolatier, All Natural, Los Angeles

POSTED BY Cybele AT 8:30 am     Comments (8)

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Cadbury Easter Mallows

Cadbury Easter MallowsCadbury does more for Easter than just the Mini Eggs and Creme Eggs, but we see little of that in the United States. I was lucky to find these imported goodies at my local Cost Plus World Market.

This tray of Limited Edition Easter Mallows is huge. Even though it only weighs 5.29 ounces, the large tray made it look like there was a lot of candy in here.

The clear tray holds the 10 chocolate covered marshmallow domes. They’re cradled well, and though a few of mine were cracked (could have been me treating the package roughly), none of them were leaking.

Cadbury Easter Mallows

The candy construction is simple. A round cookie (biscuit) base with a dollop of Jaffa orange jam, then a heap of marshmallow, all covered in Cadbury milk chocolate.

They’re about 1.75 inches in diameter and about .75 inches high. The bite is soft and the chocolate shell is crisp and adheres pretty well to the marshmallow.

They smell like dairy milk chocolate before biting, but after biting through to the jam center, it’s definitely orange. The flavor of the jam is rather like marmalade, with a strong zest component along with some sweet syrup and tangy juice to it. The cookie base is soft and crumbly, like a graham cracker. The marshmallow, though soft and passable didn’t do much for me one way or the other. The milk chocolate coating is very sweet and has a dried milk flavor to it.

On the whole, these are very appealing. I really liked the flavorful punch of the center much better than the filled marshmallows I’ve had from Asia.

They were expensive though, at $2.99 for the tray (but I felt like I’ve been leaving my UK reader friends out lately). I’m not quite sure what makes them an Easter candy (maybe if they were egg shaped) or if there’s a non-Easter version that these are based on. The Cadbury site was no help. (But I did find out that these are sold at Aldi in the UK.)

Each Easter Mallow has 65 calories.

The gelatin is made from pork, so these are definitely not Halal, Kosher or vegetarian.

Related Candies

  1. EveryBurger
  2. Lindt Lindor Truffle Eggs
  3. Princess Marshmallow Eggs
  4. Lindt Chocolate Bunnies (Dark & Milk)
  5. Cadbury Canadian Creme Eggs
  6. Cadbury Orange Creme Eggs
Name: Easter Mallows (Limited Edition)
    RATING:
  • 10 SUPERB
  • 9 YUMMY
  • 8 TASTY
  • 7 WORTH IT
  • 6 TEMPTING
  • 5 PLEASANT
  • 4 BENIGN
  • 3 UNAPPEALING
  • 2 APPALLING
  • 1 INEDIBLE
Brand: Cadbury
Place Purchased: Cost Plus World Market (3rd & Fairfax)
Price: $2.99
Size: 5.29 ounces
Calories per ounce: 123
Categories: Chocolate, Cookie, Marshmallow, Cadbury, United Kingdom, Easter, Limited Edition

POSTED BY Cybele AT 10:35 am     Comments (14)

Monday, March 23, 2009

Russell Stover Marshmallow Rabbits

Russell Stover Marshmallow Rabbit PackagesA lot of Easter candies seem to get smaller as the years go by, and portion control is a responsible way to go. But sometimes you just want a big, luscious rabbit to sink your teeth into.

Russell Stover offers a lot of Easter goodies, I’m most fond of their eggs, which are usually fresh and the perfect size at about an ounce for less than the price of a candy bar these days.

But I was mighty tempted by these Marshmallow Rabbits. They’re two ounces, and since they’re marshmallow they’re pretty big. The packages are 6 inches tall in vibrant metallic colors with a rather realistic rabbit illustration on the front.

They come in two varieties, the regular vanilla marshmallow covered in milk chocolate and a chocolate marshmallow covered in milk chocolate.

Russell Stover Marshmallow RabbitsI wasn’t sure what to expect when I opened the package. Some marshmallow shapes can be curiously amorphous. These looked, for the most part, like the outline of the image on the package. They’re about 4.5 inches tall and about 2.5 inches at their widest part.

I’m not sure if it’s supposed to be a rabbit face with extra huge cheeks/jowls, or the whole body with a big meaty legs. (Part of me also thought they looked like a Buddha with rabbit ears.)

The chocolate is wonderfully rippled and I was pleased with how well I’d picked my rabbits out, as they were practically flawless (though I ended up dropping the chocolate one and denting his ear as I was taking the photo).

