“Only Smarties have the answer” – the brand’s slogan in Europe.
- Smarties are food items produced by Nestlé, and are made primarily of chocolate that has been coated in a coloured shell made of sugar and other ingredients.
- Smarties are particularly common in countries such as the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, Spain, Germany, Italy and Netherlands.
- Smarties are circular in shape, and they are like a flat sphere, generally 15 millimetres (0.6 inches) in diameter and approximately 5 mm high.
- Smarties typically come in the eight colours of green, yellow, orange, mauve, red, pink, brown and blue, while the latter has been previously substituted with white.
- Smarties are not commonly found in the United States, as the name has already been trademarked by another company for a candy that looks like a tablet or pill.
- Smarties were invented in 1882 by Rowntree’s of York, an English confectionery company which Nestlé bought in 1988, however, they are no longer manufactured in York, but they are produced in other countries, including Germany, Canada, and Australia.
- Smarties were not named as such until 1937, and they were originally called ‘chocolate beans’, although variations of this former term have been used as names for other brands of similar candy not produced by Nestlé.
- From 2006, Smarties produced in various countries gradually changed from artificial to natural colours, causing blue to be changed to white, until a natural replacement was found.
- Smarties are commonly eaten as a sweet snack, and are sometimes used as a topping with ice-cream, or for decorative baking purposes.
- Smarties can be commercially bought in cylindrical or hexagonal containers, packets, or boxes, or purchased combined with ice-cream, chocolate or other confectionery.
Every event requires a jar of jelly beans.
- Jelly beans are small, brightly coloured confectionery items made mostly of sugar.
- A ‘jelly bean’ is also known as a ‘jellybean’, or a ‘Jelly Belly’, and the latter is named after the popular brand.
- Jelly beans are typically shaped as a bean, with a hard exterior and a softer inside.
- The basis and idea for jelly beans is said to have originated from the traditional confectionery known as ‘Turkish delight’, that is like a firm jelly, as well as ‘Jordan almonds’, that have a hard sugary exterior.
- Jelly beans are believed to have existed as early as the 1860s, and were made by confectioner William Schrafft, from Boston, United States, who suggested they be sent to the soldiers fighting in the American Civil War.
- Jelly beans are typically made of sugar, glucose syrup from corn or wheat, as well as starch, and generally contain flavourings and colourings.
- The 22nd of April is annually celebrated and declared as National Jelly Bean Day.
- Jelly beans come in numerous colours and flavours, and generally a particular colour is associated with a particular flavour.
- In the United States, jelly beans became popular in the early 1900s and became strongly associated with Easter in the 1930s.
- Jelly beans are generally sweet, although they can be purposefully sour, while the Jelly Belly company has over 50 different flavours of the confectionery.
Toasting marshmallows over the campfire, what a traditional thing to do!
- Marshmallows are sweet confectionery food items made primarily of sugar.
- Homemade marshmallow is generally cut into square shaped portions, while commercially manufactured pieces are generally cylindrical in shape, although the shapes can vary.
- Marshmallows were originally made from the root or sap of the mallow plant, Althaea officinalis, a plant that is said to grow near salt marshes, hence the name of the confectionery, and was also commonly used for medicinal purposes.
- Marshmallow is generally coloured white, although other colours can be achieved through food colouring and pink is a popular coloured variety.
- Marshmallows are typically made from sugar and corn starch, although wheat starch is sometimes used, as well as egg or gelatine, which helps to prevent the mixture from collapsing, and flavouring is also often included.
- Marshmallow confectionery, that was made of mallow sap and honey, was invented in Ancient Egypt, and was only available to pharaohs, and it wasn’t until the 1800s that the French invented the fluffy style of confectionery that is now eaten.
- Marshmallows are a sweet snack food that are eaten as is; used as an addition to hot chocolate; are commonly used as an ingredient in other confectionery items, such as rocky road or puffed rice slices or sweets; and are often coated in chocolate.
- Alex Doumak, an inventor from America, invented a marshmallow extruding machine in 1948, that allowed for mass production and ease of process, and it created cylinder shaped confectionery due to the tubes that it passed through.
- Marshmallows are often slightly cooked over campfires or other heat sources, which causes the inside to melt and become gooey.
- Marshmallows contain small amounts of copper, are very high in carbohydrates (sugar) and contain virtually no fat.
Fudge! Well at least these facts aren’t messed up.
- Fudge is a sweet confectionery food item usually with a strong sweet flavour, that is usually eaten in small quantities.
- Fudge is typically made of sugar, butter and milk, and sometimes corn syrup, which slows the crystallisation process, and sometimes chocolate, for flavour.
