Thursday, August 20, 2009

Big Tex Giant Jelly Beans

Giant Jelly BeansI’ve heard about these giant jelly beans they grow down in Texas. They’re made by Judson-Atkinson Candies, which makes the popular Cherry Sours (not my favorite, but they do come in tangerine in the assorted mix) but are pretty hard to find.

I stumbled across this smart little half pound bag at Robitailles Fine Candies and carefully selected a bag that had all the colors. It was hard because there were only about 24 in the bag and seven colors.

You might think looking at that bag that it’s tiny or light, but these quantum singularities of sucrose are hefty. The bag might have been slightly bigger than a 3x5 card but then remember ... a half a pound! So if you’re looking for something to put in a sock instead of a roll of quarter when beating that guy who refuses to pay up on those bad debts ... this is the candy.

Giant Jelly Bean

The photo above really doesn’t give the scale. They’re about an inch and a half long, but the picture makes them look like teensy licorice pastels.

So when I was shooting them, I though, I’ll put something in there for scale. For some reason instead of a coin or M&M, I went with my finger (because they’re about the size of the top two knuckles of my index finger). But then I remembered after looking at the photo ... my fingers are abnormal ... and not a very attractive addition to Candy Blog. (You can view it here.)

Giant Jelly BeanThey come in seven flavors. The first I tried was orange, which is not a good flavor to try if you wanted to establish whether these were spice flavored or fruit flavored, as orange is often in both.

The Orange jelly bean is very crunchy and hard on the outside. The interesting aspect here is that it’s apparent that the jelly center is flavored. (Many regular pectin-style beans are not - the flavor is in the innermost layer of the shell.)

So the next flavor I tried was Cherry Red. This was, in fact cherry. It’s a soft and medicinal flavor, not tangy, just sweet but with a little cherry blossom note to it. I hated it.

Black Licorice is pretty intense. The anise flavor is light & bright but has a lingering burning sensation that builds up over the several bites that it takes to consume it. It lacks the deeper woodsy licorice notes but it’s still rather nice. The food coloring makes my tongue green/black and leaves a bitter aftertaste.

Purple Grape might be more vile than Cherry. It’s bitter and floral and insanely sweet.

Lemon Yellow is quite zesty which helps to balance out the sugary grain to the shell.

White Vanilla was confusing at first. I thought maybe it was coconut but then I realized that it wasn’t even vanilla, just kind of unflavored. But I was grateful for the break from food coloring.

Pink Strawberry tasted rather like bubblegum at first ... and may actually be bubble gum flavor for all I know. It was sweet and bitter and reminded me of bad childhood friendships.

I think there’s also a green one, but I didn’t get that in my mix.

The citrus ones were passably interesting. I have to say that they’re much better than the Hiding Eggs, but I wouldn’t call that a recommendation. I liked the novelty of the size and enjoyed feeling like a giant for a little while. But the intense crunchy shell (which is very much like the Easter marshmallow eggs) didn’t really do much more than add crunch & extra sugar instead of some flavor.

So this just goes to show that the proportions of modern jelly beans (both the Pectin Bean size and the chic Jelly Belly size) are optimal.

Related Candies

  1. Spree Jelly Beans
  2. Big Bite Gummy Bear
  3. EveryBurger
  4. Gimbal’s Gourmet Jelly Beans
  5. Wonka Nerds Jelly Beans
  6. Gummi Lightning Bugs
  7. Starburst and Jelly Belly Jelly Beans
Name: Big Tex Jelly Beans
    RATING:
  • 10 SUPERB
  • 9 YUMMY
  • 8 TASTY
  • 7 WORTH IT
  • 6 TEMPTING
  • 5 PLEASANT
  • 4 BENIGN
  • 3 UNAPPEALING
  • 2 APPALLING
  • 1 INEDIBLE
Brand: Judson-Atkinson Candies
Place Purchased: Robitaille's Fine Candies (Carpenteria, CA)
Price: $2.38
Size: 7.7 ounces
Calories per ounce: unknown
Categories: Jelly, United States, Lake Champlain, Kosher

POSTED BY Cybele AT 9:40 am Tracker Pixel for Entry    

Comments
  1. These are great. There is also a cinnamon-only version which is a lot like HUGE hot tamales that has a great kick. I think you would like those as well.

    Comment by Louis Gray on 8/20/09 at 10:38 am #
  2. dammmm!

    Comment by dawn on 8/20/09 at 12:21 pm #
  3. I had the same finger problem when I was on vacation in France. I used my boyfriend’s finger as a reference to show how giant the fresh shrimp were, forgetting that he has ginormous man-hands, so they just looked normal.

    Comment by Rosa on 8/20/09 at 2:55 pm #
  4. *stereotypical accent* I’m Texan, and we just call those jelly beans. Just kidding! Actually we call them jumbo jelly beans. In fact, I’ve never seen them with the name ‘Texas’ in it. I like ‘em!

    P.S. Your finger isn’t abnormal; it looks exactly like mine.

    Comment by Adriana on 8/21/09 at 1:17 pm #
  5. I guess you have to really like jelly beans to give these a go.

    Comment by Pam Walter on 8/22/09 at 3:58 am #
  6. I grew up in Texas and I have always hated these.  The flavors are far too intense and linger for too long.  Blech!

    Comment by lukekul on 8/23/09 at 2:26 pm #
  7. These are in just about every souvenir shop in every Texas airport. They always look like they’ve been sitting there awhile, so I wonder if freshness has something to do with it.

    But yes, these are all about the novelty of of being big like Texas.

    Comment by Sally on 8/29/09 at 7:33 am #

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