Russell Stover Marshmallow Rabbit

Russell Stover Marshmallow Rabbit

The chocolate shell has a nice snap to it and an overall chocolate malt scent. The marshmallow center is soft and moist with a strong vanilla flavor. It’s not quite as fluffy as some I’ve had, but it’s also very satisfying and has a bit of salt to it (60 mg in the whole 2 ounce portion).

Though the package says that a whole rabbit is a single serving, I found just the ears was plenty satisfying. The problem with a very large marshmallow items is that it’s hard to save some more for later without it making a mess. Still, I found them pretty easy to slip back into their packages and pinch shut for later. (I wouldn’t save it for more than a day or two, or else they get hard and tacky.)

Russell Stover Chocolate Marshmallow Rabbit

Russell Stover Chocolate Marshmallow Rabbit

The chocolate on this one looked slightly lighter than its vanilla counterpart, though that could have been all in my head (well, it’s all in my tummy now).

This one has a light cocoa scent that reminded me of cookie dough.

The chocolate has a similarly crisp snap but still doesn’t flake or crumble off of the marshmallow excessively.

The marshmallow is soft, though not as mushy as the vanilla. It has a very springy and latexy quality to it. The flavor is mild, like a cup of hot cocoa, definitely less sweet than the vanilla but also much saltier (210 mg per 2 ounce portion).

The chocolate on both was really flavorful and helped to make these some of the better chocolate marshmallows I’ve bought at the drug store. The novelty shape and price makes them a really good deal. But the large portion size and awkward shape makes them difficult to share (as I think traditional chocolate rabbits are). There are no artificial colors in them.

Related Candies

  1. Peeps Chocolate Mousse (Bears & Bunnies)
  2. Easter Novelty Toys (with candy)
  3. Russell Stover Eggs
  4. Russell Stover Orange Marshmallow Pumpkin
  5. Russell Stover Eggs (2007 edition)
  6. Russell Stover Cream Eggs
Name: Marshmallow Rabbits
    RATING:
  • 10 SUPERB
  • 9 YUMMY
  • 8 TASTY
  • 7 WORTH IT
  • 6 TEMPTING
  • 5 PLEASANT
  • 4 BENIGN
  • 3 UNAPPEALING
  • 2 APPALLING
  • 1 INEDIBLE
Brand: Russell Stover
Place Purchased: Rite Aid (Echo Park)
Price: $1.00
Size: 2 ounces
Calories per ounce: 115 & 120
Categories: Chocolate, Marshmallow, United States, Russell Stover, Easter

POSTED BY Cybele AT 9:21 am     Comments (7)

Friday, March 20, 2009

Elmer’s Dark Chocolate Heavenly Hash & Gold Brick Eggs

Elmer's Dark Chocolate Heavenly Hash EggA few years ago, after trying a petite box of Valentine’s chocolates from Elmer’s Candy Company I decided to track down their two most famous products: Heavenly Hash Egg and Gold Brick Egg. Oddly enough last week I was contacted by Elmer’s as they were promoting their new introduction, a dark chocolate version of both of the flagship products (can there be two flagships?).

I requested that they send along some of the original, as I’d tried very hard to find them in my area and they had no webstore. Sadly, they didn’t include them so this review today is in a bit of a vacuum.

The packaging is rather bold, a black background with a fluffy blue and white cloud for the logo & description. (It does look like it belongs with the Hot Tamales Licorice Jelly Beans from yesterday’s review.)

Elmer's Dark Chocolate Heavenly Hash EggThe Dark Chocolate Heavenly Hash Egg is rich dark chocolate, tender marshmallow and roasted almonds. This is a pretty big egg, clocking in at 1.33 ounces. I’m guessing these are sold individually like the Russell Stover eggs are, though mine arrived in a tray of six. For reference the Toasted Marshmallow Eggs I tried a couple of weeks ago were just .75 ounces each.

The eggs are pretty big, though each was a little different ranging from 3.5 to 3.75 inches long and about 2 inches at the widest.

From the description, I assumed that the almonds would be crushed bits mixed in with the marshmallow. I don’t know why that was what I was expecting, but when I saw the candy out of the package, I thought it was really lovely. A marshmallow plank with four or five little lumps (almonds) covered in rippled and shiny dark chocolate.

