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October 2014
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Nuts

Nov
19



Reese's Minis Chopped Nuts Package

Now this is interesting, isn’t it? It’s Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups (RPBC for short!) minis with chopped nuts. Another one of my random grocery store finds, and I had to get them. I admit, I was interested to see how they managed to get bits of chopped nuts into the minis. They’re small enough to begin with. This also seems like a pretty pathetic attempt on Hershey’s part to introduce a totally unnecessary variety twist on a classic.

I’m curious as to why they’d do this to the candy. More peanut flavor? New texture? I’m skeptical. I like RPBC to get a nutty flavor, yet no debris in my teeth. We’ll see how this goes down.

 

Reese's Minis Chopped Nuts (cup)

On the outside, these looks the same to the normal mini RPBC: size, smell, shape, flavor. Taking a bite it’s immediately apparent what this is like. This is the chunky peanut butter version to the normal “smooth” peanut butter of the normal ones. It’s just that simple. The flavor of the chocolate and peanut butter center is exactly the same, so I don’t feel like I need to re hash what that’s like. So if you’re a crunchy peanut butter person (survey says 40% of you prefer crunchy to smooth) then give these a go. It’s your favorite peanut butter texture now in your favorite peanut butter cup!

Theses are good product, yet extremely unnecessary in my mind. Only worth getting if you’re very OCD about your peanut butter texture.

Rating:Will Eat Again

 

Will Eat Again

Links:
Reese’s Website


Nov
18



Peanut M&Ms Package (Indiana Jones)

I never understood the appeal of these. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a big fan of the M&Ms line. I just, never learned to love the Peanut variety.

These are one of the candies I remember best from my childhood. I didn’t eat them, though. These were a “must have” for family car trips and my whole family loved them except me. I always made a stink about it and therefore I got my own stash of Plain ones to have to myself. I hated the egg-like shape of them, the less chocolate and the garish yellow package. And the thing that really killed it for me? The nuts always managed to get stuck in my teeth, and I hated it. Therefore a lifetime of picky chocolate eating was born.

Now, realize that this is just my opinion that’s been built up with traumatic childhood experiences and personal preferences. It’s obvious that Peanut M&Ms are a quality product and are loved by practically everyone but myself. That’s part of what I find so interesting about candy.

 

Peanut M&Ms (Indiana Jones)

These are large, in face they’re largest of all the M&Ms. The vary slightly in size and shape, since each is coating a fresh peanut. There’s a really satisfying crunch with these, first with the shell and second with the peanut. The flavor is more peanut focused than chocolate, which is why I think I didn’t like them very much as a kid. I wanted the chocolate baby! The peanuts have a very fresh and nutty flavor with a slightly saltiness that works well with the sweetness of the chocolate. There’s also a toasty flavor to the peanuts that I don’t get anywhere else, and it’s something I associate only with peanut M&Ms.

 

Dark Peanut M&Ms

The dark chocolate variety is only slighty different from the regular milk chocolate one. The package has bands of purple on the top and bottom, so it’s easy to spot the difference on the shelves. The flavor is the same, just less sweet from the darker chocolate.

I don’t see these replacing my preference for Plain and Peanut Butter M&Ms, but I have made peace with them now after a long and silent treatment since childhood.

Rating: Might Eat Again

 

Might Eat Again

Links:
M&Ms Website


Nov
17



El Lobo Package

I’ve always been a fan of Torrone even though I haven’t been able to eat it with great frequency. It was always a treat that was in my household during Christmas, and only because my Dad is crazy for the stuff. He’s recieve a few bars as a gift and would be gone by the end of the day. I’d always be offered some, and as the years went by I grew to appreciate it more and more.

Now, the kind I’m referring to here in the Italian style torrone that’s made up of honey, sugar, eggs whites and nuts and is similar to a nougat. It can be fluffy or on the harder side, depending on what the maker had in mind. It really didn’t matter to me in the end, they all tasted good.

Now when I saw this bar I was immediately taken aback, because it’s labeled as a torrone, but it didn’t look like what I typically was familiar with. It looked more like a nut brittle than a torrone, so I was immensely interested. It’s also from Spain, so I was egar to see how the recipe changed to a different country. I nabbed the bar and did some researching once I was back home. I found a retailer for the El Lobo company, and this is the description on the website:

 

“El Lobo is a delicious almond and honey turrón candy by the makers of 1880. These candies are 50% smaller than the premium 1880 brand, and have a simpler recipe, which means you can enjoy real D.O. certified Spanish turrón at a less premium price.”

