31 May 2009

Cocoa Bean Chocolate Co - Irish Honey (Harvey Nichols)

This is another of those bars that I couldn’t resist from Harvey Nichols, and this one came with quite an in depth recommendation from the assistant, despite my fear that the whole bar maybe be a little too sweet.
I like the presentation of this bar, there is something nice about the simple pattern and block of colour on the packaging that makes it appealing and stand out on the shelf. This company have various flavours and each one has similar design, but with a different brightly coloured label. As I purchased another (couple) of bars from this range, you will see what I mean when I write about them.
This is a milk chocolate with 33% cocoa, but still has a really well defined cocoa flavour. The honey element is quite strong, and does make the bar sweet but it wasn’t at all sickly. The chocolate is smooth, soft and melts easily on the tongue, which makes it very easy to eat. The bar is very moreish, and I really enjoyed this chocolate. This is a nicely presented and well put together bar that left me desperately wanting to purchase another! Luckily I have a bar from the same make, flavoured with Lime and Black Pepper, just asking to be opened!

30 May 2009

Fru Carrot Cakes (Sainsbury’s)

After experiencing the rather lovely Gu Tiffin, I was very much looking forward to trying this Fru Carrot Cake (Gu and Fru being made by the same people). Carrot cake isn’t always my first choice for a cake, but it is something that I like.
Like the Gu Tiffin, there is a cardboard tub filled with individually wrapped squares of cake, to keep them fresh. The sponge in each cake is wonderfully moist and soft and in combination with the raisins I really liked the consistency. There are also walnut pieces in the icing which vary the texture nicely too. The taste is just right, the sweetness of the sponge, fruit and carrot is perfectly balanced by the warming spices and the creamy icing. I was very impressed by these cakes, and thoroughly recommend them.

29 May 2009

Baratti E Milano Cioccolato Bianco Finissimo Con Estratta Naturale di Rosa [White Chocolate with Rose] (Harvey Nichols)

Here is another of those naughty purchases I made at Harvey Nichols. Naturally out of all the things I bought, chocolate was quite high on the list. My Italian isn’t too great, but I managed to work out in the shop that this was white chocolate with a rose flavouring and that the bar looked like it would be something special.
I was not wrong, the chocolate is of a very high quality. It is luxuriously soft in texture and not overpowered by any of the extra flavours. The creamy white chocolate is a great base for this flavouring. The rose is light sweet and floral, and there is also a fruity undertone mixed in which really perfects this bar. Rose isn’t to everyone’s taste, but this bar isn’t just for Turkish Delight fans. I would recommend giving it a go if you are a white chocolate enthusiast, the flavours are so well combined it would be hard to dislike it.

28 May 2009

Violet Crumble [Australia] (Harvey Nichols)

Last Saturday Selfridges (Birmingham) was closed, and I took my first ever trip to Harvey Nichols, obviously I headed straight for the foodhall. It was smaller than I expected, but filled with many interesting items, and I spent far too much money. The fruits of this trip will be showcased on here over the next week or so!
This was the only chocolate bar I could find that looked like a regular big brand bar that I hadn’t tried before, it is a Nestle bar from Australia. When I opened the packet I was expecting a violet flavoured Crunchie bar, and was surprised that I couldn’t smell anything that resembled Parma Violets. In taste there is also no violet flavour, so I have no explanation for the name.
The flavour of the filling does has that wonderful cinder toffee taste, and I think it just has an extra note of honey when compared to a standard Crunchie bar. Really though the bar is almost identical to the Crunchie bar, except this bar is crisper and breaks more easily. I remember writing about some Australian bars I had as a gift from CyberCandy, and many of them crack and crumble too and aren’t soft like British bars. The slogan on the packet states: “It’s the way it shatters that matters” and I have to say I do like the crispy texture that it has. It is nicer and smoother to eat.

