Thursday 31 August 2017

NEW! Cadbury Dairy Milk Mint Oreo 41g Bar (Tesco)

I don't think that any of us have quite got over the atrocious "peanut butter" Oreo Dairy Milk; It was an absolute insult to us nut butter lovers. I even refused to buy the mint version of the Oreo Dairy Milk on the back of my disgust, despite reading raring reviews on it, and enjoying the actual biscuit mint flavoured OreosI also didn't fancy buying a 100g mint chocolate bar when I'm not the biggest mint chocolate fan. Sometimes the combination reminds me all too much of toothpaste, and other times it's the refreshing hit that I crave. Kind of like Mars bars - I just have to be in the mood. So when I found this single serving 41g bar in Tesco last week, I put my reservations to one side and took a punt on the minty, biscuity, Cadbury chocolate bar. 

"Milk chocolate with a mint flavoured filling (36%) and biscuit pieces (14%)."

I still expect to see the old cube shaped segments when opening a bar of Dairy Milk. Do you experience the same thought, or am I just getting older (back-in-the-good-old-days-esque). I was pleased however to find that each bubble contained a generous amount of filling, which was a less ludicrous shade of green than mint Aero, and jam packed full of cookie pieces.

The overall flavour was pretty good. As per the Oreos, the mint was well balanced - not knocking into Aquafresh territory but standing it's own against the milk chocolate and cookie biscuit pieces. As for the chocolate, it's been so long since I last bought a Dairy Milk that I can't acurately comment on whether it's the same stuff used in the unadulterated bars. All I can say was that it had that undeniable Cadbury taste.

The cookie pieces were wonderful. They were the only aspect that I enjoyed in the [don't make me say it again] "peanut butter" Oreo bar, and they worked well once more - but this time the filling around the biscuit didn't grate on me. They were perfectly crunchy and added welcome texture, as well as a touch of added flavour depth from the cocoa which had the added bonus of breaking up all the sweetness. 

Then it dawned on me. I know why I was enjoying the bar so much. It reminded me of Viscount biscuits. Do they even still exist? As a child they were the holy grail of party food, I guess because they were the closest snack one could get to the Christmas luxury biscuit selection boxes*. Talking of which, If you didn't grab the foil covered ones first, there's something wrong with you.

Next time I'm craving mint chocolate, I'll probably choose this bar over an Aero. Cadbury's milk chocolate might've gone downhill, but it still beats Nestle's every time. 


Wednesday 30 August 2017

NEW! Nature Valley Nut Butter Peanut Biscuits (Sainsbury's)

My love for peanut butter knows no bounds, which is why my heart skipped a beat a couple of days ago when I spotted these new nut butter filled Nature Valley bars on @productsinstores instagram feed. They've been out in the States for quite some time, and I've been desperately wanting to try them ever since. In fact I even had a conversation with @candyhunting a year or so ago about doing a food swap which would have included them -that was before we realised how insane the extortionate shipping fees were. None of the import companies seem to do granola bars either, so I've just had to ignore the jealousy that prevailed anytime I saw the Nut Butter bars pop up on social media.

Not any longer though! Nature Valley are finally twigging that many of us Brits also love peanut butter and launched the (slightly disappointing) Crunchy peanut butter bars at the beginning of the year. I really hoped these would live up to my drawn out expectations, especially as they were on the expensive side at £2.90 for a box of four bars -they seem to be exclusive to Sainsbury's at the moment. 

"Crunchy biscuits made with wholegrain oats, barley and honey with a peanut butter flavoured filling."

I was pleased to find that they were decent sized biscuits, and even more chuffed when I prised the top layer off to find a decent peanut butter layer in the middle! Hurrah! 

Jesus F Christ. I was not expecting that! The biscuits tasted like Hobnobs. I'm sorry but if you don't like Hobnobs, we certainly can't be friends. They're arguably one of the best standard (i.e non chocolatey) biscuits. I'd chose them over a digestive every time. Stop rambling Amy. Anyway, they were oaty, sweet, and crunchy. Biscuit perfection. 

