Elmer’s Easter Eggs II

March 10, 2008

One thing I forgot to mention in the first leg of the Elmer’s roundup was that it’s pretty cheap. These here were three for a dollar.

Sometimes cheap things bring pleasant surprises. Sometimes you get what you pay for. Here are examples of each.

Gold Brick Egg: I remember these. I would always get at least a couple in my Easter basket and would never eat them because they contained pecans. If the formula was the same then as it is now, I had little to worry about. There are practically no pecans here, and that’s a problem if you’re going to call it a “pecan melt-a-way.” There are a few pecan chips, which is what you see in the photo, but it’s not nearly enough to add flavor. I don’t like it when candy lies.

On to the chocolate. It doesn’t get much better here. It tastes more of fudge than chocolate… which is okay, I guess. I thought it might be fake!chocolate, so I checked the ingredients. Like the Dove Truffle Egg, this is chocolate filled with a “melt-a-way” filling. In the Dove Egg, coconut oil is used to create that silky texture. In the Gold Brick Egg, partially hydrogenated palm kernel oil is used. It’s certainly not quality ingredients, but I don’t know that I’d call it mockolate. (The outer layer of chocolate is quite real.)

In the end, I’m concerned with the taste. It’s not offensive, just bland. I don’t like or dislike it. It was cheap and it‘s a classic/novelty, so I considered giving it a 5. Then I remembered that it lied about the pecans. That demoted it to a 4.

Nutritional Breakdown: Serving size is one piece. There are 160 calories, 10g of fat (7g saturated), 16g of sugar, and 1g of protein per serving.

Rating: 4/10

Heavenly Hash: Let’s move on to something much better. Marshmallow and almonds enrobed in milk chocolate? Sounds great to me! The chocolate coating is fine, nothing outstanding, but perfectly acceptable. The marshmallow is a bit sweet, but the texture is nice — soft, moist, and stretchy. Now the almonds… yum! The almonds are great. They are whole, crunchy, fresh, and perfectly roasted. The nuttiness cuts through the sweetness and gives the piece a nice balance. Unfortunately, there were only two or three almonds in mine. I would really love (and certainly be willing to pay more than 33 cents for) this if it had more almonds. Still, it’s quite good.

Nutrition Breakdown: Serving size is one piece. There are 160 calories, 6g of fat (3g saturated), 23g of sugar, and 1g of protein per serving.

Rating: 7/10

Name: Gold Brick Egg / Heavenly Hash
Brand: Elmer’s
Store: Walgreens
Price: $0.33 each
Weight: 1 oz / 1.33 oz

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A Russell Stover Easter

March 4, 2008

When I first saw these I thought, ‘Russell Stover duped the Cadbury Crème Egg!’ I should have given them a little more credit, as these are bit different.

However, these do bear some resemblance to the Cadbury Crème, so I’ll preface this roundup with this statement: I’ve never liked Cadbury Crème Eggs. They’re too sweet for me. While I enjoy sweet chocolate, I’m not one for straight up sugary-sweetness. So, if you like the Cadburies, you’ll probably disagree with my assessment of these.

(I do, however, love that clucking bunny.)


Vanilla and Chocolate Crème: This is a milk chocolate shell filled with a sticky, liquefied vanilla fondant and a chocolate “yolk.” The filling is sugary-sweet — so much that it burns my throat. It doesn’t scream vanilla to me; it just sort of whispers it after assaulting me with sweetness. The chocolate yolk blended with the vanilla so that I couldn’t discern any distinct flavor.

The chocolate shell is good, and not too sweet, but is really overpowered by the filling. If you like Cadbury Crème Eggs, this might be for you, but it’s a bit too sweet for me! Rating: 4/10


Chocolate Crème: I hoped that the chocolate crème would be less sweet, but it’s still throat-searing. It’s not particularly chocolate-ty, just slightly fudgy. It reminds me a bit of chocolate syrup.

The texture of the filling is nice and thick. It’s quite viscous, so you don’t have to worry about it dripping all over you — unless it’s hot, I guess. It’s also very shiny, and I like shiny things. :P Rating: 5/10


Dark Chocolate Crème: This contains the same chocolate crème, but with a dark chocolate shell and a vanilla yolk plopped inside. The chocolate shell is good — not too sweet or bitter — and has a nice snap. Still, it’s not enough to tone down the sweetness of the filling. I think this would benefit from thicker sides. I ended up scooping a bit of the filling out with my fingers and eating the remains — it was pretty good that way, but my fingers were all sticky. Rating: 5/10

Marshmallow and Caramel: Don‘t worry, I’m actually quite fond of this one! The marshmallow filling is, surprisingly, not very sweet. It’s quite moist; in fact, it feared it would be greasy, but the mouth-feel was just fine. The yolk is a dollop of sweet, buttery caramel. All of the flavors — the marshmallow, caramel, and chocolate — work very well together.

Russell Stover also makes an enrobed Marshmallow and Caramel Egg, but this is very different — I like it better! Rating: 7/10

Cybele at Candy Blog also reviewed these.

