Saturday, March 10, 2012

Old Time Candy Part 2

This Saturday Sacrament returns to that huge "Chocolate Lovers Box" from Old Time Candy.  There will be two more featured reviews to follow but today we're going to focus on 10 more candy bars from the collection that I hope some of you, Sisters and Brothers, will have a few comments about.  Our first foray into this four part review talked about the purpose of this shop but today I want to let you know about the packaging of the candy.  This was minimally packed with the box itself wrapped in plastic but then the candy bars took up all the space in the box.  The shipping box had Earth Aware air pillows holding the box and cushioning it; these are made rom "at least 95% Pre-consumer recycled material" that you can see in this photo.

Today I'm being aided by our main Chocolate Coconut Acolyte as she reviews three of the ten bars we're looking at.  These three in fact: Almond Joy, Mallow Cup, and Cup O'Gold.  Two of these I've heard of and two of these she heard of -- the same two. Neither of us was familiar with the Cup O'Gold from Hoffman's so I'm looking forward to learning more about that one in particular.The words in italics below are from her, our Chocolate Coconut Acolyte, I've only changed the fonts and added in her own photos as well as some historical information.

Cup O' Gold bar measures 2.5" across and 1" thick. The filling is like marshmallow cream with coconut mixed in but it's not a liquid as the picture on the wrapper would lead you to believe. The combination of milk chocolate, cream and coconut makes for a very sweet bar.  Cup O'Gold is a product from the 1950s, originally created by the Hoffman Company and now distributed by Adams & Brooks.  Information about the the Hoffman Company and the original Cup O'Gold is stretchy therefore I can't give further information.   If anyone has sources I couldn't find, please let me know.

Mallo Cup is very similar to the Cup O' Gold but is slightly smaller, measuring 1.75" across and only 0.5" thick. The filling is a little more dry and there's only a hint of coconut flavor/texture.  Mallo Cup was introduced in the late 1930s where it became the most notable treat offered by Boyer Brothers, Inc.  Today, Boyer Candies, operated by Consolidated Brands, offers two varieties of Mallo Cups, the original in milk chocolate and a dark version as well.  The principal ingredient is marshmallow not coconut so I'm even surprised that our Acolyte could taste it but the coconut is right there on the label.

Almond Joy measures 2.5" long by 1" wide by .75" thick. Usually I prefer dark chocolate with my coconut to offset the sweetness, but in this case, I don't mind it so much as the Almond Joy filling isn't as sweet as most coconut confections.  It's also the one with the most coconut presence of any of these three.  I usually don't like nuts in my chocolate as I don't like to mix sweet and salty flavors. However, the almond is a very mild flavor and doesn't compete heavily for the flavor in this bar.  Almond Joy candy bars were brought to the market in 1946 but the history the chocolate and coconut candy bars goes back to 1919 when the Peter Paul Manufacturing Company created the first bar they called "Konabar."  This idea sparked the "Mounds" (1921) and then the "Almond Joy" bars.  In 1978, Peter Paul merged with Cadbury Schwepps;  this merged group was then bought out by Hershey in 1988.

Our Chocolate Fruit Acolyte also gave me a hand with these three candy bars: Raisinets, Chunky, and Cherry Mash.  The last one neither of us have heard of before.  Two have raisins, relatively inexpensive fruit and the other should have cherry but lets see if it does.  The words in italics below are from her, our Chocolate Fruit Acolyte, I've only changed the fonts and added in her own photos.

Hailing from St. Joseph, Missouri, Chase's Cherry Mash hit America's candy scene in 1918. Unassuming milk chocolate mixed liberally with Maraschino cherries. The initial whiff of cocoa is immediately overwhelmed by the powerful cherry scent. The peanuts provide a coarse texture, something for the crumbly chocolate to cling to, giving this strong fruity sweet a surprisingly gentle cocoa finish. According to their website, Cherry Mash is the third oldest candy bar in the U.S. and even has its own song. The 135 year old Chase Candy Company continues to operate as an independent business supplying treats that - while only regionally famous - are now available world wide. Definitely worth a taste if you haven't heard of them before (not being from the central midwest, I had not).

My favorite film-watching candy, bar none. These sweet little nuggets of chocolate have barely any scent at all, owing to the confectioner's resin that gives each piece a shiny gloss and prevents them from melting all over your salty fingers in the movie theater. The California raisins within are surprisingly tart and chewy, no doubt a calculated move to satisfy all the tastebud highlights when consumed with movie-style popcorn: sweet, sour, and salty. Created in 1927 by Blumenthal Brothers Chocolate Company, they are now distributed by Nestle and are the corporation's third best selling confection in the U.S. The chocolate itself is a slightly grainy milk variety; nothing too complex to detract from the plump raisin goodness. The tart fruit is the take-away flavor here, mellowed only slightly by the milk chocolate.

