Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Easter Peanut Butter Begins!!!

Woohoo - it's the Easter post many of you have been waiting for! PEANUT BUTTER!

I have so many peanut butter Easter candies, I'm going to have to do at least two posts. This one will cover the smaller candies up to the size of the standard Reese's Egg. The next posts will cover all the many standard eggs and the GIANT peanut butter eggs. So kick back and enjoy this lovely trip to candy heaven.

The littlest peanut butter eggs are the Reese's Pieces Pastel Eggs and the peanut butter M & M's Speck-tacular Eggs. These are the only ones with an outer candy shell.

The Reese's Pieces Eggs come in several different packages. The large 12 oz bag:

The single serving 1.5 oz bag:

And the adorable 3.5 oz carton:

The M & M's just come in one size - the large 9.90 oz bag:

Both are in bight festive colors - the M & M's are indeed speckled. And look how big the Reese's Pieces eggs are compared to regular Reese's pieces - yay!

Here are the autopsy photos and you can see the major difference:

The M & M's (on the left) have chocolate, the Reese's Pieces eggs do not. I have to tell you, I love them both, I really do. In fact, I refuse to put one above the other, because they both are sooooo delicious!!! One thought though - this is the only time of year you can get the Reese's Eggs - you can get peanut butter M & M's anytime.

This is a Palmer mix with milk chocolate flavored eggs, cottontail crisps, and peanut butter filled rabbits:

Here are the peanut butter rabbits:

I have to tell you - these are pretty bad. Too much waxy chocolate and not enough peanut butter. Boooo!!!!

Reese's has these milk chocolate and peanut butter foil wrapped eggs:

This is the first time I've seen this packaging - a direct rip-off of the Cadbury Mini Cream Egg packaging. It's a much better deal price wise to buy the bag.

Here's the autopsy photo:

These are pretty damn good - filled with that delicious Reese's Peanut Butter.

Palmer has a very similar (slightly larger) foil wrapped peanut butter egg. It comes in an assortment with both caramel and fudge eggs:

Here they are - I like the look of that blob of peanut butter!

I like the size of this egg better and it is filled with creamy peanut butter. This, my friends, is pretty damn good. I know, I know, it's Palmer - but that peanut butter is hard to beat - I love it! I'm not going to say it's better than the Reese's Eggs - but I'm going to say they are just as good. Try them!!!! You'll probably have to get the assortment - I haven't seen any bags of just peanut butter. I found these at Rite Aid.

See the size difference (Palmer on the right)? See the peanut butter? Isn't it beautiful? I love Easter!

The last of the round eggs (meaning no flat bottom) is from Lindt:

Now I adore Lindt and the Lindor truffles and this is an amazing smooth, creamy wonderful Swiss chocolate. It is a better quality chocolate than either Palmer (duh) or Hershey, but the peanut butter just doesn't kick the same butt. It's more chocolately. I really like the more peanut buttery taste. I'm not saying I'm throwing this away or anything crazy, but I like the others better.

Let's move on up to the small flat eggs - these have less than 100 calories each and are less than 2 inches long. Reese's has both a white and a milk chocolate mini-egg and look at all the packaging options!

I was delighted with this cute thing:

You open it up and get a little of everything:

See everything that was in there? It's the perfect Easter gift! I was surprised and delighted so much was in it! Yay!!!

Here's a large bag with both flavors:

And one with what has got to be the most popular flavor - milk chocolate:

Here the little babies are:

Isn't that beautiful?

The trick here is thin layers of chocolate and HUGE quantities of peanut butter. Life is good!

Dove has Elegant Eggs (what the Fairy Bunny carries, I assume) and these are the peanut butter ones:

Eh. These are fine - don't get me wrong. I like Dove Chocolate very much and these are smooth and creamy, but there's just not enough peanut butter here. See?

See how thick all the layers of chocolate are? Too thick in my book - more peanut butter, more peanut butter, more peanut butter! The Reese's Egg totally crushed the Dove egg in my book. Totally.

New this year for us are Bissinger's peanut butter eggs:

I was surprised at the lovely molding - there are three different designs:

They are really pretty aren't they?

These are better than the Dove eggs - more chocolate and it's really, really delicious milk chocolate. But I am in love with the salty peanut butter of the Reese's egg. I know - this is having the chance to drive a Jag and sticking with your old beater Nova. I know. But I like what I like and I LOVE peanut butter. For me, it's all about the peanut butter. Give me the Nova!