Please let the peanut butter be equally delightful. 

It was too! In fact Rob was laughing at me last night, as I actually squealed whilst trying them:

"Oh my god, oh my god, they're even better than Nutter Butters!....Well, maybe not better, but just as good!"

That peanut butter was completely authentic (it's simply made from peanuts and salt) and there was enough of it to really pack a punch. It seems Nature Valley have redeemed themselves from the shortcomings of the peanut butter crunchy bars. They were so good that I've actually detoured on the way home from work today to pick up a box of the Almond Nut Butter Biscuits, and I'm eating one as I type... so stay tuned for a full review of that flavour too!


*I was tempted to give them 11...

Tuesday 29 August 2017

NEW! Hershey's Cookies'N'Creme Dipped Pretzels (A Taste Of The States)

I told you I’m obsessed with pretzels at the moment! I actually had my greedy eyes on the brand new Snyders Reese’s pretzels, but A Taste of The States hadn’t had any in when I placed my order. I can’t moan at all though, I had the Good Health pretzels to munch through and have an affinity towards anything cookies and cream. I’ve had sweet (S'mores flavoured) Snyder's pretzels once before, but I wasn't overly impressed with them

I can’t help but feel that It’s such a shame that pretzels aren’t given the recognition they deserve here in the U.K. I love their salty crispness, which is perhaps odd considering that I rarely crave potato crisps. Hey, I’m just contrary like that. Thank goodness for America!

The packet contained roughly 25 traditionally shaped, generously coated pretzels. There was  a good amount of cookie crumb poking about in the bag’s corners too -a good sign for those cereal dust fans* out there, you know who you are. I’m not sure how big Snyder’s mouth is but I didn’t agree that they were bite size. Well, you could fit a whole one in your mouth in I guess, but I’m more ladylike than that.

That’s a lie, I just like to savour my pretzels.

They were utterly delicious though; I mean seriously good. Despite loving the Hershey’s Cookies ’N’ Creme bar, I’ll admit that you need to be in a sugary mood to crave one as they are  sickly concoctions. I was therefore relieved to find that Snyder’s hadn’t done away with the salinity in these pretzels completely, as the salt was required to counteract the sweetness. The resulting combination was tantalising on the tastebuds: a journey of sweet vanilla with a touch of cocoa, followed by that wonderful salty hit. All that chocolate luckily hadn’t hampered the crunchiness of the pretzel dough either, and I enjoyed every single nibble. 

I’d like to say that my pretzel cravings have been satisfied, but actually I’m now even more desperate than ever to try the Reese’s covered Snyder’s Pretzels, which are now in stock at A Taste of The States. Don’t forget, you can get 20% off the new pretzels -and anything else that takes your fancy- from A Taste of The States by using the code AMYSEEKS20 at checkout.

Thank you to A Taste Of The States for sending me the new Hershey’s Cookies ’n’ Creme pretzels!


*you know, the people who love the end of the bag of cereal? I’ll admit here that we normally give ours to the dog, which I know some of you will deem heretic! 

Sunday 27 August 2017

NEW! Ben & Jerry's Home Sweet Honeycomb Ice Cream (Tesco)

Ben and Jerry's have a cruel habit of releasing a batch of new flavours in quick succession. I get that this may lead to exciting times for our tastebuds, but it's not so easy on the wallet -especially at the newly inflated price of £4.20 per pint (and it's only been spotted in Tesco thus far). The launch of Home Sweet Honeycomb has swiftly followed the fairly unexciting Berry Neighbourly, and also marked the end of my self-imposed ice cream buying ban. That didn't last long.

"Have we got a sweet treat for you; creamy ice cream, chocolatey honeycomb chunks, a salted caramel honey swirl – your taste buds will feel the buzz (bees, geddit?) with this concoction. Home Sweet (Honey) Comb was created to carry an all-important, timely message: it’s time to come together for people in need of a safe place to call home. It’s time to come together for refugees."