27 May 2009

Antonio Federici Panna Cotta (Sainsbury’s)

As much as I love wild and interesting flavours, there is a lot to be said for a really simple flavour done well. I chose this ice cream as one of my favourite desserts is Panna Cotta, so a Panna Cotta flavoured ice cream sounded heavenly.
The first thing to note was that it is was very thick and difficult to serve. It is quite a strange consistency, it appears gloopy and stringy (in a melted cheese way) when you try to spoon it out of the tub, but when eaten it is smooth and feels just a little thicker than regular ice cream. The flavour was satisfactory, but it didn’t win me over. It is pleasant, and I felt it was rather like an overly sweet vanilla. I didn’t feel it had any distinct creamy Panna Cotta taste or caramel flavour. I think perhaps it would go well with a raspberry coulis in order to enhance the flavour.

26 May 2009

Cadbury’s Dairy Milk Tiffin (TheIrishShop.co.uk)

Having had Gu Tiffin the other day I had a few conversations all about Tiffin and its various forms. Some were about Tiffin cakes, and some were about the bar of chocolate that used to be made by Fry’s. After some research, I discovered that after Fry’s and Cadbury’s merged this bar, although not stocked in England, was available in Ireland. I managed to find an importer (TheIrishShop.co.uk), I placed an order, and can report that I had a wonderfully fast delivery and my Tiffin bar was with me.
The bar is smaller than you might imagine from the picture, it is not a large size Dairy Milk at all, it is actually a 54g bar, I understand this is standard in Ireland. I love the packaging as the bar is foil wrapped and then wrapped with a paper label, like bars used to be!
In taste the Dairy Milk tastes slightly different to English Dairy Milk. I was wary about writing this as a Dairy Milk expert who was tasting it with me assured me it tasted the same, but I am convinced it was subtly different. I felt that it had a slightly stronger cocoa flavour and was slightly thicker in consistency when it melted on the tongue. I would be interested to hear from anyone who has tried Irish and English Dairy Milk and their thoughts on the comparison.
The chocolate was packed with biscuits and raisins, as per the traditional Fry’s bar, and these blended well with the Dairy Milk flavour as they added some sweetness and lovely texture. I really enjoyed the bar, and can’t really understand why it isn’t available in England. Biscuit and raisin mixed with chocolate just seems such an obvious combination and it is tastes so right.

25 May 2009

Mayan Mystica Magnum (Sainsbury’s)

Wow – we have had serious sunshine this weekend. I had a wonderful barbecue, and what better summery dessert is there after such a feast than an ice cream? I think this is my first ice cream of the year (on a stick). I choose the new Mayan flavoured Magnum. It is essentially a milk chocolate flavour sweet, creamy ice cream with a shell of milk chocolate with a gentle hint of spices. I picked up on cinnamon and nutmeg within the chocolate, but they are quite mild. Personally I would have liked a hint of chilli mixed in, and a formula that was a little heavier on the spices to seem truly Mayan to me. Still perhaps the majority of purchasers would prefer this milder version? The box does state ‘delicate spices’ so I shouldn’t complain.
The thing about Magnums ‘s when you open one, and you first bite in and crack the chocolate and reveal the creamy ice cream, it is hard to go wrong after that point.

24 May 2009

Route 29 - Peanut Butter Sticks (TK Maxx)

Recently I had a bit of a tip-off that TK Maxx stocked quite a few interesting food products from around the world and that I should take a look. Well obviously I headed on over and this caught my eye. Regular readers will know about my love of peanut butter, so how could I resist this wonderful item when I saw it.
The packaging is a little strange though as it is designed to look a little like a cigarette packet, and it even has a joke warning on the side of the box about the chocolate being habit forming! I’m not sure this is one hundred percent politically correct for a confectionary, but whatever. This product is from the States by the way, the home of the chocolate and peanut butter mix. The nut filling was full of flavour, like a solid peanut butter. The sticks were crunchy but not hard enough to shatter, and the milk chocolate coating was fairly thick. As you can imagine I absolutely loved these, the two flavours work so well together. I do hope that I can find these regularly in TK Maxx, but something tells me their stock might vary week by week.

23 May 2009

Gű Choc Tiffins (Sainsbury’s)

Gu are famed for luscious desserts and have widened their product range to now include a selection of cakes. First for me to try is Chocolate Tiffin cakes, but to be honest it was hard to decide which to eat as I also purchased carrot cake and chocolate brownies.
This cake consists of a soft moist spongy base with lots of nuts and biscuits packed into it. On top of this is a thick layer of sticky caramel with a wonderful full flavour, and finally on top of that is a thin layer of dark chocolate that cracks when you bite it. There are so many flavours and textures in this cake that just work so well together it becomes a complete pleasure to eat. The cakes are individually wrapped, and are quite small which works really well as they are quite a rich treat!
Just for the record these cakes are found in the fridge section of the supermarket, in case you thought from the packaging that these might be located in the bakery section.

