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Laffy Taffy and Snickers: Something Funny Going on Here

May 10, 2018 by

I have always said that laughter is the key to anyone’s heart, but is it the key to their stomachs as well? The Willy Wonka Candy Company and Mars Incorporated may have something to say when it comes to that topic. With the creations of Laffy Taffy and Snickers bars, their candies are sure to keep their consumers happy. Although the two candies are completely different, they both offer unique twists on classic candies. So let’s dig in to some flavorful facts.

laffy taffy assortedTaffy or Toffee, depending on where you live, was first brought into light in 1817 when the word was added to the Oxford Dictionary. The place of creation is unknown, but it is somewhere in Europe. By the time the 1870s came around, taffy was in its heyday and people loved it so much that they went as far as to throw taffy pulling parties. Although salt water taffy and Laffy Taffy are fairly soft, it is not the same in Scotland. In Scotland, toffee (known as tablet there) is so hard that it comes with a little metal hammer that is used to break the candies into smaller bits.

Laffy Taffy was first invented in 1971 to accompany the release of the Gene Wilder movie Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. Originally Laffy Taffy was made by the Breaker Confections company until they changed their name to Willy Wonka Brands in 1980. The candies were packaged with bright colored wrappers that always included a joke inside. This was to reinforce the movie’s slightly psychedelic themes. The candy’s name comes simply from its texture and the jokes inside. The company was renamed again in 1993 after becoming a part of the Nestle company, and is now known as the Willy Wonka Candy Company. This reinforces the importance of the imaginary candy factory and its colorful creator, Mr. Wonka himself. The candies started off as a small thick square shape, but over the years developed into the longer thinner rectangles that we know and love today.

laffy taffy strawberryAlthough I had eaten them many times before, I went ahead and ate some of the little candies again in order to help me more accurately describe them. I started off with the Strawberry flavor which came in a bright pink wrapper. First I read the jokes provided to me. I am a sucker for some cheesy jokes, so I really enjoyed this one: What is a Buccaneer? Wait for it… expensive corn! *Crickets*. Anyway, after reading the jokes, I went on to smell my taffy. I like to see if it tastes like it smells, which food and candies often do, but not always. I decided that the Strawberry Laffy Taffy would make a nice candle. After sniffing the candy, I ate it. The Strawberry flavor was especially hard to chew. Otherwise, it tasted like it smelled. It was a bit sour and had a hint of the real strawberry flavor.

laffy taffy bananaThe next one that I tried was banana, which was wrapped nicely in  yellow packaging. As we are all aware, artificial banana flavor is in no way like real bananas. Thinking back to the circus peanuts reviewed in my first blog and the chicks and rabbits reviewed in my Easter blog, we discovered that artificial banana is a hit or miss every time that it is added to a candy. The banana taffy’s smell was a bit overpowering and it came with small hints of vanilla for some unexplained reason. When it comes to Laffy Taffy, the flavor is very similar to that of banana runts, which are also made by the Willy Wonka Candy Company. The banana taffy was a lot easier to chew than the strawberry and it was very smooth. It also just kind of tastes like the color yellow. What is a parasite? This one is pretty obvious… something you see in Paris.

laffy taffy grapeThe third taffy flavor that I tasted was grape and it came in a purple wrapper. Grape has never been one of my favorite flavors, but I am actually okay with it in Laffy Taffy form. When the packaging is first opened, there is a very strong scent that immediately reminded me of Fun Dip, another one of the Wonka company’s creations. The grape flavor was kind of sour, but not too strong in that regard, yet the overall flavor was very bold. Luckily the taffy’s texture was just right in the grape flavor, not to soft and not too hard.

laffy taffy sour appleThe last flavor that I tried was the sour apple flavor in a green package. For some odd reason, I had trouble smelling this flavor. Maybe my nose had too many scents inside of it from the previous flavors, or maybe it just didn’t have a smell. When I put the taffy in my mouth, I found that it was very soft compared to all of the other flavors. Although it was sour apple, the sour part didn’t hit me until later on in my tasting of the candy. When I am eating a sour candy, I like to really experience the sourness- getting that twitching in my eyes and the pucker in my lips. The taffy tasted good anyway though.

