Archive for the ‘Nostalgic Candy Favorites’ Category
Denture Danger: 6 (It’s sure to get stuck in your teeth)
The Clark Bar is—as it says on the wrapper—“Chocoaltey Coated Peanut Butter Crunch.” I guess you could say this is Necco’s version of the Butterfinger. The filling is slightly different than the Butterfinger, however. The Clark bar has a little soft peanut butter snuck into the crunchy, flakey, filling which adds an extra bit of peanut buttery goodness.
In second grade I had a teacher named Mrs. Clark, naturally, her favorite candy was the Clark bar. I brought in a bag of Clark bars for the class and she took every wrapper and hung them around the bulletin board on the wall. Now Mrs. Clark was an advocate of the Clark bar, but she wasn’t the inventor.
Irish-born, David L. Clark, was a guy just trying to make a living like the rest of us. He went through working at a variety of jobs including at a fish market, an art glass factory, and a paint manufacturer. He founded the Clark Company in 1886 in two rooms of a small house in Allegheny, Pennsylvania, what is now the North Side of Pittsburgh.
The company continued to grow and was soon producing some of the nation’s favorite candies. Clark’s company experimented with ingredients such as coconut, mint, and peanut butter, which had never been used in candies before. Some of the most delicious and most popular of these innovative creations were the Clark bar and the Zagnut bar.
The Zagnut bar is basically the exact same thing as the Clark bar, but instead of the flakey peanut butter being coated in chocolate, it is coated in a sweet coconut shell. I know that there are a lot of people out there who don’t like coconut in their candies, but before you make that claim, try the Zagnut bar. The coconut flavor is far from overwhelming, and incorporates an excellent additional flavor to the crunchy peanut butter.
The Clark Company changed hands quite a bit. It was sold to the Beatrice Food Company in 1955, Leaf Inc. in 1983, renamed to Clark Bar America in 1995, and bought again by New England Confectionary Company (NECCO) in 1999, which is where it thrives today.
I feel like the Clark Bar and the Zagnut bar have declined in popularity in comparison to their cousin, the Butterfinger. I know that I had never even heard of the Zagnut bar until now and I think that is a shame. Not only is this candy an ultimate classic, not only was this candy originally produced in Pittsburgh (my home town), but this candy, along with his brother the Clark bar is absolutely delicious. So next time you are craving a Butterfinger, think back to David Clark and the struggles he must have gone through to create the delicious candy bar that is undoubtedly the candy that influenced the creation of the Butterfinger.
Denture Danger: 10 (if you try and chew it)
It puzzles me to think how a candy marketed as “Jaw Breakers” is and has been so successful. It seems like it would have gone out of business with the cigarette company called “death” and Chevy Nova car in Latin America, which translates to “it doesn’t go.” I think the brand name almost comes off as a challenge to kids. The kids who have managed to have bite into a Jawbuster without breaking their teeth in the process have something to brag about (though I’m sure kids would love brag about how they broke their tooth trying to bite into a jawbreaker, “It didn’t break my jaw like it was supposed to!”).
I am reluctant to call this candy by its name, Jaw Busters because growing up they were always called Jaw Breakers. I think the Jaw Breakers began to go a bit unnoticed (which isn’t surprising considering the danger implied by trying to bite into one) so Ferrara Pan changed the name to “Jaw Busters, the original Jaw Breakers.” They call it the original Jaw Breakers because jawbreakers used to be a generic term thrown around by candy companies as any hard candy and Ferrara Pan took that name and created a product.
Jaw Busters are created with the same rotating pan process as lemon heads and atomic fireballs, but the Jaw Buster process is a little more intense. The process of adding more sugar to the pan is repeated over 100 times in a 14 to 19 day period, which is why this candy isn’t so easy bite into. Don’t try and prove yourself worthy for any reason by attempting to bite into one of these candies because even if you don’t break your jaw, you could hurt your jaw or break a tooth and I don’t think biting into any candy is worth that sacrifice (which is why I don’t know how this candy is still in the market). So, eat at your own risk.
Denture Danger: 2
Also known as a circus peanut, this orange peanut shaped marshmallow became one of the first penny candies after it was introduced in the mid 1800s.
To be honest, I never understood why everyone liked these things so much. Yes they have a good texture, and yes they are a classic, but what I don’t understand is why the peanut shaped marshmallow taste like artificial banana. It just doesn’t make sense.
If you are a fan of marshmallows that taste like bananas, then this candy might be your calling. Unless you are trying to relive memories from the past, this almost sickeningly sweet confectionary won’t leave you very satisfied.
In 1963 man named John Holahan discovered that the shavings of the circus peanut are a delicious addition to breakfast cereal. Mr. Holahan was coincidentally the vice president of General Mills and these marshmallow shavings were the influence to creating the first cereal with marshmallow bits (marbits) and one of everyone’s favorite cereals, Lucky Charms.