22 May 2009

Snapz Crunchy Carrot Chips (Sainsbury’s)

Having tried the Cassava Root crisps a few days ago, I thought I would continue my adventures in root vegetable crisps. I decided to purchase these carrot chips, as this vegetable seemed to be a particularly easy way in.
The chips are small and a rather lovely shade of orange and are seasoned with paprika. I like carrots, I really do, but unfortunately after trying these I discovered that I don’t like carrot crisps. They are a little too sweet and the paprika is a bit over powering. The whole mixture of flavours just felt a bit sickly to me, sweet carrot and spicy paprika was not a combination I liked. I know it goes against the ethos of the product, but I do really think some salt would help. I will have to try some root vegetables that are a little less sweet and see how I get on with those.

21 May 2009

Panda Liquorice

I just had a lovely email from the nice folks at Panda Liquorice after I wrote about their new variety Cool and Fresh , and from that email I just wanted to let you all know about a couple of websites.
Firstly there is a facebook group for liquorice fans available here: http://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Land-of-Licorice/58934566422?ref=nf
Most excitingly there is a competition being run at this website: http://www.landoflicorice.co.uk/
which gives you the opportunity to win ipods and other goodies (just click Play). You have to stack liquorice, and believe me, it is harder than it looks!

Homestyle Two-Bite Brownies (Selfridges)

This is another American product from Selfridges. To be honest when I opened the packet I wasn’t that impressed by what I saw. Inside the bag were mini muffin shaped cakes with a flat top. In fact the tops of each cake look sunken and shrivelled, and not at all attractive.
I will put aside my judgement of the appearance, and tell you about the taste. When I bit in my opinion on this cake changed remarkably, from apathetic all the way to enthusiastic. The sponge is soft, and moist and the chocolate flavour is rich, they are absolutely gorgeous! I was very impressed by the Brownies, and should learn not to judge a book by its cover! Unlike their name, I took three bites to eat mine. The other person testing them with me took one bite, so I guess on average “Two-Bite Brownies” is a statistically acceptable name too!

20 May 2009

Orion - Kocici Jazycky (Czech Republic)

Like the Snickers Cruncher, this is another item brought back from Prague by a couple of friends. When I first saw the item, I couldn’t work out what would be inside the packet. I assumed that the kittens on the front were just a marketing gimmick to make you think ‘cute’ rather than anything else. It was only when I opened the box did everything click.

The chocolates are “Langue de Chat” which translates to Cat’s Tongues. Sure enough I looked up ‘Kocici Jazycky’ and that does indeed translate to Cat’s Tongues. I can offer you no explanation for the name of this chocolate, except that I used to see them in old fashioned chocolate shops. In fact Terry’s used to make a very smart box of chocolate called ‘1767’ which had all sorts of interesting choccies in them, including “Langue de Chat”.
The name only refers to the shape of the chocolate, and I would like to take this opportunity to reassure everyone no kittens were hurt during the making of this item. The chocolates are a little like chocolate spoons with a cat embossed at either end and are quite thin. This means that the chocolate snaps quite satisfyingly if you try to break one in half. The chocolate itself is very sweet and creamy, and nicely met my chocolate craving. It was so lovely to have these and reminisce about other brands that made similar items too. Thanks again to the people that sent them.

19 May 2009

Joseph Banks [Cassava Root] Vegetable Chips Chilli and Lime(Morrison’s)

It is unusual to see a bag of crisps labelled as ‘chips’ here in a UK supermarket. This variety is American in origin, and it is also made from Cassava Root. I have to be honest, and confess that that at the time of purchase I had no idea what Cassava Root was. A little research later and I discovered that it is the same root vegetable as used in Tapioca pudding.
The ‘chips’ themselves are similar in colour to potato crisps, but they are thinner and crispier. I liked the crunchy texture, but couldn’t identify a strong flavour from the root vegetable. As for the added flavourings of Chilli and Lime, it was pleasant enough, and I enjoyed the light hint of citrus. One thing though, and I have mentioned this before on similar products, I was disappointed by the mildness of the chilli, it only just registered as having any heat. I would welcome trying another flavour in this range, as I can see the potential of using Cassava Root in this way.