I can supplement that with:

 

“Incomparable Marcona almonds make up over 65% of this ‘suprema’ quality gourmet bar - the most that can be added before the bars start to fall apart! This ‘suprema’ quality gourmet bar is similar to traditional turrón except that it is made from caramelized sugar and whole fresh (unroasted) almonds, rather than honey and egg white of the traditional turrón.
The almonds are bound together with delicious dark caramel and sandwiched with super thin wafer. Truly the finest in the world. Made by hand in Alicante, Spain.”

What I bought was the almond brittle variety. The candy is gorgeous! The supermodel of candies. It has beautiful whole almonds, perfectly round and well shaped. They’re covered in a thick, slightly sticky hard sugar syrup, which gives them a dark roasted color, much like oil on well tanned skin. On the bottom there’s a light wafer to keep it from sticking to anything.

It feels heavy and well formed. The first bite took some working to break off, as I was trying to cleave off a bite without breaking the whole thing and hurting my teeth.

 

El Lobo II

Oh, YUM! You get the wonderful, roasted nutty flavors of the whole almonds, a sweet, rich honey like flavor from teh syrup, and a good wafer-like blandness that keeps it from being overly sweet. This is good. On top of that the texture is great as the syrup is chewy and crispy at the same time. The almonds have a good meaty chew and it’s just stellar. My only complaint is that it sticks to your teeth a little too much and it’s not fun having to try and pick the pieces out.

Just goes to show that natural and simple can be very, very, very good.

Rating:Will Buy Again

 

Will Buy Again

Links:
Spanish Torrone Produce Website


Nov
05



Boyer Smoothie Package

I’m sure many of you have never heard of Boyer’s Smoothie, as it’s the ignored sibling to the ever popular Mallo Cup. The Smoothie was a creation that Boyer Candy Company made back in the day to ride the popularity of the Mallo Cup. It’s a unique candy, as it’s made of a smooth peanut butter center covered with butterscotch coating.

I was lucky to find a package of Smoothies in a random gas station in Upstate New York on my way to visit my parents. The package is so very dated in it’s design with almost garish colors and bland font. For some reason I find it terribly appealing, because it reminds me of a time when the flavor of a candy was it’s selling point. Not the package design and marketing campaigns. 

Opening the package reveals the two cups, same format as Mallo Cup. They’re yellowish brown in color and I’m reminded of those horrid Reeses’ Inside Out Peanut Butter Cups that came out a few years ago. The Smoothie also comes with those cute cardboard money cards you can collect and save up for prizes. I’m still saving mine up.

 

Boyer Smoothie Package Cup and Money

The butterscotch is very sweet with that strong buttery flavor. The texture a little greasy and therefore slick on the tongue. Like the Mallo Cup it has a bit of texture, but instead of bits of coconut there’s small chopped chunks of peanuts layered in the coating on the top. If I had to liken the taste to something else, I’d say that these tasted like Reese’s Pieces if they were in cup form. I was disappointed with the flavor a little as it’s hard to taste where the butterscotch flavor ends and the peanut butter flavor begins, and vise versa. Last time I ate one of each they tasted very different, so I was of let down by this. Texture was the only tell tale sign I was eating one or the other.

Despite the faults I find with Smoothie, I still liked it. I can’t really explain it, but something about it appeals to me. It’s not something I’d eat regularly, though.

Rating: Will Buy Again

 

Will Buy Again

Links:
Boyer Candy Company Website

 


Oct
22



Peanut Butter Take 5 Package

Since I began expanding my candy horizons for the past couple of years I’ve been finding some interesting new favorites amongst the zillions of options out there. One of these not-so-recent discoveries has been Hershey’s Take 5 bar. In case you’re unfamiliar, it’s a blend of five ingredients (milk chocolate ( or rather, it was once upon a time), caramel, peanuts, pretzel and peanut butter) so you get the ultimate sweet and salty candy experience.

So imagine my curiosity when I spotted the Peanut Butter Take 5. The package description the only difference is that the milk chocolate is gone (warning #1) and is replaces with “peanut butter candy”. They don’t specifically say what that exactly is. Granted, this was late year (yes, my notes do run that far back), but that doesn’t mean that Hershey’s won’t ever revive this limited edition.

Peanut Butter Take 5

Here’s what the bars look like one the packaging is removed. Don’t you love the advertising for Kissables on the back card? Anyways, you can now see the “peanut butter candy” is really a peanut butter coating that replaced the chocolate.

The taste is not where it should be. The loss of the chocolate really delivers a big blow. It doesn’t have that nice sweetness to balance the saltiness anymore. The coating doesn’t impart anything new except a strange greasy feeling in your mouth. There really is too much peanut butter in this and destroys the balance that was so perfect in the original. In this case, don’t mess with perfection Hersheys. Mmm, kay?

Rating: Not Worth It

Not Worth It

Links:
Hershey’s Take 5 Webpage


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