Archive for the ‘Candy News’ Category
Our latest guest writer deserves a grander-than-usual introduction. Kate Hopkins is the celebrated author of the book Sweet Tooth: The Bittersweet History of Candy, released this year by St. Martin’s Press. A few weeks back, we asked her to write a bit about her new book, as well as share her perspective on candy. Never one to miss a chance to talk about candy, she took us up on the offer.
There is a “thing” about candy which most of us fans are aware of, but to which we rarely put words. In the course of my travels in writing the book, I believe that I’ve been able to come up with some of the reasons why confections resonate with us.
For one, it is, at its heart, a treat. There’s no nutritional value of note for the regular consumption of candy, making it one of the few foods out there that makes it an affordable luxury item. When we look at candy, we’re not thinking “I was thinking I needed to get my daily allowance of carbohydrates and Antioxidants.” No, we’re thinking “Oooo…caramel with marshmallow! I need to have some of that!”
And for those brief few minutes that we consume the candy, we’re separated from the moment. Whatever stresses we may have had, whatever worries we may have been carrying with us, are temporarily put aside. Yes, life may be difficult, but it’s made less so knowing that there’s chocolate- coated peanut butter out there.
Secondly, it’s nostalgic. While scientists may focus on the components of the candy bar, they ignore what are not there – the memories that come with them. Every fan of candy that I’ve talked with has a story that transports them to their youth, whether it’s the piece of candy that their grandfather would “sneak” to them, or the baseball coach who gave little leaguers Bazooka Joe before taking the playing field, everyone who loves candy has a memory surrounding it that they treasure. Nostalgia is a powerful motivator, and a romantic one at that. Eating candy is its own time machine, transporting us back, however briefly, to when we were seven years old, and nothing was more important that the day we had a dollar in our pocket and the permission to buy our own treat.
A few years ago, we were disappointed to learn that Fudgie Wudgie fudge would no longer be available. This line of creamy, decadent fudge had been a huge hit with our customers for as long as we’d been able to offer it.
Well, the good times are back again. We’re delighted to announce that Fudgie Wudgie Fudge is again available at CandyFavorites.com! The company is under new management, and their fudge is better than ever.
High Quality Small-Batch Fudge
Fudge Wudgie Fudge is manufactured in Pittsburgh, PA, and made to order using the finest all-natural ingredients. The best part is that we get shipments on an “as needed” basis, allowing us to ship the freshest fudge directly to your door!
Fudgie Wudgie has been hand crafting premium fudge and chocolate since 1983. They prepare their recipes from scratch, using the freshest cream and butter from local creameries and ingredients that are not overly processed.
Order Online Today!
Click on the Fudgie Wudgie logo at the top of the page and browse our selection. It includes their best-selling flavors, as well as treats for those with the most discerning tastes. All varieties of Fudgie Wudgie Fudge ship in a solid one-pound block and are packaged in a beautiful gift box perfect for giving.
Every once in a while, we get the opportunity to share something especially great with our customers. Sure, we hook people up with their favorite candies and help them relive childhood moments of sugary bliss. And we get to surprise both kids and adults with prizes in our candy contests. But none of that compares with our one-of-a-kind promotions.
Passing on the Savings
This week (the first week of May, 2012), we get to extend something really special to our loyal customers and all the Brach’s enthusiasts out there — a Brach’s event. We’ve received a huge shipment of Brach’s candies and lowered all our prices to pass the savings on to you.
For a limited time only — while supplies last — you can enjoy the lowest prices ever on classic Brach’s products. Check them out >
We Go Way Back with Brach’s
We’ve always celebrated our long-standing relationship with Brach’s. We began offering Brach’s products in 1929, and we were one of the first candy wholesalers to offer Brach’s famed Pick-A-Mix Candy. Our company even shared our sugar rations with Brach’s during World War II to keep the candy coming!
We were the first online retailer of many Brach’s products, and we continue to offer Butterscotch Disks, Caramel Squares, Ice Blue Mint Coolers, Chocolate Stars, beloved Jelly Nougats, and many more of your all-time favorites.
Earth Day is all about saving, and we think it’s important to save your favorite candies from extinction. Over the years, so many delicious, ingenious candies have gone the way of the dinosaurs. We can’t take our favorite candy for granted, or we may never see it again.
