As for me, I am a candy addict. You probably didn't know this about me. I hide it from everyone. I've hid it from my husband for 3 years now.
I LOVE CANDY.
Phew, it feels good to get that off my chest.
I feel like a bit of a fraud, because most of the time, I make everything we eat from scratch. Of course I make our desserts, but also I make dinners for two. I soak my own beans to cook from scratch, I make my own bread, and I skip the middle aisles of the grocery with the processed foods. HOWEVER, I always hit the candy aisle.
I think my candy obsession stems from the fact that I was never allowed to have it as a kid. Like, ever. It was never in our house. I think it was a very good thing, though, and I'm not complaining about my Mom (because Lord knows I'd never complain about my Mama!). However, the first time I had to study for finals in college, I discovered that candy surpasses coffee in the energy department. Sugar officially had me in her grips.
Now that you know a little more about me, let's get serious about it. If you and I were on our 87th date, I would tell you my candy preferences. So, here goes: I'm always going to gravitate towards fruity candy, with a special soft spot for gummies. And the occasional sour, too. World Market carries a type of Haribo gummy bears that are made with real fruit juice, and I basically hit them up once a month, if you know what I mean.
Speaking of the once a month "candy run", I do like a few types of chocolate candy (especially the ones mentioned in my Caramel Brownies recipe).
This year, you guys, this year is a good year for Valentine's Day candy. I raided Target on January 1 and again a week later to see if the stock had changed.
Here's all the good stuff I found!
Reese's white chocolate hearts I forgot to mention that my favorite kind of chocolate is white chocolate. I know, I know you're rolling your eyes at me. But somewhere between white chocolate peanut butter heart number six and seven, I just stopped caring what you think of me. These white chocolate hearts are my dream come true. Now if I could just get my husband to stop putting the bag in the freezer, I would have life-long happiness.
Dove Dark Chocolate Hearts I'd like a chance to say that I do love dark chocolate. It has its place in my life, maybe three times a year, if it's lucky. I blame these Dove hearts for starting my holiday candy addiction. My Mom sent me a Valentine's Day care package one year when I was in my mid-20s (and still single while all my friends were gettin' hitched), and she put these hearts in the box. I couldn't believe how good they were. You're going to say 'they're not real dark chocolate.' And I'm gonna say 'gimme dat.'
Black Forest Organic Conversation Hearts If you asked me last week how I felt about brands of conversation hearts other than Brach's, I would have said 'garbage.' But I bought these anyway because I think Black Forest makes some decent gummy bears. I'm scared to say how much I love these. I actually like them more than Brach's because they're softer. And the whole bag doesn't wreak of the white peppermint ones. Even though I love Brach's, I throw away all the white and pink hearts. But all of these hearts are good! You should use a bag to make my Conversation Heart Ice Cream.
Swedish Fish Hearts I don't know if this is the first year Swedish fish have come in heart shapes, but I know that my Valentine's Day is forever changed. Gummy candy is my favorite kind of candy, especially sour, but when my tongue is raw, I reach for Swedish fish. They're addicting, and if I don't hide the bag from myself, I can eat an entire one throughout the course of a day. I'm on my second bag for 2017.
This is random, but I was just reading a candy review blog (not a joke), and they described the flavor of Swedish fish as lingonberry with a touch of raspberry and pomegranate. And just like that, folks, I fell in love all over again. With the same candy. Love is like a geyser that keeps renewing its ardor in stop-and-start bursts. Are you tired of me yet?
Gobstoppers Hearts Gosh, I'm obsessed with these. I don't like regular Gobstobbers. I think it was my Mom who bought these one year, and I grabbed a handful before I saw the label. I love these because they change flavors. The white heart is the best, because it changes into a yellow one (yellow and green candy forever, Amen!)
Speaking of yellow candy, I'm looking to start a support group for those of us that miss lemon jolly ranchers. It's not that I hate the blue raspberry ones they replaced them with, but I just can't eat something so blue. It reminds me of how blue my heart is without lemon jolly ranchers.
Sour Patch Kids Hearts The bag is full of red and pink hearts (the pink are better than the red), and while normally, my favorite Kids are yellow and green, I love these sour little hearts. I used them to decorate my Sugar Cookie Bars, and I'm still dreaming about those.
I think it's time for a sour candy revolution in this country. We can do better than sour coating on the outside only. Give me a sour gummy candy that has sourness throughout the entire piece (or give me death!)
Nestle Crunch Valentine Hearts This is where things get interesting. I don't normally like Crunch bars. But heart-shaped Crunch bars? I'm all over these. I think that Crunch bar chocolate has a pronounced coffee flavor to it. And somehow, the shape of the heart allows the coffee aromas to permeate the palate--WAIT, is this is a wine tasting or a $3 bag of chocolate tasting? Reigning it in now.
Sixlets Gotta be honest here. I grabbed these to decorate cookies with, and it confirmed my suspicion: Sixlets taste like cheap M&Ms. The chocolate shell is thinner, and the chocolate inside feels more airy and light. While I normally love all things Canadian, this is a big fat 'no' for me. But if I had to choose between all the lovely Sixlet-eating Canadians in my life and a life without Canadians, I would eat sixteen thousand six hundred and sixteen sixlets. That's how much I love Canada. (But you can keep your candy on the other side of the border).
Hershey's White Cookie Cupcake Kisses Ok, these are my wild card. I grabbed these thinking I would totally hate them. Cupcake flavored white chocolate? With pink crunchies sprinkled throughout? There are so many things wrong with this fusion candy hot mess. But you know what? I love them. I'm not sure why they're called both 'white cookie' and 'cupcake' (and why does a cookie have to be white?), but I don't care. I'm too busy eating them...and making plans for the little papers that say 'cupcake' on them.
The one type of Valentine's Day candy that I love and look forward to every year are sour cherry balls. However, I haven't been able to find them in years! I saw one bag at the hardware store last year (and seriously, who buys candy at the hardware store? How old is it, really?), and I didn't buy them. I've been thinking about it ever since. I'm sure my husband loves that I can't remember anything about the movie we watched last night, but I remember that one time I went to the hardware store and didn't buy a bag of candy. Self-centeredness is one of my many charms.
Anything by Ghirardelli Any type of little square they want to put in a foil wrapper and stuff with stuff is A-OK with me. I didn't grab any yet this year, because I know my Mom is preparing her annual Valentine's Day candy care package (now you see where my self-centeredness comes from: I was loved far too much as a child), and I'm hoping she packs the raspberry ones in there.
Okay okay, tell me: do you love candy? What is your favorite kind? And yes, I have a PO Box address that I can give you if you want to send me some.