Elmer's Dark Chocolate Heavenly Hash EggThe chocolate has a nice snap to it and adheres to the marshmallow well, I didn’t have any issue with flaking. The almonds, when encountered, provide a crisp crunch. They’re well roasted, most I came across had a good toasted flavor. And it was pretty easy to plan my bites so as to get some almond in each one.

The marshmallow is sweet and moist, but it’s a bit soft and forms little peaks when I bite it. (Vastly different from the Pete’s Gourmet, as you can imagine.)

There’s very little flavor to the marshmallow, though every once in a while I got a bit of a honey note from it (though none is listed in the ingredients).

The dark chocolate isn’t complex but is definitely less sweet than the milk chocolate from the Toasted Marshmallow Eggs, which is definitely a plus. However, since I still had a Toasted egg left, I tried one and much preferred the cotton candy flavor of that center to the rather plain Heavenly Hash. In the end, the textures and overall execution is much better with the Heavenly Hash.

Rating: 7 out of 10

Elmer's Dark Chocolate Gold Brick EggThe original Elmer’s Gold Brick candy bar was introduced in 1936. It was priced at ten cents, twice the regular price for a bar at that time. Now they’re sold as an egg during Easter.

The Dark Chocolate Gold Brick Egg package describes it simply as dark chocolate covered pecan melt-a-way.

The wrapper is similarly bold & dark, a black background with a bright yellow egg holding the logo.

Elmer's Dark Chocolate Gold Brick EggIt clocks in a bit lighter than the Heavenly Hash, at only 1 ounce instead of 1.33 ounces (which was also far bigger because it had fluffy center).

This piece consists of a molded center, which is the melt-a-way which is then enrobed. Some of mine had big puddly feet, but the one I chose to photograph was more crisp looking.

There’s a slight rippling on the enrobing. They smell sweet, but a little more like fudge or hot cocoa than chocolate. It didn’t seem promising. Neither did the ingredients. It went like this: sugar, dark chocolate, partially hydrogenated palm kernel oil, pecans, chocolate, skim milk ... and so on to list the less than 2 percent ingredients.

Elmer's Dark Chocolate Gold Brick EggI had to nibble away pretty far on the one in the picture to make sure I got a pecan in there. (I did eat some pecans along the way, just no cross sections.)

Instead of a soft and melty melt-a-way, what I had here was more of a waxy and fudgy center. The texture wasn’t quite crumbly, but it certainly didn’t have that mouthfeel of even some candies made with tropical oils (coconut oil is good for that).

The flavor is rather empty, a bit like cocoa but not at all like deep, rich chocolate. There were a few pecan pieces, but they only provided some scant texture and not much on the flavor front.

Rating: 4 out of 10

I’m interested to taste the original Heavenly Hash, but have no interest in the Gold Brick. But they do have something called a Gold Brick Malt Egg that seems to be tempting me against my better judgment.

The Girl Tastes did a roundup last year of the classic milk chocolate Elmer’s Eggs (with similar results): Heavenly Hash & Gold Brick plus Pecan Egg & Eggceptionals

Related Candies

  1. Pete’s Gourmet Confections: Marshmallows
  2. Hershey’s Bliss
  3. Princess Marshmallow Eggs
  4. Russell Stover Orange Marshmallow Pumpkin
  5. Elmer’s Chocolate
  6. Boyer’s Mallo Cup
  7. Cup-O-Gold
Name: Dark Chocolate Heavenly Hash & Gold Brick Eggs
    RATING:
  • 10 SUPERB
  • 9 YUMMY
  • 8 TASTY
  • 7 WORTH IT
  • 6 TEMPTING
  • 5 PLEASANT
  • 4 BENIGN
  • 3 UNAPPEALING
  • 2 APPALLING
  • 1 INEDIBLE
Brand: Elmer's Candy Company
Place Purchased: samples from Elmer's
Price: retail $.50 each
Size: 1.33 ounces & 1 ounce
Calories per ounce: 128 & 160
Categories: Chocolate, Nuts, Marshmallow, United States, Elmer's Candy Company, Easter

POSTED BY Cybele AT 11:39 am     Comments (18)

Monday, March 16, 2009

Pete’s Gourmet Confections: Marshmallows

imageSince starting Candy Blog I’ve found there is a wonderful world of marshmallows out there beyond the See’s Scotchmallow.

Pete’s Gourmet Confections does something that I haven’t seen very often: they offer gourmet marshmallows (mallows, as he refers to them) and other handmade confections that are certified Kosher. If you want to see Pete Coyle making mallows, check out this piece from the Food Network (it looks like sticky, sticky work).