In the spirit of conservation, we’re giving away some great nostalgic candy prizes. It’s our way of spreading the love of retro candies and making sure that future generations get to enjoy the same flavors we savor today.
To enter, share your favorite memory of an already extinct candy. Or tell us about the candy you believe should be saved for posterity. Just leave your story in the comments on this post to enter. We’ll announce the winners early next week!
Don’t forget to do your part for the planet. Buy online to save gas. And always dispose of your wrappers responsibly.
It’s summer in March, the Mayan calendar is ending, and the most famous duo in the history of candy is parting ways. Get ready for an interesting ride from the people who brought you Peeps. Just Born is about to take Mike and Ike (you know, the Mike & Ike) on an outrageous adventure. And you’ll get to learn a lot more about who they are and what they’re all about!
Enough with the chocolate mascots, already. Mike and Ike are real…well…we don’t know what they are. But we do know that they’re real characters — individuals with their own interests, passions, and personalities. While they’ve shared great success in the world of candy, there’s got to be more to life. After all, they’ve been working as a team since 1940. So they’re striking out on separate paths, one in the direction of rock ‘n roll glory, the other to pursue acclaim as an artist.
If upcoming product designs are any indication, we can expect some fun frenemy action from these comical chewy-candy circumstances. As for the specifics, your guess is as good as ours. What will happen to the #1 theater-candy duo in America? Will they ever get back together? Since they’re both Kosher and Gluten free (not to mention yummy), a lot of people would miss these classic candies if they were to disappear forever.
We heard some seriously funny stories about candy, and learned that some candies are more “favorited” than others. Thanks to everyone who entered for submitting such great reviews.
The two reviewers who are each entitled to a $25 Sweet Certificate are:
- Warren W.
To everyone else, the chances to win don’t end here. We’ll be giving away a $10 Sweet Certificate every week to someone who leaves a review of a candy on our site. Just leave a review on any of our 3,000 products and you’ll be entered in the drawing for that week. And bigger, better, more exciting contests are on their way.
This has been our best contest ever. Reading the reasons we should choose each of you to win had us laughing and crying. There were so many great responses that we eventually had to just narrow down the finalists and pick a name at random.
And so, without further ado, the winner is:
Mary Ann Wentzel
We’ve learned a lot about our customers over the past few days. Many of you feel really sentimental about Brach’s candy. Some are fueled by sweets every single day (and nobody’d better get between you and your candy). Those of you who are diabetic are not alone in your love of candy — but be careful! We have a whole section of sugar-free candies in every flavor — even Turtles!
The fact that Candy Favorites customers are the sweetest people on earth definitely shone through. So many people asked to receive the candy so they could pay it forward — to family, ailing friends, the military, or volunteer organizations. We will definitely be hosting more giveaways around here, and with more prizes. Because, after all, you definitely deserve it!
If you have a great idea for a contest, tell us in the comments!
This week, it’s big news that Mars, Inc. will be limiting the portion size of its products to 250 calories or less. The world has begun mourning the death of the King Size Snickers. If you need to stock up before your favorites disappear forever, check out our King Size Candy Bar section.
Some candy bars will get smaller. But this doesn’t necessarily mean only small packs will be available. The word “portion” seems to be important here. Take a King Size Snickers. There are actually three portions in there, but eating them that way isn’t so realistic, especially since those three portions come in the form of two bars. You can expect to see more clearly portioned candies with better saving-for-later potential. Mars has already achieved this by introducing several 2toGo versions of classic candy bars. With modifications like this, the greatest difference could be a psychological one. Some studies have shown that we tend to eat less when our snacks are divided into smaller portions.
What’s the Meaning of This?
Across social media, this downsizing has been met with distrust. Some believe it’s a ploy to avoid proposed taxes on non-nutritional food items. Others insist it’s just another way to charge higher prices for less volume of product. Since we’re not exactly experiencing a Renaissance of corporate trust these days, plenty of theories have been raised as to why King Size candy bars are going away.