Even though each taffy flavor individually tasted great, all the flavors were kind of overpowering, especially when eaten one after another. I would definitely recommend trying Laffy Taffy if you haven’t done so yet. It’s not just a candy that can get stuck in your teeth, it’ll also provide you with some sweet jokes.

  • Shareability: 1               
  • Denture Danger: 10       
  • Convenience: 8        
  • Novelty: 3       
  • Overall: 8

Another silly candy is the Snickers bar. With a slogan like “curb your hunger before your hunger curbs you,” we’ve all been left to wonder what makes this candy so funny. So let’s find out. Snickers bars were created in 1930 by Frank Mars who founded the Mars candy company. He named the flavorful candy after one of his family’s horses. That horse must’ve had a pretty great sense of humor. The candies used to be called “Marathon Bars” in the United Kingdom (not to be confused with the Marathon Bar sold in America from 1973-1981, also by the Mars Company), but since have become known as Snickers all over the world. Currently they are the best selling candy in the world as well as one of the most highly produced, with the Mars company producing about 15 million bars per day. So what makes a Snickers bar so good? Could it be the chocolate, the peanuts, the caramel, or the nougat? Let’s delve into the tasty snack.

Snickers bars have always been a favorite candy of mine, so I was very excited to finally do something with my love for the layered goodness. Of course I started out by smelling the candy, which caused some strange looks from the people around me, but I didn’t mind. The bar had a very strong peanut smell, outshining all of the other ingredients trying to spend some time in the “limelight”. I guess if they wanted to do that they could go join in on the fun in a Jelly Belly bag, which can be found right here.  Anyway, after taking in the scent of the candy, I tasted it, just like the taffy. The candy was very sweet, and much more chocolatey than the smell suggested. It was both crunchy and chewy at the same time, and luckily not too hard even though there were peanuts in the bar. With much concentration, I was able to detect a faint nougat taste, but it would have gone unnoticed had I not been looking for it. I enjoyed the candy anyway, like I always do. All in all, there was a lot going on in the fantastic candies.

  • Shareability: 2               
  • Denture Danger: 8       
  • Convenience: 8       
  • Novelty: 2       
  • Overall: 9

What did one penny say to the other penny? This is a good one… just wait. “Let’s get together and make some sense!” So we can do that too. Laffy Taffy and Snickers bars have one wonderful connection and that is the fact that they are known to provide people with long lasting smiles. With very sweet overpowering flavors, the candies are sure to give both your mouth and your stomach an explosion of joy. In all seriousness though, if you enjoy life and love to laugh, you should check out Laffy Taffy and Snickers right here at candyfavorites.com.

Candy News

A Brach’s Easter Candy Taste Test

March 29, 2018 by

As we all know, Easter is a holiday full of religious symbolism, but it is also a holiday full of candy! After Halloween of course, Easter is the second most popular holiday to indulge in all of your favorite sweets– especially ones that you may not have access to year round. So I decided to check out some of Brach’s Easter candies and see how they compare to the better known Peeps and Cadbury Eggs. I got to delve into some White and Pastel Malt Eggs, Chicks and Rabbits, and Hunt Eggs, none of which I had previously tried.

Easter is a time of rebirth. Easter eggs have been used to symbolize this concept since around the 1200s. There are many kinds of egg shaped candies such as Reeses Cups, Butterfingers, and even M&Ms. Why all these candies are made out of chocolate is beyond me, so let’s just talk about the Malt Eggs, shall we?

Brach’s Fiesta Malt Eggs

brach's fiesta malt eggs

First of all, these candies are peculiarly round for a supposedly egg shaped candy. There is a hard outer shell, containing the crispy wafer inside. The outer shell, depending on the color, can range in amount of flavoring and colors. The pink ones especially have a very bold taste, while the white ones are much calmer. Although they don’t taste all that different, if you really take the time to experience the flavor, you too will notice the slight difference. The inside of the candy is home to first a layer of chocolate, then a layer of what can be considered a large Whopper. All three parts of the candy work extremely well together and I can see why they are such a popular candy for the holiday.