More peanut butter tomorrow!!!!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Many, Many Malted Milk Eggs

I have fond memories of eating malted milk eggs as a kid - but I remember all that colored stuff coming off and getting all over my mouth. I swear I remember my brother's lips being blue after eating a blue malted milk egg! They don't make them like that anymore. : (

I seldom crave malted milk balls, but I like them alright. And at Easter time they seem to pop up everywhere as you shall see. And since I have now autopsied so many I know a bit about their secrets (which I shall reveal to you).

You know I had to see if Trader Joe's had any Easter Candy and sure enough:

They even give us some history on the carton:

Here, here!!

Yep - definitely egg shaped. Coated in chocolate with no outer candy coating or coloring. These are delicious and the chocolate is very, very good.

You KNOW Whoppers is going to do something! They have both regular size

and mini Robin Eggs:

Nice bright colors as advertised:

There we have an outer candy shell and a thin inner coating of chocolate. These are really good - and you can have almost twice as many for the same calories as Trader Joe's! And I don't mean twice as many mini's! It's because Joe's has more more rich, delicious chocolate. But these are really addictive and good.

The autopsy of the Mighty Malts eggs from Necco reveals something very horrifying:

NO CHOCOLATE!!! AAAIIIEEE!!! They have two types of malted eggs - one is Ice Cream Shoppe with the flavors strawberry, orange, chocolate, and cookie dough - this refers to the malted milk part - the coating doesn't seem to have much flavor. These remind me of cereal flavors - the strawberry tastes just like the Crunchberries in Captain Crunch cereal. The orange is really strong and sugary - heck these are all strong and sugary and fake tasting - kids would probably LOVE them! Me - not so much.

These are just regular old malt balls:

coated in a weird candy coating. Remember - no chocolate. Boo!!! I say. Boo!!!

Necco also makes the PAAS eggs. Interesting - the others are under the Mighty Malts brand and the Necco logo is nowhere to be seen - until you flip the bag over and look at the fine print.

These have a thin layer of chocolate:

and are the best of the three Necco offerings. I can't decide if I like them better than the Whoppers or not - they are larger and don't have the hard candy shell. Both are pretty good.

These are offered by Williams-Sonoma and Jelly Belly (I told you we'd get to those that were in the Deluxe Easter Mix!):

I think they are both made by Jelly Belly although the Williams-Sonoma bag says theirs are made exclusively for them. They taste the same, have the same ingredients, and the same autopsy results:

Get the Jelly Belly ones - I found them at Hallmark - they are $3.00 cheaper than the Williams- Sonoma ones. As pretty as these are, they were hard as rocks compared to some of the competition. The taste was okay - not impressive since these are the most expensive.

I swear these two are identical (same colors, same ingredients, same taste and autopsy results). One I found in Cracker Barrel:

And the other I found in Target:

These are good too! The candy shell is thinner than the Whoppers shell, which I actually like a little better. I'm not at all sure who makes these babies - each package just lists a distributor, not the actual maker. Another Easter mystery.

This is a Spring offering from Harry and David:

Now, I should like these! The candy coating is nice, they have a thick layer of chocolate, but for some reason - these were a no go. It was like the malted part didn't have any taste. All I had to do was eat one and then eat a Traders Joe's egg - the difference was clear. If it's going to be a malt ball it has to have that crazy crunch in the middle - it was kind of lacking here. Disappointing.

These have nothing to do with Easter, but since we're on a malted milk ball roll, check out these by World Market:

peanut butter!!!! Woohoo!!!

Yowzaa!!! These are really, really good! Very peanut buttery!! A+++

So here are the rankings as far as I'm concerned:

Peanut butter was the best, but it's not really an Easter Treat, so after that - I'd have to go with Trader Joe's.

Next up I'd go with Necco's Paas, closely followed by the Whoppers Robin Eggs.

The mystery brand is really, really close to those two. I had no idea how challenging ranking malted milk eggs could be! Who knew?

The prettiest (and most expensive) were last. (Williams-Sonoma and Jelly Belly)

The spring H & D ones weren't officially Easter treats, but if they were, they would be the worst.

Well, now I've eaten enough malted milks balls to last me the rest of my life.

The lesson - all things in moderation, all things in moderation.