For some reason the Lucky Charms marshmallows were created without that banana flavoring. If only the Lucky Charms’ marshmallows were enlarged to the size of the circus peanut… now that would be profitable product.
(You can get them individually wrapped too!)
Brachs Cherry Cordials Do Not Fail to Impress and they give Brachs Villa Cherries a run for their moneyMonday, September 28th, 2009 by Jon
Denture Danger: 4
I have to admit I’m usually not a fan of fruit inside my chocolates. And when I say I’m not a fan, every time I bite into a chocolate with fruit flavored filling, it usually ends up in a gross, slobbery mess inside of a napkin.
I tentatively took my first bite of the cherry cordial expecting the same sickly sweet fruity flavor of most fruit fillings, but I was quite pleasantly surprised. Within the chocolate shell, surrounding the maraschino cherry, is a sweet goopy filling. It has the same consistency of the stretchy, soft caramel in Caramello chocolates. I’m not sure what exactly the filling is, some sort of deliciously sweet, milky substance. Whatever it is, it makes this candy what it is. The milk chocolate blend, with the goopy sweetness, and the fruity cherry creates a perfect trifecta of flavors. This candy is classy too. Place them around the edges of a plate filled with fruit and you can serve that for dessert to Obama at his grand table in the white house.
You might remember Brach’s Christmas time Villa Cherries (I’ll admit that I don’t), which were discontinued in 2003. These may not be the original Villa Cherries that you all knew and loved, but they are new and improved. Whatever those Villa Cherries may have tasted like, I can tell you that these Brach’s Milk Chocolate Covered Cherry Cordials taste even better.
So whether you are going to the Obama’s for dinner, or it’s Christmas(/Chanukah) time, or it’s right now, the cherry cordials’ trifecta of sweetness will leave you with your eyes closed and absentmindedly expressing your satisfaction through the universal “mmmmmm…”
Denture Danger: 7
Not to be confused with the 90’s rock band, lemonheads are a small ball of a hard candy coated in a soft sugary layer that adds the bang to the tang.
The big lemon heads are good, I mean who doesn’t like one of their favorite candies in monster size, but they don’t have the same tang as the small original lemon heads that you get in the concessions box at the movies. It has to do with the ratio of hard candy center to the soft sour outer shell.
The original lemonheads have a perfect ratio that blends well whether you chew it up your let it melt away in your mouth. The big lemon head has a thick sour coating that is delicious, but is gone well before the large ball of candy.
Lemonheads originated in 1962 from the Ferrara Pan Company using the same method used to make Red Hots. The hard candy center is made by mixing and heating sugar and corn syrup, pulling and kneading the dough-like clump of sugar to aerate it, and forming it into a rope that is pressed between two rollers that form the candy balls.
After cooling, the balls are put into the same revolving pan that Ferrara’s atomic fireballs were put into, a process known as the cold panned process. As the candy beads spin around and around corn syrup and sugar are added which gives them a sugary coating that continues to build in layers to form the shell as the pan continues to spin and more ingredients are added.
Through my personal experience I have seen Lemonheads hoarded by kids and I have seen them being shared amongst friends. One little Lemonhead holds the same sweet and sour satisfaction as ten so don’t hesitate to dish out Lemonheads to your envious friends. Approximately 500 million lemonheads are created by the Ferrara Pan Company each year, get out there and eat your share.
Denture Danger: 0
Also known as UFO candy, this candy is back from the 50s. These wafers remind me of what the priest puts on everyone’s tongue at communion. These paperlike bubbles come in blue, orange, white and pink and are filled with multicolored beadlike sugar candy balls.
As soon as you drop the UFO into your mouth you taste the plain styrophoam like disc immediately begin to dissolve. As soon is the seal is broken the alien inhabitants pour out and scatter into your mouth taking over. Without you knowing those little sugar beads posses your mind and before you know it, the aliens have succeeded, and you are eating another one.
The sugar candies in the inside are tasty but if you rip open the pouch and just eat the candies they prove to be a little too sweet. They taste especially good after the cardboard tasting piece of styrophome wafer has touched every taste bud on your tongue. Then again, not much would taste bad after cardboard. They figured out (through many tests I’m sure) that the best taste directly after cardboard is little multicolored sugar balls. Try it out, but it won’t be easy to find something that tastes better after cardboard than the little aliens inside the satellite.
Well, enjoy Satellite Wafers and as you eat them remember that over 50 years ago kids were doing the exact same thing.
Cracker Jacks have been an American icon ever since their introduction in 1893 at the World’s Fair in Chicago. Their name was given by a bystander who said, “That’s a Cracker, Jack” when he had his first taste!
Nineteen (19) years passed and in 1912, the first toy “surprise” was included and this is one of the first examples of a company marketing a “limited” edition” which has become commonplace in the candy industry in the past few year…
1918 was another banner year for branding as Sailor Jack and his beloved mascot Bingo were introduced.