Name: …Eggs.
Brand: Russell Stover
Store: Walgreens
Price: $0.50 each
Weight: 0.9 oz (marshmallow) and 1.2 oz. (the others)


Sifers Valomilk

January 22, 2008

The Valomilk is one of those regional candies that most people don’t have access to. So I was surprised to see it in the checkout line of my local “Mom and Pop” grocery store. I scooped it up, went home, and gleefully showed it to my mom. After making fun of my excitement, she proceeded to tell me that Valomilks had been sold there for a while.

Well, now I’ll do a better job of keeping my eyes open.

The Valomilk is made by the Russell Sifers Candy Company, which is located in Kansas. I remember seeing it featured on the Food Network, and someone said something along the lines of “you know it’s a Valomilk when it runs down your chin.” That doesn’t sound very appetizing, does it?

Luckily, my chin remained clean, but it is a rather messy candy. The chocolate tends to break away, leaving the marshmallow filling free to run out. It was freezing (okay, 50 degrees, but that’s freezing to me) when I had it, so the marshmallow remained pretty solid and didn’t run very far.

So we’ve established that the marshmallow innards are sticky and flowing. It’s also sweet and surprisingly smooth on the tongue. It’s missing the strong vanilla component I was expecting – it just tastes like marshmallow. The chocolate is slightly chalky and reminiscent of the chocolate Easter bunnies I had as a child. (Yes, I realize that is oddly specific.) It has a strong flavor that goes very well with the filling.I really like the old-fashioned wrapper. Unfortunately, I don’t think it’s very appealing to kids. That’s a shame because I think kids would have a lot of fun with this product.

Overall, it’s good though not great. But I’d certainly have it again, partly for the fun of it.

Ingredient Watch: Clear.

Nutrition Breakdown: Serving size is one package. Each serving contains 280 calories, 13g of fat, 26g of sugar, and 2g of protein.

Rating: 7/10 (an extra point for being a classic)

Name: Valomilk
Brand: Sifers
Store: local grocery
Price: $0.69


A Russell Stover Christmas

December 25, 2007

We’ve already had a Russell Stover Halloween; now it’s time for a Russell Stover Christmas. The products that I reviewed for Halloween are available in Santa forms, but I chose a few new products this time. There are still a few varieties that I passed on though. I guess we’ll get to those for Easter!

Coconut Wreath: I wouldn’t call this a wreath. I would call it an unattractive (but tasty) dollop of milk chocolate and toasted coconut. I usually don’t care for coconut. I like the flavor but find the stringy texture unappealing. However, the coconut here is toasted and crispy, which lends a great crunchy texture. This is a simple, sweet mix of chocolate and coconut, and I really liked it! (140 calories, 9g of fat, 11g of sugar, 2g of protein.)

Rating: 8/10


Chocolate Marshmallow Snowman: This petite snowman is chocolate marshmallow covered in milk chocolate. The chocolate marshmallow has a mild cocoa flavor and is super soft, smooth, and springy. It’s less sweet than a typical marshmallow, but the bar’s sweetness is kicked up by the milk chocolate coating.

Unfortunately, this contains sorbitol, an artificial sweetener, which really irks me. I’ve mentioned before that I don’t think that artificial sweeteners belong in candy. Of course, neither do partially hydrogenated oils and high fructose corn syrup. But I’m sensitive to artificial sweeteners, so the inclusion is a little more bothersome — I didn’t bother to read the ingredients until after I ate this. Still, it’s Christmas, so I’ll give it the rating I would have given it sans sorbitol. I’m sure some of you don’t care about it! (100 calories, 3g of fat, 13g of sugar, 1g of protein.)

Rating: 7/10
Marshmallow Santa in Dark Chocolate: When I reviewed Halloween’s Buzzard Egg, I mentioned that I would like to see a dark chocolate covered marshmallow. Well, here it is! I think that Santa shape here is actually pretty well done. I can definitely make out his outline.

Again we’ve got soft, springy marshmallow. One thing I like about Russell Stover’s holidays products is that they are fresh. This really shows in their marshmallow products. (I also like the line because it’s very cheap — 39 cents a piece!)

The marshmallow is sweet, but the semi-sweet chocolate tones it down. It’s not nearly as sweet as the milk chocolate covered marshmallow is. The chocolate comes though more, lending a better balance.

However, again with the sorbitol. Again I’ll let it slide for the rating. I should know the read the ingredients before I eat something. This is something I do with everything I consume except for candy. I say I’ll try any candy once, but artificial sweeteners are a no go for me. (So much for the Peppermint Peeps!) (110 calories, 3g of fat, 14g of sugar, 1g of protein.)

Rating: 8/10

Brand: Russell Stover
Store: Walgreens
Price: $0.39 each


Peeps Cutouts

December 24, 2007

Just Born has been expanding its Peeps line over the past few years. You can find them for all the major candy holidays, not just Easter. They’ve also added flavors: Cocoa Cats, Peppermint Stars, and even Cookie Cutouts. Last year was the first time I saw these cookie flavored Peeps. I bought a pack because they looked like good gingerbread house occupants. But I ended up baking cookie people for the gingerbread house, and these Peeps sat around into January. I almost threw them away. I like Peeps, but cookie flavored? Weird.