A relative newcomer to the world of popular American chocolates, the Chunky was born in the 1930s. Created by Philip Silvershein in New York, the bar was marketed through Wrigleys (the gum company) and eventually snapped up by Nestle in 1984. Chunky was my personal favorite candy bar for many years and I still crave it now and then. The thick volume of chocolate is part of the attraction; it's heavy, it's powerful, it's serious indulgence. You know you're biting deep into something delicious rather than nibbling a little cracker-thin slip of chocolate. This milk chocolate trapezoid has a syrupy scent, reminiscent of dark rum. The star feature is the chocolate: dense, sweet, and easily gnawed into shards that melt in your mouth. Studded throughout are fat raisins, less tart than the Raisinet fruits, and smooth chunks of peanuts. The original bar featured Brazil nuts and cashews; wish I could have tasted it then! The raisins and peanuts still provide enough foil to keep a mouthful of chocolate from being texturally overwhelming while still making the Chunky bar a rich experience to savor. They may be out of fashion in our ever-downsizing world, but I love Chunky bars and I always will. There, I said it.

All of their hard work means that I only have four more candy bars to reveal to you today, Sisters and Brothers.  For Part 1 of this four part feature on Old Time Candy I randomly selected 10 bars but this time I picked four more that continued some of the trends above -- two individually bagged treats, a treat I'd never heard of before, and an old favorite of mine.

We'll start with the Goobers, roasted peanuts covered by milk chocolate.  The individual bag is 1.38oz and the label brags this has "5 grams of protein," the same amount of saturated fat by the way.  1.38oz in this case is 46 peanuts, some of them doubled up and held together by the milk chocolate.  Obviously these are crunchy but also the roasted peanut flavor is the final flavor though the chocolate is the initial burst you get.  These are not salty at all so it tasted a lot like a peanut butter with chocolate added to it.  It is made with both cocoa mass and cocoa butter so this is the real deal and for a mass produced candy it had a lot fewer added ingredients and preservatives than I thought it might.  I discovered the Goobers were introduced to the USA in 1925 by the Blumenthal Chocolate Company, a Philadelphia based family company started in 1911 by two brothers.  Many of their creations became and continue to be movie theater treats; that is how I know Goobers.  Nestlé makes the candy today after acquiring the mother company in 1984.

Oh, KitKat, someone wrote a song about you and we are working on an interview with that songwriter and musician but today you are my old favorite for this review.  The precursor to this well-known candy bar was created in London and the South East by Rowntree in 1935.  After a few name changes, KitKat was born after World War II.  Since 1988 it has been produced by Nestlé, licensed by Hershey, but still in the Rowntree factory; how's that for multinational candy.  We have the original variety of milk chocolate over wafers however if you look at the ingredients this only lists chocolate not cocoa butter so it is much less of our Sacred Substance than other candy bars have been; a fact confirmed by the very weak chocolate scent. Regardless I still like snapping the sections apart and crunchy down on it but this really isn't enough chocolate to fully satisfy, it's mostly the sugar and wafers you want if you go for this treat.

You might have guessed when I showed you the photo of the four candy bars I was going to reveal that the m&m's would be my old time favorite.  Actually I've always found m&m's to be more candy shell tasting than chocolate so while I might eat them if someone had them out, I'd not buy them for my own use unless I was baking with them.  m&m's is an example of two chocolate families coming together to make one new candy bar; the name comes from the Mars heir who joined forces with Hershey's Murrie to create these candy coated milk chocolates, introduced to the market in 1941.  This collaboration between Mars and Hershey used the Hershey chocolate, an important consideration Hershey's power in the chocolate ration of the period.  Yup, even chocolate was strictly rationed as were all things in most of the world as it prepared for or were all ready involved in what we now call World War II.  They sacrificed for war back then, they didn't have the luxury of cheap or wide selection as we do today even when we have two or three war fronts.  But I digress, sorry, Sisters and Brothers.  These m&m's do have chocolate mass and cocoa butter so it is real chocolate; the sweet candy shell overwhelms purely from the amount of it.  This 1.69oz individual bag has 57 pieces in it in red, blue, green, yellow, orange, and brown.  I don't know about you but when I eat them, I eat by color since it doesn't taste like chocolate any way.

Finally we turn to a candy bar I have never heard of before: Nut Goodie from Pearson's, the company that originally created it in 1912.  This may seem similar to the Bun Bar we looked at last time because it is the same company.  Pearson's actually was acquired in 2011 by the Brynwood Partners VI, L.P., the fifth company to acquire Pearson's, but they continue to use the Pearson name for their candies just as the previous owners have.  Profits over the years have risen and fallen but a return to original recipes seem to have made the difference in the mind of consumers who are buying these treats once more especially in the midwest.  The Nut Goodie is milk chocolate (made from chocolate liquor and cocoa butter), peanuts, with some soy and artificial maple flavoring.  The bar began as 2oz but now is only 1.75oz; such downsizing is very common with candy bars since people resist paying more when cocoa prices rise.  The maple flavor is in soft nougat sort of filling you can see in the photo, the peanuts are halved and over the top, while the entire thing is covered in milk chocolate.  The peanuts and milk chocolate are the starting flavors but the maple becomes stronger with each chew until it is the final essence you can taste.  Slightly sticky and crunchy, this is a lot of variety in texture as well as flavor.  It could be more chocolaty however to fully satisfy us here on The Chocolate Cult.

Another 10 chocolate treats available from Old Time Candy.  When was the last time you had any of these, Sisters and Brothers?  Remember use the link below or along the right hand side to check out their selection and you'll also be helping out The Chocolate Cult so we can continue to bring you essays, reports, and reviews.


Guru Uru said...

This is awesome - so many good reviews and pictures :D
A chocolate ream post :)

Choc Chip Uru

TheChocolatePriestess said...

Which do you remember any of these ten from your childhood?

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