Christ, it was soft. I mean, so soft that I couldn't scoop it properly. It had a fair amount of chocolate honeycomb nuggets though, and a faint ripple of the caramel honey swirl. I really hoped it would be less sweet and more luxurious than the Sainsbury's Honeycomb & Caramel Dairy ice cream tub.

The cream flavoured ice cream was so-so. I mean it was sweet and creamy, but offered very little in the way of excitement and melted far too quickly. To be honest, I thought that it was a fairly uninspired flavour from the brand that used to be relied upon for their ingenuity and imagination. Somehow the cream flavour worked much better in the Strawberry Swirled -perhaps because it had the fruity sauce to break it up. 

The honey caramel swirl was also a little lacklustre. I can't help but feel like the developers couldn't make up their mind either. Choose honey or salted caramel Ben & Jerry's for goodness sake! In any case, the sauce wasn't thick like the centre of their Karamel Sutra or Blondie Brownie pints, and kind of fused with the cream flavoured ice cream, resulting in a mild toffee throughout. Humf. 

On to those chocolate coated honeycomb bites. Thankfully were delicious and reminded me of the bags that ASDA used to sell. Again though, they weren't anything particularly innovative, and I can't help but think that Ben & Jerry's have been more than a little lazy with this tub. 

To be honest, this is no better than the Sainsbury's tub. In fact I'd rather save my pennies have the Sainsbury's honeycomb & caramel ice cream... 

scrap that... I'll stick to their peanut & caramel tub instead. 


Saturday 26 August 2017

Good Health Peanut Butter Filled Pretzels (TKMaxx)

I don't like to think that I'm prone to being swayed by marketing, but of course I am. I first came across these peanut butter filled pretzels a couple of months ago, but baulked at the price (£2.89 for a 141g bag) and left them in TKMaxx. Then they happened to crop up in one of Fabien's vlogs,                      and by the time I saw them on Hebe's instagram page I just had to try them. Luckily, Hereford TKMaxx had a single bag left -which I saw as the final sign that I was absolutely meant to treat myself to them.

I'm going through a bit of a pretzel loving phase at the moment. In fact, I'd go as far as saying that I'm enjoying munching on a bag of pretzels with a glut of peanut butter (for dipping) more than my nightly chocolate bars at the moment. I know. Shock. 

These pretzels were in a completely different shape of course, and were made in the land that's famous for peanut butter: America. Hebe did forewarn me that they were lacking on the generosity of their fillings, but I was still excited to get stuck in.

The pretzel shells were perfectly crisp, and I adored the abundance of large salt crystals that adorned them. Peanut butter is nothing without a hefty saline kick after all. But where was that peanut butter at, I wondered. Hebe wasn't kidding; the image on the front of the packet spoke lies. The shells cracked satisfyingly between my teeth, but each pretzel parcel was (at maximum) a third full. I thought we could rely on our American cousins to provide proper portions, but alas, apparently that's just a stereotype. This was a huge shame too, as the peanut butter was delicious - there just wasn't nearly enough of it.

That said, I found these peanut butter filled pretzels to be frustratingly moreish, but you'll need a large drink to have with them. Pretzels are naturally thirst-making, and these are especially so. I can't help but think they're the perfect movie night snack though. Give me a glass* of Rioja, a bag of these Peanut Butter Filled Pretzels, and pop WonderWoman on and I'll be one happy girl.

If you want to try these pretzels but don't have any luck in TKMaxx, I have found them on iherb!


*lets be honest, I mean bottle -it's Saturday after all!

Friday 25 August 2017

De Bron Sugar Free Cherry Gums (Sweets Without)

Last month Sweets Without sent me those lovely Diablo cappuccino sweets to try - which I'm rather gutted to have finished. Luckily for me, Peter has since sent over a different brand of sugar free sweet for me to try. In fact, Peter gave me a choice between the vast range of sweets made by Dutch confectioners De Bron, and although I was tempted by the exciting sounding Caribbean Mix, it was the gummy cherries that caught my eye. I do love a good jelly cherry sweet! Could a sugar-free version be anywhere near as tasty though?