I decided to give them a try anyway. I was horrified. Horrified that I actually liked them. Yes, I liked them quite a bit. So much that I bought another package this year.

That being said, I don’t think that these really taste like cookies. They taste like a mix of artificial vanilla and almond. Yes, artificial… so artificial, but man, I like them. Don’t ask me why.

Like all Peeps, these are soft and springy marshmallow with a sparkly sugar coating. These are colored all the way through, unlike most Peeps, which are white with colored sugar.

Come on, they’re cute. Admit it.

Ingredient Watch: Nothing suspicious. These are basically just sugar, corn syrup, and gelatin. Not remotely healthy, but hey, fat free!

Nutrition Breakdown: Servings size is two peeps. There are 100 calories, 0g of fat, 24g of sugar, and 1g of protein per serving.

Bottom Line: I should not adore these.. But I do!

Rating: 7/10

Name: Peeps Cutouts
Brand: Just Born
Store: Target
Price: $0.99


Hebert’s Fully Loaded Rocky Road

November 19, 2007

The Fully Loaded bars are slabs of chocolate ‘loaded’ with extras on one side. It’s not filled, just covered. The Rocky Road bar is a slab of milk chocolate covered with dark chocolate pieces, walnuts, and “marshmallow.”


I put marshmallow in quotes because this bar doesn’t contain any actual marshmallow. Instead, it’s covered with what seems to be white chocolate. I suppose this is because marshmallows would go stale if you just slapped them on top of a bar. While the white confection adds marshmallow-like sweetness, the texture is totally lost.

In fact, I think the whole concept of Rocky Road is lost. Rocky Road is just chocolate, marshmallow, and nuts, isn’t it? Without real marshmallow, can we really call this Rocky Road? The walnuts occasionally come in with a nice nutty flavor, but it’s not enough.

The slab of chocolate itself is nice. It’s rich and milky. But it overwhelms the other flavors, which are supposed to be the highlight of the bar.

I liked this bar just fine, but it didn’t live up to it’s name. Still, I’m interested in the other Fully Loaded bars, including the Dark Chocolate Turtle that’s sitting in my candy chest!

Rating: 6/10

Name: Fully Loaded Rocky Road
Brand: Hebert’s Confections
Store: Walgreens
Price: $1.50


A Russell Stover Halloween

October 30, 2007

Buzzard Egg
This is a marshmallow egg covered in milk chocolate. I didn’t quite realize what it was until I got home. An egg? For Halloween? Did they decide to slap a buzzard on leftover Easter stock and call it Halloween candy?

Silliness aside, I actually like the packaging. The wrapper is a nice blackened purple/silver color and the buzzard looks sharp. I’m rather afraid of taking her egg.

The chocolate layer was very thin… and very sweet. The marshmallow was fluffy, soft, sticky… and very sweet. Yes, the whole thing was very, very sweet. Throat-burningly so. But that’s okay with me; I like very sweet. I was also very pleased with the freshness of the marshmallow.

At 110 calories, this is a nice treat that I don’t have to feel guilty about. I’d be interested in a dark chocolate version to cut some of the sweetness.

Rating: 6/10

Caramel Pumpkin
The caramel is chewy, with a nice stretch – I pulled it in half and the caramel stretched for a long time. However, it’s lacking in taste. It’s not buttery, salty, burnt, or even particularly sweet. It’s not bad, but it’s distinctly lackluster.Rating: 5/10

Caramel & Marshmallow Pumpkin
I suppose this is the love child of the marshmallow egg and caramel pumpkin. Now, I know I just knocked the caramel pumpkin, but I wonder if my taste buds were off that day because the caramel here is much better. It’s buttery, but it would benefit from some saltiness. The marshmallow adds sweetness and interesting texture.

Rating: 6/10

Coconut Cream Pumpkin
My first thought was, ‘Wow, what a poor misshapen pumpkin.’ While the other two pumpkins actually resembled pumpkins, this looked much more like a hockey puck. It seemed very heavy and solid to me, almost like a chocolate covered cookie (or hockey puck). It’s not pretty, but I can forgive that.

The middle didn’t strike me as cream, but more like fluffy, sticky icing. I’m not sure that the cream is actually coconut flavored. It tasted mostly of vanilla, but there were pieces of coconut throughout. Not so much that it had that stringy texture, but enough to give it a nice flavor. Coconut isn’t a preferred flavor of mine, but I liked this.

Rating: 7/10

Overall, I think these would be nice additions the special Halloween bags you might make for your kids/grandkids/other special kids in your life. They are also a nice, cheap treat to pick up for yourself. They are fresh and come in a greater variety than what I’ve reviewed here (orange marshmallow, strawberry creme, etc.).

The calorie count is much lower than a regular candy bar. The Buzzard Egg has 110 calories; the Caramel Pumpkin has 160; the Caramel Marshmallow Pumpkin has 120; the Coconut Creme Pumpkin has 150.

Brand: Russell Stover
Store: Walgreens
Price: $0.39 each