Candycorn Candles, Pops, Etc.

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Sep 082014
 

candycorn_candleWooo Hoooo!

Gothtober applications are closed, Gothtober contributors have been picked and they’re all boiling and toiling in their laboratories with creativity, we will see their works starting Gothtober 1st!

Which brings me to the subject of Halloween candles and candy corn products. Some of you are “blood and guts” type Hallowen people, some of you are “Pumpkin and Fall Leaf” Halloween people. I, myself, am both. I can see merit in a severed hand candle on book case, or a lovely wreath of shiny black feathers adorning  your front door.

I used to really like the store “Illuminations” and felt that, out of all the retail-smelly-candle stores, this was the one that spoke to me. Unfortunately, “Illuminations” didn’t survive the great 700 Billion Dollar debacle of 2008 and was taken over by Yankee Candle. I feel like Yankee Candle is more for people who like baskets or linens, but maybe I’m wrong.

I could be wrong, because despite it all, I do find this Candycorn-scented candle to be intriguing and acceptable.  I was a little freaked out, however, to find that it doesn’t just stop at candles. You can purchase candycorn car vent sticks, air fresheners and wax melty thingers. The 65-95 hour candle will cost you about twenty-five bones, and the votives are $1.99 each.

If you don’t want to smell candy corn, but you want to taste it, and you’re looking for an experience outside of the usual candycorn regimen, might I suggest Charms Candycorn Pops? It’s $3.95 for a bag of 15 edible conversation starters.

candycorn_pops

Sep 202013
 

smore_candycorn There are passionate feelings about traditional candy corn. People either like candy corn, or they vehemently despise it, and getting them to try even weird hybrid candy corn flavors is a bit of a chore.

I’m a candy corn purist, can’t deal with super strange “Easter Corn” or “Valentine’s Corn” I don’t even know what those flavors are, freaks me right out.

S’mores are generally associated with summer and camping, but because of the chocolate and burnt marshmallow factor, they can  overlap into Autumn as an acceptable Halloween candy concept. This means that candy corn offering the facsimile of s’mores is much more decent than, say, Christmas candy corn, which probably tastes like pine needles or gingerbread and… just… no.

The picture of the bag here looks much brighter and delicious than the actual bag I bought at Target, the real bag looks dull and decidedly inedible. The little triangles of brown, cream and orange could almost be rootbeer flavored, and they all look about 2 years old. But I’m all into the hype, so I got ’em, dumped in a bowl at CraftNight and recorded my observations.

pile_o_corny

“Kind of tastes like a Tootsie Roll. Meh.”  Julie (who kept trying them over and over again through the course of the evening)

“That’s the stuff! It tastes like frosting, and marble chocolate cake!” Cynthia

“THIS should be candy corn, I hate candy corn!” Melody

“It’s not horrible. It still has the candy corn consistency.” Thomas

“They’re O.K.” Terry Lee

“YUM” Andy 

“Pretty darn GOOD! I’m gonna have s’more!” Elaine

“Delicious!” Sarah 

“It’s a mature flavor” Grace 

“I tried each segment, and when you eat the segments separately, they don’t taste good. But when you eat the entire candy corn at once, it tastes better. The tip of the candycorn is supposed to be caramel, the middle is supposedly the marshmallow part, and the bottom is chocolate flavored. I don’t like them.” Veronica 

Overall, the reaction was one of positivity, with a couple of “so-so” and one or two absolute disapproval ratings from people who don’t like candy corn in ANY flavor, or just couldn’t handle the taste.

These grow on you, they look rather unremarkable, but then, over time, you just keep going back to investigate the character of this candy again and again. Perhaps this is the mark of a good candy? It’s complex in that it really does have three distinct differently-flavored segments, all artificial, all vying for your attention. The taste is about 1,000 miles away from the combination of actual graham cracker, chocolate and marshmallow, but just the fact that a candy corn would have the audacity to believe in itself enough to inform you that it is evocative of s’mores makes  you want to eat it.

Some people are going to get religious about these and seek them out and buy all of them, and some people will just eat them because they are there. The most dangerous aspect about them seems to be that even though many of us felt “so-so” about s’more flavored candy corns … we couldn’t stop eating them.

Thumbs up, get a bag for the party!

Sep 172012
 


CANDY CORN OREOS. They are real. Earlier that week, Sebastian and I struck OUT trying to find them at the Eagle Rock Target, which made us wonder if it was all just a joke, but honestly, we were just too early in trying to get them. Erin found them easily just a couple days afterward and said that the store had an entire section packed to the gills with the things, so if you want them now, it should be very easy to procure a bag. All the Halloween stuff is up as well.

Our specialized candy corn OREO testing lab was located at Rosemary’s house. Rosemary is a big fan of Gothtober, and with daughter, Lori, is collaborating on what will be DAY 15 on the Gothtober calendar.

So we had Erin who BOUGHT the Candy Corn Oreos, Rosemary and Jason who supervised us, and Lori and Erin and I were the courageous guinea pigs. Erin was especially brave, because she had a very traumatic candy corn barf story from her youth that involved winning a giant bag of candy corn in a drawing contest and eating the entire bag of tri-color candies… resulting in bright orange projectile uh… fireworks.

Upon opening the bag and taking out the tray, Lori said “Oooh, they’re pretty!”