The sweets looked exactly like their regular, full sugar, counterparts but are made with Maltitols to sweeten them instead. They were soft and chewy like the regular versions too, with a strong yet sweet cherry juice flavour. In fact, they were really rather good!

I wafted one under Bert's sceptical eyes. He doesn't buy into sugar-free/low-fat/low-carb/high-protein anything. He eats what he likes and never contemplates having any healthier alternatives. He also adores sweets. Whilst he's never tempted by my excessive chocolate collection, he can't help but dive into the sweetie jar that resides on our coffee table in our living room. The sweetie jar was empty though (a very rare occurrence) and so he tried one of the De Bron Sugar Free Cherry Gums. 

"Oooh they're nice."

I promise you, that's high praise from Bert -for reference, his response to the banoffee cheesecakes was "yeah, they're ok".

I think he's since aten more of the pack than me! 

You can find these sugar free Cherry Gums, and the rest of the De Bron range on Sweets Without's website. Thanks for the samples Peter.


Thursday 24 August 2017

Banoffee Cheesecake Slices (M&S)

My sister and I were talking about how good the banoffee digestives are again the other day when she asked me why no-one does banoffee cheesecake. I then reminded her of the M&S banoffee cheesecakes that used to be part of the dine in meal deal. "You know, the ones that were designed for two that you used to munch by yourself." "Ah... yes, I remember." 

This jogged my memory back to a conversation I had with a lady called Zoe following the Sicilian Lemon & Ricotta cheesecake slice review. I remember Zoe asking me if I had got the M&S Banoffee cheesecakes to review, but I hadn't - thinking that they had been out for years, and that I'd had them many times before. What I hadn't realised (until Zoe informed me) was that they've been re-imagined. I put them on my mental list of items to review... and then promptly forgot all about them. The banoffee chat with my sister prompted me to pop into Marks & Spencer on my way home from the train station on Sunday afternoon, where I found a packet with a yellow reduced sticker on. It was fate!

"A baked banana and muscovado sugar cheesecake topped with a Belgian chocolate ganache and toffee mousse on a digestive biscuit base."

One of the cheesecakes looked a little worse for wear, which was unusual for M&S, who are normally very thoughtful with their packaging.

First up, I sampled the mousse, which was beautifully light, with a sweet toffee flavour to it. I still think that a mousse topping is an odd (and unnecessary) choice, but admittedly it worked better here than in Waitrose's new mocha cheesecakes.

Underneath this layer was the chocolate ganache, but I'd be hard pressed to comment on the flavour of it as it was so thin. In fact, I hadn't properly read the product description until I came to type this, and until a few moments ago I thought it was another toffee layer. This may sound like a complaint, but actually it's not. You see, I can see why M&S would want to provide a barrier between mousse and cheesecake (and it served that purpose well) yet I'm glad it didn't overpower either of the more traditional banoffee elements that the ganache was sandwiched by.  

As for that banana and muscovado mousse... well. It was a work of art. It was fluffy like their chocolate orange cheesecake, lacking the stodginess that 90%+ of supermarket cheesecakes suffer from. The banana flavour was authentic and omnipresent (as it had been with the Banoffee Semifreddos), shining through the toffee mousse layer to take centre stage. A delicious caramel undertone followed the banana; which was every bit as delightful as you can imagine. 

As for that biscuit base, it was thick, buttery and utterly scrumptious. You'd think that would be an aspect that is easy to perfect, when actually so many cheesecakes fall (and fail) on that final hurdle. 

There is very little, if anything, that I'd change about this dessert. It's the best banoffee cheesecake* I've ever had, and one of the best cheesecakes I've had in a long time. Bravo M&S, and thanks Zoe for giving me the nudge to try this new formula! They're worth every penny, full price** of not!


*I'm sure that will change when I get to try this one day.... (fingers crossed!).