Perhaps the piece of trivia that I find most intriguing is that Cracker Jacks were one of the first products to actively benefit from subtle product placement which has become the norm. Think of ET and Reese’s Pieces or Ronald Reagan and Jelly Bellies and this will give you an idea of where the trend started.
According to Mike Pesca, a correspondent for National Public Radio, the inclusion of the famous lines, “Buy me some peanuts and Cracker Jacks” in the 1908 classic “ Take Me Out to the Ball Game” generates approximately $25 million dollars worth of free advertising!
The boxes have become increasingly difficult to source but, like peanuts, they remain a staple of American summers and long nights at baseball games….
By the way, if you can tell us which rock star mentions Cracker Jacks in one of his songs, please let us know and we will send you a $10 Sweetcertificate!
Are you still searching for Lik-M-Aid?
True candy lovers know that the classic “lick and dip” candy known as Lik-M-Aid was introduced in 1942 and disappeared in the late 1980’s only to reemerge as Fun Dip.
The candy was always intended for dipping but the iconic “dipping stick” known affectionately as Lik-A-Stick was not added until the 1970’s. The actual flavor remains a mystery and a subject of debate.
As for the powdered sugar ,different variations have been introduced throughout the years and they remain similar to what is found in Pixy Sticks which ,ironically, is owned by the same company, Nestle USA, and featured in their Willy Wonka line..
Despite all, one thing is often overlooked and that is that Fun Dip is a candy with an illustrious, close to seventy year (70) old, history. If you look closely at current packaging, you will see that Fun Dip still pays homage to its original namesake as well it should!
Mc Craws Taffy disappeared from the shelves of candy stores about two (2) years ago without explanation. The phone number for the original manufacturer was disconnected and rumors circulated as to whether this classic taffy would ever be available again.
A few months ago, it was announced that the original owners were back in business and candy lovers rejoiced!
Why the fuss you ask?
Mc Craw’s Old Fashioned Taffy Sticks have been a cult item ever since their accidental discovery in 1900. They are colorful, great tasting and oh so retro.
Originally, the company sold popcorn and the taffy was introduced as something to compliment the line. Ironically, as time passed, the fame of the taffy grew and the popcorn business dwindled.
Ironically, when the company changed ownership last year – the original owner sold the company and then repurchased it – they found themselves closed on their hundredth anniversary which is sad as this would have guaranteed them a place in the pantheon of oldest candy manufacturers in the United States.
Regardless, despite this ever so brief hiatus, the box still states that they have been “ticklin’ the taste buds since 1908” and that these taffy sticks are “ lovingly crafted by the fine folks in Farmersville, Texas.”
As the slogan goes, “try to eat a piece without smiling….” We wish you the best of luck in this endeavor….
More than you want to know about a great product
Grether’s Pastilles are perfect for throat dryness associated with colds, flu, overtaxing of the voice, environmental influences like heating and air conditioning, smoking, medications, age-related conditions, etc. The main active ingredient, glycerine, based on vegetable oils, creates a comforting, moisturizing protective coat on the mucous membranes of the mouth and throat. People who stress their vocal cords by speaking a great deal or singing (among them Bill Clinton, Celine Dion and Sting) value the comforting relief given by the unique pastilles
Grether’s Pastilles have not only this soothing effect and an excellent flavor, they also have a remarkable history: the first mention of pastilles made from blackcurrant juice harken back to the 19th century in England, where the family business Allen & Hanbury Ltd, London got the long pastille tradition off to its start. The pastilles were available in Switzerland as early as 1910 under the original name Allenbury’s. In the early 70s, concurrent with the transfer of production from London to Switzerland, the brand was taken over by Doetsch Grether Ltd. Basel and renamed Grether’s Pastilles.
The demanding, time-consuming production process requires special knowledge and experience, and unique production facilities. Some of the ingredients are still ordered from the same suppliers who provided them for the pastilles’s inventor. The most important of these, Agar Agar, which gives pastilles their smoothness, makes mass production impossible. This gelling agent, produced from saltwater algae, must be soaked for many hours and then combined with the remaining ingredients and cooked. This fluid is then be left to settle to release its air. In the meantime, special wooden cases are filled with corn flour. The Grether’s Pastilles moulds, with the typical GP emblem, are pressed into the cornstarch and then filled with the pastille mixture.
During approximately 6 weeks of the first maturing phase, the corn flour soaks up the surplus moisture of the pastilles. When the required firmness is reached, they are separated from the cornstarch, sprayed with steam and dried overnight. They are now ready for the second, several-week long maturing process: the fruity aroma of the pastilles develops in air-conditioned rooms. So that none of the aroma escapes, the surface of the individual pastilles is coated with a tiny bit of beeswax and vegetable oil, which gives them their shine. Following a strict quality control regimen under the supervision of the Swiss Agency for Therapeutic Products, Swissmedic, the Grether’s Pastilles are then packed in their air-permeable packaging, enabling them to breath and mature further to be ready for sale.