Mars is sticking with a more positive message of helping consumers be more healthy. You don’t have to believe them, but reducing portion size is just one of many seemingly well-meaning initiatives going on over at Mars. They have a wide array of goals in the interest of living up to their 5 principles of quality, responsibility, mutuality, efficiency, and freedom. Some changes have already been implemented, and others are on the way. Mars has committed not to advertise to kids younger than 12. They’ve also opted out of selling through elementary-school vending machines, which is pretty cool. And it’s scary to some consumers, but by 2015 Mars will cut the sodium content of all its foods by 25%.
Some Healthy Goals
To take this commitment even further, Mars has developed a three-tiered approach to promoting health and nutrition. Information goals include clear labeling and nutrition information. The company has also developed relationships with a number of nutrition-centric organizations, including some working to end the child obesity epidemic. Portion resizing is part of renovation, which also includes the reduction of trans and saturated fats. And innovation will bring us portion-friendly packaging and healthy new snack products.
Change is in the Air
Mars is leading the pack and making lots of changes in the name of nutrition. But it looks like other companies aren’t far behind them. Many manufacturers, including Hershey and Nestle, have agreed to cut calories and portion sizes by 2016. Whenever a company changes a time-tested product — especially a nostalgic one — they risk losing loyal customers. Sure, all this talk of nutrition could be sugar-coating cuts to counter rising chocolate prices and transportation costs. But with the nutrition challenges facing the U.S., does it matter? Are you cool with the change? Would you rather pay more to get the same products you know and love? Share your perspective in the comments.
When we think of cherry cordials now, we think of chocolate-covered cherries filled with a sweet syrup. However, the cordial reaches a bit farther back than the tasty treats we associate with the holiday season.
The word “cordial” contains the word “cor,” which means “heart” in Latin. As a noun, cordial can mean medicine or medicinal food or drink and the cordial was originally used as a type of medical tonic. Cordials were believed to stimulate the heart and therefore improve circulation.
The medicinal use of the cordial continued until the 1400’s when it arrived in England. They were “taken” after excessive eating to settle the stomach and aide digestion and became known as “surfeit waters.” Not only that but they were considered aphrodisiacs. By the 1700’s cordials were becoming known for their intoxicating effects as well, which probably helped with the aphrodisiac thing (fewer inhibitions, if ya know what I mean).
Around the same time, a confection called griottes popped up in the Franche-Comté. They were made by enclosing long stalked sour griotte cherries in chocolate with a little kirsch. Both the griottes and the cordial traveled to America where adding a bit of the sweet, aromatic, and alcoholic cordial to the chocolate covered fruit seemed like a great idea.
In America, the term cordial was used to describe a particular type of strong liqueur with a distinctive flavor made by crushing whole cherries (including the pits) and steeping them in a sugar syrup with a bit of alcohol. After the mixture was strained, one was left with a sweet, thick, syrupy alcohol with a strong fruity flavor. This type of cordial is intense and very sweet, so it was (and still is) added to something else to make a mixed drink (kind of like grenadine) or sipped in small amounts as a post-dinner beverage.
Liqueur chocolates, like those made in France, became a popular treat and Americans gravitated towards their own special cordial. Cordial candies could be made with other fruits, but cherries were the most popular and continue to be. While they were originally made with liqueur, they are more commonly made with a sugar syrup flavored with cherries, similar to what maraschino cherries are preserved in. The cherries used in the candy are made by pitting and heating the fruit for a short amount of time in the liqueur and storing it in cans or jars. For the alcohol free version, the pitted cherries are cooked in a sugar syrup instead and then jarred.
Cherry cordials are made in one of three ways. The first is shell molding – pouring liquid chocolate into molds to a form a shell. The shell is filled with cordial or sugar syrup and a cherry. Before the shell hardens completely it is plugged up with a small seal of chocolate, which becomes the bottom.
The second method of making chocolate cherries is called enrobing, meaning the centers of the chocolates are run under a curtain of liquid chocolate to form a shell. In order to accomplish this, the syrup is placed in trays made of starch dotted with small impressions. After a while, the syrup will “crust,” or form a layer of sugar crystals, all around its surface. They can be carefully lifted out of the mold and enrobed in chocolate.
Finally, there is a method, which uses a solid filling enrobed in chocolate. An enzyme called invertase is added which acts on solid sugar centers and reverts them to liquid. Adding invertase can be done after the center has been covered in chocolate, simplifying the whole process. Here’s an example of how it’s done. (For the purposes of this example we’re going to use maraschino cherries and the syrup they’re packed in.)