**I can't remember the exact price, but it was less than £3.

Wednesday 23 August 2017

Double Decker Banana Moon Pie (A Taste Of The States)

I've been wanting to try the Banana Moon Pie for a good couple of years now. It first caught my eye when the big sweet shop in Hereford city centre started stocking them, but I refused to spend £2 on one that was a year out of date. Yes really. I know that these things tend to last way longer than their sell by thanks to all of the artificial.. well everything.. but it was principle, you know? Way back in November I was sent the Double Decker Chocolate flavoured Moon Pie and whilst this reminded me of my desire to try the banana flavour, I did little about it. Cue A Taste Of The States. 

Like the chocolate version, this was made up of layers of graham cracker and marshmallow, but this time it was a sunny* shade of yellow. 

The banana flavour was omnipresent and, of course, undeniably artificial. It was the good kind of synthetic though, at the foam sweet end of the spectrum and not the chemically one. The gooey, cakey quality made it feel very childish (and therefore all the more enjoyable) to eat. 

I had already learned from previous experience that a quick blast in the microwave transforms a Moon Pie into an even oozier concoction. So when you try one, please do warm yours up too - but only if you don't mind sticky fingers! 

This one is for the die hard banana sweet lovers out there. Those of us who are prepared to face the inevitable sugar high and relish the nostalgic glee of sticky marshmallow. The Banana Moon Pies are are quite the bargain too at just 99p from A Taste Of The States, and if you enter AMYSEEKS20 at the checkout you'll get 20% off too! 


*does that sound more appetising than slightly alarming? 

Tuesday 22 August 2017

Ritter Sport Honey Salt Almonds Milk Chocolate

I fully acknowledge that I am exceedingly late to the Ritter Sport party. In fact I'm more than a little bit embarrassed to admit that this Honey Salted Almonds bar was the first I've tried from their range. I wasn't actually out to buy chocolate, but was in the local corner shop buying vegetables when it called to me. That's what I like to refer to as balanced shopping. I have seen this bar in Waitrose however, and Ritter Sport is widely available now, so should you read this review and decide to buy it (if you haven't already) then I'm sure you won't have any problems finding it.

"Milk chocolate with roasted, salted almonds with a honey flavoured coating (25%)."

It's strange. Ever since I reviewed that Muller Goes Nuts corner I've been craving caramelised almonds. I've also moaned about the lack of almondy chocolate bars in the U.K so I hoped Ritter Sport would hit the spot!

The chocolate was rich, more so than the standard U.K bars, but I had predicted as much considering the cocoa content -30% cocoa solids. It melted fairly slowly too, with a creaminess that I've come to expect from Belgian chocolates (I guess Ritter Sport is closer to the country than us Brits). 

As for those almonds, they were sizeable and crunchy. Although the size of the nuts may feel overbearing for some, I liked the fact that they hadn't been chopped up beyond recognition. There was a slight honey note that came through, and I was left wondering whether Maple syrup would have worked even better. Aren't I a pernickety sod? 

The other aspect that slightly bothered me was the lack of salinity. I adored the larger rock salt crystals that adorn the Grown Up Chocolate Company's salted caramel cups, and found that this bar could've done with a similarly obvious salty boost. The salinity was there, but it was just on the weaker side. 

I'd happily buy this bar again, however I'm now keen to try the Cornflake and Rum & Raisin Ritter Sport bars. Which flavour is your favourite?


Monday 21 August 2017

Magnum Double Raspberry (Tesco)

This weekend I stayed with my sister and we found ourselves craving some proper comfort food. Both of us were super-achey (she’s training for the Cardiff Half Marathon) and I’d started phase two of the Crusader Strength Program*. We needed stuffed crust cheese pizza and ice cream. But what ice cream to have? Lou, like me, has a strong love for all things Black Forest (I think we’ve got our grandma’s Xmas roulade to thank for that) and so it didn’t surprise me that she was drawn to the new double raspberry Magnums whilst we were on our junk food hunt in Tesco.

I was unimpressed with Magnum’s 2017 flavours when they were announced earlier this year. Double raspberry? Double coconut? Meh. As you might’ve gathered I’m not Magnum’s biggest fan, but I wasn’t about to argue with my sister! 