18 May 2009

Snickers Cruncher (Czech Republic)

This was brought back for me by a couple of friends visiting Prague, and is a type of Snickers that I haven’t seen before. I was very excited to see that this particular version is a peanut special. There is no soft nougat, just peanuts in caramel. I am a big peanut fan, so naturally was very excited about this chocolate bar.
Tucking in there is a lovely crunch, which obviously influenced the name! I thought this bar was a big success, and loved every bit of it. The chocolate coating is of the usual Snickers quality, and the peanuts in caramel are fantastic, chewy and crunchy. It is a peanut lover’s dream bar, and I really do wish that it was available in the UK. Come on Snickers let’s see this bar more widely available. Thanks again to the people that sent it, I really do appreciate it, it is so nice to try different things from around the world.

17 May 2009

Panda Licorice Cool and Fresh (Home Bargains)

Panda liquorice is becoming more and more popular. I remember a time when you had to go to health food shops in order to find it. These days I regularly see it at supermarkets, bargain shops and even in my local garden centre!
They have a new flavour labelled as ‘Cool and Fresh’ and on the packet it doesn’t quite explain if this is achieved by adding menthol, mint or some other special ingredient, but there is more than one way to find out!
When I opened the bag I was surprised to see that each piece was a lot smaller than I expected. As I have previously had the bars of Panda I was expecting chunky pieces. Each strip is thin and quite small, but at least there are plenty of them! Tucking in I found that the texture was as expected, softer than some other varieties, but not overly soft. In flavour there is a good rich taste of liquorice, and it is indeed followed by coolness in the mouth. The secret ingredient I think is menthol, not usually one of my favourite things, but it does go remarkably well with liquorice it seems. They remind me of a mild version of Mighty Imps, hands up everyone who remembers those!?!

16 May 2009

Junior Mints (Selfridges)

I was reliably informed by someone in Selfridges that these are the only boxed mint product for sale in their shop. If they only stock one variety, here is hoping it is a good one!
They are round soft mints with a layer of dark chocolate on them. The chocolate isn’t anything to write home about, and these sweets aren’t the kind of product to brag about cocoa content.
It does however deliver the necessary chocolate flavour; it coats a suitably fantastic soft mint and together the combination of flavours just work. There is an absolutely wonderful peppermint hit from these sweets, and because of that I found them moreish and yummy. They aren’t over strong, and the mint is also sweet and zingy. These might not be for the chocolate connoisseur, but still a treat if you are looking for a refreshing mint.

15 May 2009

Taste The Difference Devon Farmhouse Coffee Dairy Ice Cream (Sainsbury’s)

I just love watching the new products appear in the freezer section, all the new ice cream products remind me that Summer is on its way. I am cunningly ignoring the rain drizzling through the window that I can see as I type.
This ice cream is thick and creamy, but the most notable thing is the flavouring. Unlike many coffee ice creams that I have tried before this doesn’t have a mild subtle flavour. It has a full flavour, rather like a zingy sweet latte. The flavours have a nice creamy sweet aftertaste that follows and mellows the experience. I really liked it and thought that it was blended well. It is now my coffee ice cream of choice.

14 May 2009

New Zealand Manuka Honey (Selfridges)

I bought this item blind as I knew nothing of Manuka honey. At the till though the assistant kindly filled me in on Manuka honeys and how they are often found in health food shops and rated for strength.
When I got it home I did about a bit of research and found that Manuka was code for Tea Tree and I have to confess alarm bells sounded – Tea Tree is not one of my favourite things.
The honey itself is thick, gloopy but smooth. In flavour the honey does have a strong taste, but there is a very definite other non honey flavour, which I wasn’t keen on. This extra taste is somewhere between cough medicine and antiseptic. It isn’t completely overpowering, and I’m quite okay with finishing the jar, but I didn’t like it enough to want to repurchase the item. My research did also discover all the health benefits that come with Manuka honey and that it widely used as in alternative medicine, but I just wanted something to spread on my toast!