Now… we could just hate on these, because they are absolutely artificial and outside of the regular OREO realm of decency. But Erin made a good point: What is a candy corn supposed to be?” Corn?!? No, it’s not supposed to be corn. It’s a reminder of corn, especially since it’s three times the size of a regular kernel of corn. Candy corns, invented in the 1880s are naturally predisposed to the artificial flavors that are the hallmark of its candy-ness. Once upon a time when candy corns were hand made, the predominant flavors were honey and vanilla. Those flavors are easy enough to imitate in today’s lightning speed automated factories. Even Brachs candy corn has artificial flavoring, in addition to the real honey of its recipe. So when you open the bag, you get a whiff of “artificial flavor” which didn’t surprise us one bit. We’re not bothered that a cookie with artificial ingredients is attempting to replicate a candy that also possesses artificial ingredients.

We peeled the cookie halves apart, and could see the divided filling which contains one half of yellow, the other half is orange. I was able to separate the filling into two separate units of color for tasting. Can’t be positive, but it seems like the yellow side had more of a candy corn taste. But at that point, I might’ve just been high on sugar. It’s definitely a very sweet cookie, and Lori said “Since I first started eating them I began talking a lot more.” We were all talking a lot more.

I’d have to say that if the customary white, orange and yellow coloring and the triangular shape makes a candy corn, so does the texture. Ultimately, this is how the candy corn OREO fails, because a candy corn just isn’t a cookie, and vice versa. A candy corn’s weird waxlike density combined with the sugary vanilla flavoring is the ultimate juxtaposition of what will convince your mouth that something “tastes” like candy corn. Otherwise, this cookie just tastes like frosting between two sandwich cookie pieces, which crumbles into very non-candy-corn-like disorderly particles.

Out of 10 points, 10 being the best, we gave it a 5. Why a 5? It stands alone as a very sweet cookie, the filling seems like the kind of pre-packaged tubes of frosting that is sold in the cake aisle of the grocery store. The quality of the “cookie” part of the OREO is quite good, very crisp and simple. You’d never in a million years know it was candy corn flavored if you tried one of these in a blind taste test. And you might be sort of turned off by the artificial flavors… but after time goes by, you might feel like eating another one just because its there.

Sep 072012
 

Absurd! And for $3.59 at a Target near you through Halloween, Kraft has done it again. And by “it again” I mean some sort of torridly bizarre yellow-colored food aimed at reeling in the curious, the depraved, the risky thrill seekers on the edge of sanity… yes, we’re trying them. Mind you, Kraft brought us “macaroni & cheese” the tell-tale blue and yellow box with the lil’ noodles and the powdered yellow stuff that you stir into margarine and water to make… an exciting pile of YELLOW, best served with hot dog pennies. In Canada they simply call it “Kraft Dinner.” Whether it’s pasteurized processed individually wrapped cheese slices, Mac & Cheese or now… Candy Corn Oreos, Kraft is one of the grand daddies of natural and artificial flavors, and don’t you forget it.

This cookie ingenue has a filling that’s half yellow, half orange. Those of us who like candy corn will probably be all weirded out but want to try them anyway. It’s so wrong it’s right. It’s a conversation piece for your autumnal office party. They taste like modern times. This is everything we’ve fought for, or so they’d have us believe.

They’ll be sweet, in any case. They have to be, right?  I mean, the deal is, if a new flavored chip is on the market, you’re going to taste the trippy powder sprayed ON the chip. And as far as these candy corn Halloween Oreos go… we’re looking at the “blonde” oreo sandwich cookie part… and a different flavored “filling.” Because they make “birthday cake” flavored Oreos, a big deal as it’s the 100th year of making these little cookies that America’s been eating column by column since 1912. The consensus so far is that any auxiliary Oreo flavor basically tastes like sugary frosting. I remember the bright red double stuffed bag of Oreos stolen from the kitchen when we were burglerized in the 90s. Ah, the good ol’ days.

BUT ANYWAY WOW! This has NEVER existed before, a Candy corn flavored Oreo! They used the “blonde” cookies instead of the original chocolate to make it look more like a candy corn. Is that sad? Would chocolate have tasted better? If you picked up one of these not knowing it’s “candy corn” flavored, would you KNOW what it’s supposed to be emulating? Will the subtle honey and vanilla flavors of actual candy corn be apparent in this novelty snack?

Not a lot of people know that a “lemon” version of Oreos was available briefly in 1920, and in China it just gets crazy, with peach, mango and blueberry, some sort of spirited fruit campaign goes on over there. I’ve got friends in China… I need to see these. Chile and Argentina both have Dulce de Leche and Chocolate Oreos, how do we get some?

Anyway, that’s the crazy snack news flash, at some point I’ll tell you what they taste like, and there will be photos. I kind of hope you’re outraged and disgusted so that we can torment you further with more news about it. I love cookie gossip.

 

Oct 212010
 

Gothtober Helena KimToday’s piece by Helena Kim is a heartwarming tale of chick-meets-chick, told through gingerly crafted and stop-motion animated yarn and felt creatures. Hel acquired over 40 pieces of felt to prepare for this epic stop-motion journey, and each crocheted chick boasts about 400 loops apiece.

This lovely little Gothtober love story might make you misty, or foggy, or downright stormy, depending on your mood and the atmospheric conditions. And certainly it will make you appreciative of the time and care it takes to cut, shape, navigate and finagle each star, heart, pumpkin, cloud and candy corn!

Enjoy!