- Fudge comes in a variety of colours, often coinciding with the various flavours available, and it may contain fruit or nuts.
- Fudge is typically made by heating the ingredients to temperatures of up to 116°C (240°F) and allowing it to partially cool; then beating the mixture until creamy and smooth and pouring it in a pan to set, before cutting.
- Although fudge traditionally has a smooth and creamy texture, it will become brittle or hard if cooked at higher temperatures.
- Fudge can be difficult to master as incorrect crystal sizes, due to imprecise cooking times; temperatures; or cooling processes; can cause more liquid or very hard solid versions of the confectionery.
- The origin of fudge is uncertain, however it is likely a North America invention, possibly prior to 1886; and the first known instance of commercialisation of the product is said to be in 1886 (sold for 40 cents per pound), in Baltimore in the state of Maryland, in the United States.
- The term ‘fudge’ possibly originated from the expression of annoyance typically used when something goes wrong, in this case, when making a confectionery that turned into a different substance than expected.
- Fudge is not very nutritious as it mostly contains large volumes of sugar and a significant portion of fat, although it has a small quantity of manganese and other vitamins and minerals.
- Fudge is commonly presented and sold in the shape of a rectangular block, and is usually available at market stalls or specialty confectionery stores.
Spreadable chocolate and nuts is hazelnut chocolate spread.
- Hazelnut chocolate spread, also known as ‘chocolate spread’, is a cocoa flavoured substance that is typically known by the famous brand name ‘Nutella’.
- Hazelnut chocolate spread typically contains oil, sugar, cocoa, milk powder and hazelnuts, as well as a few other ingredients, and is usually made by extracting the cocoa and processing the hazelnuts, then mixing the items with the other ingredients, into a paste.
- Hazelnut chocolate spread was first invented by Italian confectioner Pietro Ferrero, in Italy’s Piedmont, after World War II, to give people an affordable chocolate treat.
- The first invented hazelnut chocolate spread was originally solid, known as ‘Pasta Gianduja’, which was first sold in 1946, and later altered so that it became spreadable, which was known as ‘Supercrema’ in 1951.
- Hazelnut chocolate spread is commonly used on wheat-based items, such as bread, waffles, crumpets and scones.
- In 1964, ‘Supercrema’ was improved and released as ‘Nutella’, by Michele Ferrero, Pietro’s son, which is the original, and leading hazelnut chocolate spread brand.
- Hazelnut chocolate spread has been previously marketed as a healthy item, due to the healthy hazelnuts, but generally the product actually contains a large quantity of sugar and fat.
- Hazelnut chocolate spread was originally targeted at all ages, but later primarily at children, who are one of the main consumers of the spread.
- Hazelnut chocolate spread is high in fat, sugar, and manganese and is a good source of vitamin E, copper and iron.
- Although hazelnut chocolate spread originated in Italy, it entered the market in the United States of America in 1983, and it is now sold around the world under different names, recipes and brands, by different companies.
Mitzman D, Nutella: How the world went nuts for a hazelnut spread, 2014, BBC News Magazine, http://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-27438001
Doughnuts are delicious delicacies.
- Doughnuts are also known as ‘donuts’, and are edible food items that are flour based and are traditionally a round shape.
- Doughnuts can be made from a cake-style dough, or a yeast-like dough, and are typically eaten as a dessert or sweet food, often as a snack.
- Doughnuts are primarily made of a deep fried dough mixture that typically uses wheat flour and a combination of other ingredients, like eggs, milk, sugar, oil, and sometimes yeast.
- Doughnuts often contain up to 20 to 25% oil, and are typically covered with a sweet flavouring such as icing or glaze, chocolate, syrup, or sugar that sometimes has cinnamon added.
- Doughnuts are most often disc shaped, with or without a hole, although shapes can vary, and the hole is said to have been introduced so that the doughnuts cook more evenly and one is not left with a doughy centre.
- Doughnuts without holes often contain a filling such as custard, a sweet condiment like jam and/or cream, although sometimes a savoury filling is used.
- The ‘holes’ of doughnuts, typically cut by a puncher, may be coated and sold commercially, however they are often made from small balls of dough to look like ‘holes’.
- Fried dough mixtures similar to doughnuts originated in both Ancient American and Eurasian societies; while modern versions are often said to have been based on the Dutch ‘oliekoeken’ (oil cake).
- The first known printed doughnut recipe is from 1803, and those with holes are often said to have been invented by American sailor or captain, Hanson Gregory in 1847, although there are various versions of the story, and the truth of the matter is not known.
- America’s Canada is the largest doughnut consumer in the world, and they have the most commercial outlets for the snack, per person.