13 May 2009

Poppets Raisin Vs Cadbury’s Raisins

When Cadburys created the new product Cadbury’s Raisins (chocolate coated raisins) they must have known that it wasn’t as innovative as it could have been. I decided to put them to the taste test against another leading chocolate coated raisin provider, Poppets.
I asked an assistant to give me a chocolate coated raisin from each brand, and not let me know which packet they came from. The raisins in both are juicy and full of flavour, and about the same size. The chocolate on either was acceptable, and of a comparable thickness, perhaps fractionally thicker on the second sample I was given. The first sample had a very slight powdery edge to the chocolate but the overall taste was similar to the second sample. I discovered that I thought both items were very similar and that it was hard to tell them apart.
It turns out the second sample I had with the very slightly better chocolate was Cadburys and the first was Poppets. In conclusion then there isn’t much difference in the taste test, so I would make my future choice based on portion size, i.e. a small snack equates to a box Poppets or for a sharing portion a bigger bag from Cadburys.

12 May 2009

Twinings Swiss Chocolate Drink (Sainsbury’s)

It seems like it has been a while since I last wrote about any hot chocolate, in fact last time was when I was disappointed by Cadbury’s Hot Choc Chunks.
Twinings are famed for tea, so it is strange to see their brand on a tub of hot chocolate. However they do make rather nice tea and I am hoping the quality will also be present in this purchase. The drink itself is made with hot milk, and there are three to four spoons of powder for each mug. I went with four spoons worth as I prefer a stronger flavour! The drink is quite dark when it is made up and smells pleasantly sweet.

In texture it is smooth, but not overly creamy, although I didn’t use whole milk to mix it up. The flavour has a well defined cocoa taste and a sweetness that follows. In fact it makes a very nice sweet chocolaty drink. I have to say I rather enjoyed this and it felt like a proper treat and it fulfilled my chocolate craving.

11 May 2009

Tango (Home Bargains)

No folks, my photograph is not upside down. This is Tango’s new packaging! They were dared to print upside down cans by the nice people from Bragster and they agreed to the challenge.
This is not a review as such, just a mention that if you think the cans have been stacked wrongly in the supermarket, you may want to take a second look.

Colman’s O.K. Sauce (Selfridges)

I wasn’t sure whether to purchase this as I am aware that it is a type of ‘brown sauce’ and I am not much of a brown sauce type of person. However, I chose to buy this as I found the product quite curious. It was for sale in Selfridge’s foodhall, with products from around the world and yet is, as it proudly declares on the bottle, a sauce from Norwich. Also I have not seen it in the supermarkets in the UK despite the royal approval logo and the bottle also has a Chinese (?) translation prominently on the front. So I felt compelled to buy the item.
Enough of my curiosity and on to the sauce itself, in smell it does very much remind me of HP sauce. However in taste it was a much easier going flavour, heavy on the fruity aspect of brown sauce. As brown sauces go, this had enough sweet tomato in it to make this the nicest that I have tried. I would like to put in a disclaimer though that proper brown sauce fans may feel the sauce lacks the authentic bite.
Finally, I feel obliged to mention the numerous ‘jokes’ (and I use that term loosely) this sauce caused.
“Do you like the sauce?”
“It’s O.K” etc etc.

10 May 2009

Walkers SunBites [Wholegrain snacks] Sun Ripened Sweet Chilli (Sainsbury’s)

I have to admit to not really having tried the SunBites range from Walkers, but there is something about the phrase ‘New Flavour’ emblazoned on the packaging that made me purchase some. Recently I seem to have been writing about quite a few chilli related items, so I guess this will fit in with the theme.
The crisps themselves (surprisingly) aren’t really thicker than ordinary crisps, as I had been expecting. As you tuck in they have a light crunch and the texture of the crisps come together and do feel quite wholesome. The flavour is sweet and reminded me of stuffed peppers. A nice defined vegetable flavour with some extra spices too. The taste is strong and good, but the chilli is lacking, it is on the bottom rung of the chilli heat ladder.
Overall a tasty crisp, but if you are looking for a proper heat hit may I suggest you give Seabrook Hot and Spicy crisps a go instead.