Shareability: 9 Denture Danger: 8 Convenience: 4 Novelty: 5 Overall: 7

Brach’s Marshmallow Hunt Eggs

brach's marshmallow hunt eggsThere are more than just chocolate egg shaped candies. There are chewy flavored candies too. Hunt Eggs are an example of some non-chocolate Easter candies. These eggs come in many flavors such as: orange, lemon, lime, raspberry, vanilla, strawberry, and grape. These candies are said to have a sweet outer coating and a marshmallow center, but after experiencing the candy, I’m going to have to disagree.

The outside of the candy has a similar consistency to Skittles… they can be squished if you try really hard.  The inside, although said to be marshmallow, has a much closer texture to Kinetic Sand. The candy as a whole tastes like the powder that someone can use to dip their Baby Bottle Pop into. All in all, this is not one of my favorite candies, but you should still go ahead and try it because who doesn’t like trying something new? Who knows, maybe you’ll love it.

Shareability: 8 Denture Danger: 6 Convenience: 10 Novelty: 8 Overall: 2

Brach’s Chicks and Rabbits

brach's chicks and rabbitsChicks and Rabbits were the last candies that I ate during this taste testing. They are, basically, a variant of the Circus Peanuts I talked about back in January, during my Most Controversial Candies in America blog. Circus Peanuts are high up on that list. Chicks and Rabbits are in the shapes of, you guessed it… chicks and rabbits, unlike the classic peanuts that come in the shape of…a peanut!

These candies are also considered to be a marshmallow treat, but this one is more like condensed cotton candy. Is it that hard to make a marshmallow correctly? The inside of these candies does have the same look as the Hunt Eggs, but they taste completely different. These have a bitter flavor, while the Hunt Eggs had a much too sweet taste. Chicks and Rabbits are banana flavored and very soft. So even though I am not a fan, I have to give the company credit for creating a candy unlike any others.

Shareability: 8 Denture Danger: 2 Convenience: 7 Novelty: 8 Overall: 6

Easter is one of the best times to fill yourself full of candy, since the next candy filled holiday is not until July. Since the holiday is a time of rebirth, maybe it should also be the time to try new things, perhaps some candies that you have never eaten before. You could eat some Malt Eggs, Hunt Eggs, and Chicks and Rabbits– all good choices if you want to have a very flavorful experience. The best part is that you can buy all of these candies right here at Candyfavorites.com! 

Candy News, Candy Reviews, Lollipops

How Many Licks Does it REALLY Take to Get to the Center of a Tootsie Pop?

February 23, 2018 by

tootsie popHow many licks does it REALLY take to get to the center of a tootsie pop? The world may never know. Right? Who remembers seeing that commercial, the one with the little boy and Mr. Owl? I know I do.

Did you know that the commercial is actually a lot longer than the one we know and love today? The original commercial has the little boy first talk to a cow, then a fox, a turtle, and finally Mr. Owl. After this campaign came out, different groups of people decided to test how many licks it really took. Purdue University, University of Michigan, and Swarthmore Junior High School all did experiments of their own. Purdue found that it took 364 licks for a licking machine that they had built, but 252 licks from some of their volunteers.

On the other hand, Michigan’s licking machine took 411 licks to reach the center. Swarthmore did everything with human tongues, reaching an average of 144 licks. So after reading about all of these fascinating experiments, I decided that I wanted to get in on the fun. I gathered my people, gave them all lollipops, and we were on our way. I expected us to reach an average of about 500 licks per pop, but the results proved otherwise.

tootsie popI enlisted 10 people, myself included, between the ages of 14 and 24, to help me discover how many licks it took to get to the center of the tootsie pop. To advance the experiment, I gave out regular Tootsie Pops, chocolate Tootsie Pops, candy cane Tootsie Pops, and Charms Blow Pops. I gave each person two pops and had them record the number of licks it took to reach the center of each one, while only licking one side of it. Although it may seem fun, the lollipops took a toll on everyone rather quickly.  