"Raspberry ice cream with a chocolate flavour coating (8%), raspberry sauce (19%) and milk chocolate (24%)."

The ice sticks have a similar layout to the Double Peanut Butter Magnums; i.e. the ice cream resides in the centre, surrounded by a chocolate layer, then a sauce, all coated in milk chocolate. 

Biting into the stick revealed the tetralogy of distinct layers. The ice cream in the middle had a pleasant berry flavour, but you'd be hard pressed to ascertain that it was raspberry and not strawberry. This might sound like a complaint, but I was fond of the seemingly discontinued white raspberry Magnums, and so did enjoy the ice cream. 

The raspberry sauce was sticky and oozed from between the chocolate layers. It was much thinner than the sauce in the double peanut butter Magnums, and I preferred it as such. Magnum have made it from raspberry puree, which was a wise idea as it gave the sauce a sharpness that counteracted the sweetness from the ice cream wonderfully. 

The milk chocolate coating was just as tasty as I'd hoped it would be. Magnum might've reduced the size of their lollies quite considerably in recent years but they don't seem to have messed with their chocolate. However, I can't help but think that this ice cream would have been really special had Magnum have opted for a white chocolate coating. I mean, white chocolate and raspberry were just meant to be together weren't they?

Thanks Lou bum to treating me to the Double Raspberry Magnum (especially as I've promised to not buy any more new ice cream until I've got my collection under control). 


 *please check it out if you fancy building some strength and muscle with an extensive full-body plan, I can’t believe the changes I’ve seen in five weeks.

Sunday 20 August 2017

Efectiv Pro & Oats High Protein Flapjacks (Online)

There’s not a day that goes by when I don’t eat oats in some form or another. In fact, it was the food I missed most when in Malaysia earlier this year. Almost every morning is kick-started with a bowl of protein oats (proats if you will), but I also love granola and flapjacks too. Protein flapjacks however are often disappointing, and tend to be so far removed from real flapjacks that I’d rather have a real flapjack and get my protein elsewhere. I’m not averse to trying new products though and so when Efectiv contacted me a few weeks ago to ask if I’d like to try their new protein flapjacks and Dual bars, I accepted their kind invitation. After all, the protein bar market is rapidly evolving. Gone are the days of chewy bricks, thank goodness! 

Their flapjack range currently consists of three flavours: Chocolate Orange, Toffee Oat & Cherry Bakewell. Each 70g bar is less than 270 cals and contains 14g of protein (check the bottom of the review for the full macros). They’re made with gluten free oats and whey, with no palm oil or gelatine. Efectiv have also used natural flavours and sweeteners, and the flapjacks are GMO free and certified Halal. One massive bonus for me is that they contain no soya protein or polyols, making them much kinder on your stomach. This makes them higher in carbs, but also the perfect post-workout treat. I say treat, but that’s only right if they taste good… 

Cherry Bakewell
I’d normally save the flavour I’d anticipate would taste the best until last, but my preconceptions on what these bars would taste like wasn’t especially high and so I thought I’d give Efectiv the best chance possible. 

The first thought that struck me was how much closer to a real flapjack this bar looked. It was also a decent size too. The second realisation was just how soft the bar was - often protein flapjacks are either super dry or gluey, but this was neither. 

The texture was spot on. Soft and gooey, with a pleasant chew that wasn’t hard work. The cherry flavour however was milder than I’d have liked and I couldn’t help but think that either a layer of jam or chunks of dried cherries would improve the taste. It was still the best protein flapjack I’d tried to date though. 


Chocolate Orange
Unlike the Bakewell bar, this flapjack was dark in colour. Texturally it was very similar though. 

As for the flavour, this time it was much punchier, although I’d describe it more as cocoa orange as it lacked the milkiness that I’d associate with eating a bar of orange flavoured chocolate. In fact, the flavour kind of reminded me of something that Trek might make, but it was much tastier than Trek’s protein flapjacks. 