I was definitely intrigued when they contacted me, so they sent me some samples of their most popular products.

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This set of four was a good introduction, it’s their year round product, the Gourmet Assorted Dipped Marshmallows. Each piece is about a one inch cube.

  • Dark Chocolate covered Marshmallow - spongy and soft, a little on the dry side with a nice latexy chew. Fresh and satisfying, but doesn’t leave me feeling full.
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  • Dark Chocolate Covered Strawberry Marshmallow - a similar soft and bouncy texture with a kiss of strawberry scent and a faint pink color. There no hint of tartness, just the sweet floral flavors of strawberry. It tastes a lot like sunshine.
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  • White Chocolate covered Marshmallow - this is definitely not for those afraid of sweet. Though the marshmallows themselves are mild, the white chocolate is very milky and sticky sweet. It has strong vanilla notes as well.
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  • White Chocolate covered Chocolate Marshmallow - the texture of this marshmallow is a bit more dense, it’s not just a touch of cocoa in here for color. The cocoa flavors don’t really infuse the marshmallow so much as temper it to be less sweet and a little on the smoky side (maybe even a touch on the salt side). The white chocolate, though, bumps it back up with a dose of sugar.
  • imageBut chocolate covered handmade marshmallows, that’s been done, right? What bowled me over was the look of the Easter version, these beautiful chocolate dipped eggs.

    Pete’s Gourmet makes two different versions for Easter. The ones shown here are the Ukrainian Easter Eggs.

    Ukrainian Easter Eggs (Pysanka) are a folk art tradition characterized by geometric & stylized patterns made in the process of wax-resist. As a kid I loved making ornate Easter eggs and learned to blow them (make a small hole in either end of a raw egg, take a long pin or needle to pierce the yolk and then blow into one end to force the “scrambled” egg out into a bowl). The empty egg was then ready to be decorated. The traditional Ukrainian style is quite involved. Designs are laid onto the shell using melted wax, then the egg is dyed, more patterns are put on with wax, so that the lines and shapes are different colors. The final background colors after many layerings of dye are nearly black.

    imageThen the egg is carefully heated with a flame to melt the wax, and wiped off to reveal the colors beneath (and gives the egg a bit of seal and shine).

    These marshmallow eggs bear some of those designs on dark and white chocolate transfers.

    The Ukrainian mix of eggs come in Vanilla, Lemon and Strawberry. There was no key with them, and I think I gave away my lemon one, so I didn’t really get to try anything new here from the regular square version.

    image

    The Modern Chocolate Marshmallow Easter Eggs version is a spring pastel mix of flowers, waves and patterns. These are also white or dark chocolate - all over the classic vanilla marshmallow.

    What I enjoyed, about this format was that they’re not nearly as thick as the squares. These varied but were generally about one half to three quarters of an inch thick. There was more chocolate per bite than the squares, so the marshmallow to chocolate ratio varied (depending one whether I was at an edge).

    They’re also just stunning, everyone whom I’ve showed them to has admired them and also found them just as tasty as they look.

    The other amazing thing is the price. For a handcrafted confection, I was surprised to see on their website that they were only $12.99 for a box of 12. Each marshmallow is about

    two

    one ounce and over two inches long.

    imageOne other item I have to mention is the lavender marshmallow. (I have a chocolate piece here much like the squares.) It’s available as a flower-shaped pop which must look as amazing in person as the eggs do.

    The marshmallow has a wonderful dark floral flavor of lavender (which reminds me a lot of rosemary). It balances the roasted notes of the chocolate and the sweet marshmallow so wonderfully, it’s like it’s holding hands with both of them. I’m now driven to distraction thinking about all the other floral/herbal flavors that could be infused into marshmallows: rosewater, orange blossom, lemongrass, bergamot, pistachio and even violet.

    Again, at $10.99 for 12 pops (less than a dollar each), they sound like an incredible deal and would make wonderful favors or party decorations.

    imageThe packaging isn’t as modern and chic as some other gourmet artisan folks, they’re simple foil-type boxes with either a similar lid or a clear plastic lid (like the one show at the top) with the company sticker on it. But hey, I don’t need fancy boxes if the candy is good and it does its job of keeping the candy fresh & whole. This was fresh, extremely well priced, attractive and for those seeking Kosher marshmallows, it’s just the ticket. 