My oldest sibling said their headache started around 560 licks on the candy cane Tootsie Pop. They had fun anyway though, saying that they “love that last part getting the remains off the stick, like the last meat from a chicken wing.” The general consensus was that everyone’s tongues hurt and that they all desperately needed water. No one was happy at the end. I got statements from my friends like “it was totally bland”, “the orange became worse at the end”, and “my tongue went numb!” All in all, the experiment was very hard to get through, but I’m glad we did it.

tootsie popTootsie Pops were invented in 1931 by the Tootsie company, who had been producing Tootsie Rolls for many years already. There are a bajillion flavors of Tootsie Pops, including:  cherry, grape, orange, chocolate, raspberry, blue raspberry, strawberry watermelon, lemon, pomegranate, caramel, wild cherry berry, wild apple berry, wild blueberry, wild blackberry, and wild mango berry. Even the Tootsie Pop wrappers have a large variety of things going on on them. There are kids playing tennis, baseball, swimming, and running, but the most special wrappers are the ones with the Native American shooting a star. Although there is nothing actually important about the slightly rare wrappers, it is still fun to make a wish on each shooting star.

tootsie popsSo when the experiment was done, the results were not at all what I expected. The average number of licks it took to get to the center of the regular Tootsie Pop was 678. It took 881 to reach the center of the chocolate Tootsie Pop. To reach the center of the candy cane one, it took about 617 licks. The Charms Blow Pops took 638 licks to reach the center. What makes the chocolate ones take so many more licks? Why were all the others in the 600-700 lick range? Why did anyone even agree to help with this experiment in the first place? So many questions surround Tootsie Pops.

The truth is that each Tootsie Pop and Blow Pop is made differently, so there will never be a definitive answer about how many licks it takes to get to the Tootsie Roll center of the Tootsie Pop. So the world really may never know. If you feel the need to test this yourself or are just craving some sugar on a stick, you can buy Tootsie Pops right here on our site.  Make sure to comment your favorite flavors down below. I hope you have a licktastic day!

Candy History, Candy in Pop Culture, Candy News, Lollipops, Valentine's Candy

Valentine’s Day Is For Candy Lovers

February 9, 2018 by

valentine's dayAs Valentine’s Day is a day of love and candy, I decided to do a little research as to why. We all know that the big Hallmark holidays like Halloween and Valentine’s Day are all about candy, but have you ever thought about why you are stuffing chocolates into your mouth? Ancient Romans were the first ones to start the Valentine’s Day tradition. There were two different Saint Valentines that the holiday was named after.  Every year around mid February, the Romans held an enormous festival called Lupercalia. This contained a feast in which the single young adults ate treats, drank alcohol, got to know each other, and would get married if everything went how the adults hoped it would. But his year to prepare for Valentine’s Day I  gave out some surveys to find out what kinds of candies are everyone’s favorites for the lovely holiday.

My surveys asked people to circle which candies they would most like to eat on Valentine’s Day. The list included: Conversation Hearts, Chocolate Sampler Boxes, Lollipops, Red and White M&Ms, Jelly Hearts, and Chocolate Roses. There was also an ‘other’ section that got answers like Reese’s Cups and Chocolate Pretzels. I was sure that the boxes of chocolate and Conversation Hearts were going to be the most liked candies, but the results that I received proved me wrong. The top three most popular were the Chocolate Sampler Boxes, Lollipops, and the M&Ms. So let’s talk about those.

boxed chocolateA classic example of a chocolate sampler box is the Whitman’s Sampler. Around 1915 it was the best selling box of chocolates in America. Whitman knew a lot about marketing which allowed his company to greatly prosper straight through the Great Depression and World War II. His most memorable (and highly sexist) ad campaign “ A Woman Never Forgets the Man Who Remembers” was what made the company’s profits skyrocket and what is keeping the candies here today. With a wide variety of chocolates in every box such as caramel and strawberry creme, a consumer will always find something to love about these delightful boxes. Even though we don’t carry Whitman chocolates, the gourmet chocolates we feature are quite decadent and delicious!  

lollipops

The history of lollipops is a little fuzzy, but there are lots of ideas of where they came from. If you’re curious, Jon Prince wrote about their history here.  I have always really enjoyed lollipops, in fact my next blog (which will be licktastic) is all about the little candies on a stick. I remember getting them at banks as a kid and watching their transformations there from bland flavors to Dum Dums. I also remember stealing them from my older siblings and eating them because I just couldn’t get enough of their flavorful sugar. On Valentine’s Day, lollipops come in lots of forms. There are basic pink and red ones of course, but the best are the clear heart shaped ones (that can easily be mistaken for soap on a stick). They can be given out to children’s classrooms or given to your loved ones as a small way to show them your affection.