9 May 2009

Frijj [The Simpson’s Limited Edition] Cookie Dough Flavour Milkshake (Sainsbury’s)

Frijj do tend to make rather yummy thick milkshakes, and so when I saw this new variety I hurriedly purchased some. Cookie Dough is an interesting idea for a milkshake and not a flavour I had seen before. Generally I think my favourite flavour of milkshake is probably vanilla, so I had high hopes for this product.
I’m not sure how Cookie Dough is really supposed to taste, but when I opened the bottle the first thing I noticed was a strong smell of caramel. In taste too caramel seems to be the major flavour, and I don’t think a label of ‘caramel milkshake’ would be too far from the mark. The funny thing with this shake is that despite thoroughly enjoying it at first, further in I found it a little sickly and a struggle to finish. I put this down to the flavour perhaps being caramel and something else that I wasn’t so keen on. I can’t quite put my finger on what the other flavour is but one of the people tasting it with me thought egg, but not in a sulphur way. I suspect egg would be fair enough given it is supposed to be Cookie Dough, but I wasn’t keen. I found that the extra flavour creates an after taste that appears subtle at first but by the end was too distracting and a little rich.

8 May 2009

Rachel’s Organic Divine Dessert Milk Chocolate (Waitrose)

I do have quite a liking for chocolate yoghurt. I acknowledge that it doesn’t chocolaty in the way that you may expect it too, but there is something about the flavour that I like. I really Missed Muller Chocolate yoghurt when it was discontinued, but more recently have been enjoying Muller Vanilla and Chocolate.
This caught my eye in Waitrose, and I just had to give it a try. There is a pot of chocolate yoghurt, and some Belgian milk chocolate curls to mix in too. The yoghurt element is thick and creamy, and has that flavour I so enjoy. It tastes of milk chocolate but at the same time has a slightly tart edge as but is also creamy. It’s hard to describe, but is similar to the Muller version I remember. Of course there were also chocolate curls to mix in with this dessert which added a nice texture and an extra hit of chocolate. Perfect if you are in the chocolate yoghurt lovers camp, but if you are expecting liquid chocolate in the pot you will be disappointed.

7 May 2009

Walkers Reveal the Winner

For those of you that have been following the Do Us A Flavour competition Walkers have been running, they have finally revealed the winning crisp flavour.

And the winner is:
The Builder’s Breakfast

I have to confess to being a little disappointed, I had set my hopes on Fish & Chips!

Seabrook Hot and Spicy Crisps Oriental Peking Ribs (Waitrose)

Well I seem to be continuing yesterday’s spicy theme with another product that has a kick to it. Seabrook’s are a brand that are well established in Yorkshire, and now seem to be becoming more available across the whole of the UK. In fact quite recently I found some rather lovely Ketchup flavoured crisps by the same brand. I have had my eyes open for Seabrook’s Hot & Spicy range since I spotted Katie mentioning them on her blog, and they now seem to have made it to the Midlands. On the front of the packet these crisps rate themselves as a two out of three chillies for heat. They have a lovely barbecue sweet flavour that almost tastes a little like plum sauce. There is quite a kick to these too, it isn’t horribly overwhelming but there is a punch. The heat does linger for a few minutes afterwards too. The flavour is zingy, sweet and hot, it does what it says on the packet. If you are into spicy snacks, these should be on your shopping list. They are wonderfully moreish, and I look forward to hunting down the other flavours in the range, Wasabi and Two Chilli.

6 May 2009

Hot Tabasco Habanero Sauce (Selfridges)

I was persuaded to purchase this hot version of Tabasco sauce to write about at the same time as the Smoked Tabasco Sauce from a few days ago. Obviously this was going to be an experience for the taste buds as I was of the opinion that Tabasco sauce was quite hot enough without any extra heat!
I decided it would be good to try it with cheese on toast as a direct comparison to the previous sauce I reviewed. This version is more like regular Tabasco sauce in consistency as it is quite watery. I was so careful to air caution before trying this and I splashed one (very) small droplet onto my fork, and tucked in. First thing first, the sauce is very hot. I had a brief taste of grilled cheese, followed by the sour taste of Tabasco and then a warmth that developed into a heat. What surprised me was that it was enjoyable as it still had proper flavour that swept through my mouth and didn’t just burn. The heat is not for the faint hearted though, and to be honest I didn’t have very much. One person tasting it with me who ate far larger amounts of the sauce commented later that they thought their tongue had gone numb, so - you have been warned.