    If you’re eager to order, there’s a random coupon deal right now if you click on the little logo at the bottom of the home page.

    Related Candies

    1. Elmer’s Toasted Marshmallow Eggs
    2. Little Flower Candy Co
    3. Peeps Monster Mash Ups
    4. Caramel Previews: Mitchell Sweets & Caramoos
    5. Idaho Spud
    6. The Saga of the Valomilk - Review
    Name: Chocolate Covered Marshmallows & Ukrainian and Modern Easter Marshmallow Eggs
      RATING:
    • 10 SUPERB
    • 9 YUMMY
    • 8 TASTY
    • 7 WORTH IT
    • 6 TEMPTING
    • 5 PLEASANT
    • 4 BENIGN
    • 3 UNAPPEALING
    • 2 APPALLING
    • 1 INEDIBLE
    Brand: Pete's Gourmet
    Place Purchased: samples from Pete's Gourmet
    Price: varies
    Size: varies
    Calories per ounce: varies
    Categories: Chocolate, White Chocolate, Marshmallow, United States, Kosher, Easter

    POSTED BY Cybele AT 12:06 pm     Comments (7)

    Monday, March 9, 2009

    Elmer’s Toasted Marshmallow Eggs

    Toasted Marshmallow EggsElmer’s Candy Corp is a very popular and inexpensive brand of boxed chocolates from Louisiana. More recently I’ve been seeing their Valentine’s heart assortments at drug stores and discount chains. For the price I’ve found their candies to be a decent value.

    I also knew that they did Easter candies, though this was the first year I saw them at my stores here on the West Coast. The most famous products are their Gold Brick and Heavenly Hash Eggs, which are still devilishly out of reach.

    What I did find at the Rite Aid was Chocolate Covered Toasted Marshmallow Eggs

    Elmer's Toasted Marshmallow EggsThe candies are sold in a tray of six individually wrapped chocolate marshmallow eggs.

    The cartoon rabbits on the package are the product of Jim Benton, part of the It’s Happy Bunny (tm) series. (Official website here.)

    Inside the tray the little packages come in either pink or powder blue mylar and have a different saying on them:

  • I can’t stop the adorable.
  • You’d be cooler if you were me.
  • I’m not spoiled. I deserve all my stuff.
  • Each little marshmallow is about two and a half inches long.

    Elmer's Toasted Marshmallow EggsThey’re quite nice looking, especially for the price (I got my tray on sale for $1.50). The chocolate ripples on the top and for the most part they were in good shape. A few were cracked, but the marshmallow just seemed to seal any fissures. I was afraid they’d be like the Melster ones I got a couple of years ago, but the ingredients here looked decent. More importantly, these smelled sweet and toasty.

    The marshmallow here is rather like what you’d get if you just toasted a real marshmallow, it’s very soft, almost runny. The chocolate shell is soft as well, but at least it doesn’t flake off. The marshmallow center has a strong single note vanilla flavor (like fake vanilla extract) but then there’s a second component that’s a little toasted sugar flavor.

    The very soft texture of the marshmallow is a little different from other more foamy Easter concoctions, but it’s very smooth (no grain). I ate half of the candies in the package and was overall pleased with them but ultimately they’re too sweet for me to just eat without something to balance it. The little bunnies and their quips on the package was a nice change and would be a fun item to give to friends or pop in your kid’s lunch box. Each egg is about 80 calories.

    Related Candies

    1. Bubu Lubu
    2. Hiding Eggs
    3. Princess Marshmallow Eggs
    4. Peeps Mash Ups
    5. Cadbury Canadian Creme Eggs
    6. See’s Scotchmallow Eggs
    7. Cadbury Eggs: Creme & Caramel
    Name: Toasted Marshmallow Eggs
      RATING:
    • 10 SUPERB
    • 9 YUMMY
    • 8 TASTY
    • 7 WORTH IT
    • 6 TEMPTING
    • 5 PLEASANT
    • 4 BENIGN
    • 3 UNAPPEALING
    • 2 APPALLING
    • 1 INEDIBLE
    Brand: Elmer's Candy Corp.
    Place Purchased: RiteAid (Glendale)
    Price: $1.50
    Size: 4.5 ounces
    Calories per ounce: 107
    Categories: Chocolate, Marshmallow, United States, Easter

    POSTED BY Cybele AT 8:06 am     Comments (7)

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