m&m'sM&Ms have been around since 1941 and were created by the Mars candy company. For a long time, consumers had been searching for a chocolate that wouldn’t melt before they got around to eating it and M&Ms were the answer to this problem. In 1954, their famous slogan, “melts in your mouth, not in your hands” was introduced causing their already great chocolate to be even greater. The company slowly put out different colors and flavors of M&Ms, eventually making them America’s favorite candies.

I hope that you’ve learned something about candy this Valentine’s Day. Whether it was the fact that the Whitman’s chocolate company was just a bit sexist or that lollipops are much more popular than expected, there is always something to learn. I would like to keep learning about these candies, so take the poll below and let us know what your favorite Valentine’s Day candy is by submitting your choice in the comments section. Happy holiday!

Choices:

  • Conversation Hearts
  • Chocolate Sampler Boxes
  • Lollipops
  • Red and White M&Ms
  • Jelly Hearts
  • Chocolate Roses
  • Other
Candy Memories, Candy News, Retro Candy

Love ’em or Hate ’em: America’s Controversial Candies

January 22, 2018 by

What comes to mind when you think of the most controversial candies? Do you think of Circus Peanuts, Mary Janes, or Candy Corn? After much research, I have learned that the top three most controversial candies in America are those three. People think of circus peanuts as confections, not even candy, candy corn is one of those candies that you either love or hate, and as for Mary Janes, people say that peanut butter shouldn’t be chewy. But I think there are some really great aspects of these candies that consumers should stop overlooking, so let’s take a deeper look.

Candy cornCandy Corn is a small triangular candy split into 3 different colors: yellow, orange, and white. These bite size pieces really pack a flavor punch though. With their slightly bitter butter flavor, one is normally very intrigued by the sharpness or completely disgusted. It is claimed that a Pennsylvania candy company worker in the 1880s named George Renninger was the creator of the most debated candy in America. He must’ve been very proud of himself. These little nuggets of sweetness are the perfect Halloween treat, but can be eaten year round, and can be used to make some mean art projects.

  • Share-ability: 10
  • Denture Danger: 6
  • Convenience: 5
  • Novelty: 3
  • Overall: 7

Circus peanuts can be described a lot of ways. I’ve heard people say that it is like a hardened banana cotton candy, a puffed air taffy, and a taffy made of foam. These odd little marshmallows are banana flavored and very easily chewed. Circus peanuts started off in the 1800s as penny candies and the inventor is unknown. Although you’d think that because the candies are orange in color, they would be orange in flavor too- the candies are actually that sweet artificial banana flavor that I have always loved. These marshmallow treats are quick dissolving and fast to eat. They are also fat free and don’t leave you with a nasty aftertaste. With all that in mind, just remember that these strange little candies will always give you a lot to talk about.

  • Share-ability: 8
  • Denture Danger: 2
  • Convenience: 7
  • Novelty: 8
  • Overall: 6

Mary JaneMary Jane’s are small tan rectangles that are meant to be chewy, but are actually very difficult to eat. They have a peanut butter and molasses taste which is very evident once they eventually become soft. These little candies were created in 1914 by the Charles Miller company and they were named after the creator’s aunt. After trying these candies, I have really learned to appreciate them. At first I had a hard time getting used to the amount of work that it took to eat them, but after that, I found the flavor to be quite enjoyable. I have always been a peanut butter fan and on the inside there is a bit of the gooey food for consumers to love as well. These are now one of my favorite candies because they are very tasty and have a texture that doesn’t really exist within any other candies.

  • Share-ability: 7
  • Denture Danger: 10
  • Convenience: 8
  • Novelty: 9
  • Overall: 9

So now that you know a little more about these unique, controversial kinds of candies, I hope that you have found a new appreciation for them. Next time you look at Candy Corn, Mary Janes, or Circus Peanuts sitting on a shelf at a store, maybe you’ll pick up a bag and delve into some flavorful adventures. Or you can buy them right here at CandyFavorites.com