5 May 2009

Haagen-Dazs Ice Cream Smoothie: Raspberry and Summer Berries (Morrison’s)

I wouldn’t necessary think of mixing sorbet and ice cream, I usually go for one or the other, but Haagen-Dazs’s idea for summer is to blend the two.
When I opened the tub, I discovered that the sorbet and the ice cream were swirled together. The ice cream was a light pinkish purple colour and the sorbet a bright pink, and they looked very tempting in the tub. The ice cream element tasted mainly of blueberries and was very creamy and mellow, where as the sorbet consisted of a sweet and sharp raspberry taste. Each of the two flavours would work perfectly on their own, but I thoroughly enjoyed the combination. The ability to mix creamy and zingy flavours really worked for me, and I am looking forward to trying the other variety of Mango and Apricot.

4 May 2009

Lakeland Bake – Just Square Crumpets (Morrison’s)

Crumpets, as I’m sure you are aware, can having many toppings, from plain butter, through to jams/preserves and even cheese and marmite. One thing that usually remains constant though is the shape – they are generally round. When I saw these I was intrigued by the square shape, and as I can’t resist a novelty thought I would give them a purchase.
I was surprised that the website from the manufacturer doesn’t seem to mention any reasons or any advantages for the shape. I found one though, they are so much easier to get out of the toaster (I have a toaster designed to toast bagels and crumpets and even so I find crumpets difficult to remove as they roll and you can’t grab a corner).
The crumpets themselves are lovely and of a very good quality. They have a good strong flavour and a lovely fluffy texture, and they are just as tasty with a little butter as they are with any fancy topping. A unique and clever product that I thoroughly enjoyed!

3 May 2009

Lotus Caramelised Biscuits with Chocolate (Morrison’s)

Lotus Caramelised biscuits have been one of my favourite biscuits for a long time, so when I heard the news that they had a new edition to their range I just had to hunt them down.
If you have never had a Lotus biscuit before, then they are a thin rich brittle biscuit that have a wonderful strong caramel flavour with a hint of cinnamon.
This new product consists of the regular caramelised biscuits but with one side coated in dark chocolate. The packaging on these is also different to the usual packet as these come in snack packs of three biscuits.
The idea of adding chocolate to these biscuits is pure genius. The warm spice and sweet caramel mingles perfectly with the bitter sweet chocolate. These are my new favourite biscuit, they taste gorgeous and are a perfect accompaniment to coffee. I don’t live particularly near to Morrison’s unfortunately, but I am now happy to drive that little bit further just to get these.

2 May 2009

Fox’s - Payne’s Poppets Choc Chip Cookie (available at Morrisons)

I love Poppets and was very excited to hear about the launch of a new product in their range. It will sit alongside the rather lovely mint, raisin and toffee varieties, and introduce a new texture to their collection. So this new Poppet is filled with a chocolate chip cookie centre. The first thing I did when I got my mitts on them was to bite one in half and have a look at the appearance of the filling. I can confirm it does indeed have mini chocolate chips set in a biscuit, as per the picture, and it is really appealing.
Tucking in I discovered that this product is all about the crunchy texture. The biscuit has a mild flavour, and the chocolate is creamy and sweet, but it really is all about the packet making a nice munch. I am reliably informed that these will be more wildly available from June (e.g. at Tesco’s and the Co-Op), and I do recommended giving them a try. Many thanks to Fox’s for sending me the sample.

1 May 2009

Kshocolât Little Black Box Cocoa Dusted Coffee Beans (House of Fraser)

This is from the same selection of chocolates as the Kshocolât Mintettes I wrote about a few days ago, and were purchased at the same time. The product is designed to give a quick chocolate fix from a convenient small box.
Essentially the contents consist of coffee beans coated in a rich dark chocolate and then dusted in cocoa. These choccies are absolutely lovely. The coffee bean offers the perfect coffee hit, and texture wise adds a nice crunch. The dark chocolate has a strong flavour and is of a good quality, and most importantly has a generously proportioned layer. The cocoa dusting adds a nice touch and my only complaint is that the box just isn’t big enough.