Add invertase to the cherry syrup. Coat each cherry in several layers of powdered sugar and the enriched cherry syrup. Dip each cherry into a chocolate coating making sure it is thick enough that it will not crack and leak any filling. The invertase starts to break down the sugar immediately and continues even after it’s been enrobed in chocolate. It can take several weeks for the sugar to completely dissolve (up to a month).
There are plenty of confectioners that make cherry cordials, but the three most popular are Cella’s, Queen Anne’s, and Brach’s. Cella’s is the oldest brand. They began making cherries in 1864, but didn’t begin large-scale production until 1929. Queen Anne’s began making their chocolate cherries in 1948.
The Brock Candy Company began making cherry cordials in the 1930’s and the tiny treat helped keep the company afloat during the Depression. The cherries remained popular for the next 60 years when a majority stake in the company was bought by E.J. Brach Corporation in 1994. The name of the company was changed to Brach’s and the cherries became one of the largest selling lines of chocolate cherries.
There are other “knock-offs” of cherry cordials from companies like Hershey’s and Mars. Hershey’s produces Hershey’s Kisses Cherry Cordial, which is filled with thick cherry flavored goo. Mars has M&M’s Cherry Cordials, which are just flavored like a cherry cordial.
Let’s be honest, nothing can beat a real chocolate cherry cordial.
Cherry cordials are available in stores mainly during the holiday season and you’ll be hard pressed to find them after the holidays end. Luckily, Candy Favorites stocks them year round, so if you have that craving you know where to go! But you can worry about that later. It’s almost Valentine’s Day and we’ve got Brach’s Cherries all ready to be shipped to you to give to pretty much everyone you know. It’s the perfect Valentine’s Day gift and we want to share it with you.
~ Created by our special guest blogger, Esther of Why’d You Eat That?
Davidson, Alan, and Tom Jaine. “Cherry; Chocolate; Cordial.” The Oxford Companion to Food. 2. ed. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2006. 165; 180; 216. Print.
Day, Ivan. “Rosa Solis.” Historic Food Welcome. Ivan Day, n.d. Web. 7 Feb. 2012. <http://www.historicfood.com/rosolio.htm>.
Dobie, Mark. “Making History Monday: Chocolate Covered Cherries – Sugar Pressure.” Sugar Pressure. sugarpressure dot com, 28 Dec. 2009. Web. 6 Feb. 2012. <http://www.sugarpressure.com/2009/12/making-history-monday-chocolate-covered-cherries.html>.
Kirk, Bryn. “Invertase | Chocolate University Online Blog.” Chocolate University Online has chocolate education for everyone!. Chocolate University Online, 19 Sept. 2010. Web. 6 Feb. 2012. <http://www.chocolateuniversityonline.com/blog/tag/invertase>.
“My Mother’s Chocolate Covered Cherries .” Squidoo : Welcome to Squidoo. N.p., n.d. Web. 7 Feb. 2012. <http://www.squidoo.com/mothers-chocolate-covered-cherries-recipe>.
Larousse Gastronomique: The World’s Greatest Culinary Encyclopedia. New York: Clarkson Potter/Publishers, 2009. 231; 301. Print.
Tabler, Dave. “Appalachian History Â» Chocolate covered cherries for Valentine’s Day? Classic!.” Appalachian History Â» Stories, quotes and anecdotes.. Dave Tabler, 12 Feb. 2010. Web. 7 Feb. 2012. <http://www.appalachianhistory.net/2010/02/chocolate-covered-cherries-for.html>.
“What is a Cherry Cordial?.” wiseGEEK: clear answers for common questions. Conjecture Corporation, n.d. Web. 7 Feb. 2012. <http://www.wisegeek.com/what-is-a-cherry-cordial.htm>.
This weekend in our CandyFavorites Newsletter, we gave customers the chance to win the World’s Largest Hershey Bar. It’s a 2-foot-long, 5-pound plank of Hershey’s Original Milk Chocolate.
And the winner is:
Pamela Pollock of Slippery Rock, PA
Don’t miss our future exclusive deals and contests!
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