Toffee Oat
I saved this bar until last and found myself really looking forward to it. 

I wasn’t disappointed either. The bar tasted like a proper flapjack! It was gooey, sweet, soft and chewy with a lovely toffee undertone. In fact, I’d go as far as saying that I’d happily eat the Efectiv toffee & oats pro&pats flapjack instead of a normal flapjack and I’ll be hunting down more to try in the future!


All in all, I was mightily impressed with these protein flapjacks from Efectiv. I do feel like the flavour of the Cherry Bakewell bar could be improved slightly, but that’s just a mini moan! Thank you to Efectiv for sending me the samples. The flapjacks (and the new Dual bars, watch out for the review) are available from their website.

*as promised, here's the Macro breakdown:

Saturday 19 August 2017

Honeycomb & Caramel Dairy Ice Cream (Sainsbury's)

A few weeks ago I discovered the peanut buttery tub of joy that Sainsbury's surreptitously keep in their freezers, and so I couldn't help but return to my local store to find out what else I was missing...

Cookie dough and honeycomb & caramel are the other two flavours in Sainsbury's own dairy ice cream range. It was a fairly easy choice between these two tubs for me; cookie dough is fairly widespread and never as good as Ben & Jerry's, whereas there's a distinct lack of luxury extras-added honeycomb ice cream -especially since the sad loss of Morrisons' Shortbread Millionaire's mash up. 

"Caramel flavoured dairy ice cream swirled with toffee sauce, honeycomb pieces and chocolate coated shortcake pieces."

I swear the caramel ice cream was softer in this tub than in the peanut version, but I must have imagined that because there appears to be similar ingredients in both: skimmed milk, double cream, sugar, skimmed cows' milk concentrate, glucose Syrup - AKA the good stuff. Perhaps it was the sauce that made it seem looser. As well as the textural issues this toffee ripple provided, it was also problematic on the flavour front. You see, the peanut tub worked well because it had the nut brittle to counteract and cut through the sweetness, but this toffee sauce just tipped the ice cream into sickly territory. Not great.

So what would make a caramel ice cream and toffee sauce even more cloying? Oh yes, that's right, honeycomb pieces. There was an abundance of them, and they were light and crunchy... but this tub really didn't need any more sugar, and remember, this is coming from an out & proud sugar addict. Ok, ok, yes I've also recently acknowledged that I can't hack a great deal of honeycomb, so maybe if you're a Cadbury Crunchie fan this might be up your street. It's just not in my neighbourhood. 

Thankfully, redemption reared its head when it came to the chocolate coated shortcake pieces, which were both buttery and crisp. The biggest issue with biscuit in ice cream is the fact that it often goes soggy, but the coating prevented this nicely. The chocolate wasn't anything of note, but it wasn't awful either. Which reminds me, I must try the McVities nibbles soon. 

Meh. As you might've gathered, I wasn't overly fussed on this tub. Bert however really enjoyed it, and said that he'd happily have it instead of Ben & Jerry's. If we were talking about the Sainsbury's peanut tub I'd agree with him, but this one? I'd rather pay the extra 50p and have B&J's any day. 


Friday 18 August 2017

Nestle White Chocolate Crunch (Poundland)

I often moan about the lack of white chocolate bars on the market. Are the sweet-toothed big kids among us really that far and few between? In any case, none of the primary mass-manufacturers of chocolate in the UK seem to be that interested in it, with one exception to the rule - Nestle. I can't help but feel disappointed by that, namely because I don't really like Nestle's chocolate. Except Milkybar. The release (or rather re-release) of the Smarties Milkybar was a great idea on Nestlé's part, but I fear that that's about as exciting as the white chocolate market is going to get over here for now. 

Luckily, my instagram feed is full of fellow chocoholics who also love finding unusual/lesser known bars...

...and this is how I came to find this white chocolate Crunch bar. I'm aware that some newsagents sell smaller versions of it, but I haven't seen any in eons, and I don't think I've ever actually tried it before - hence the review.
The bar was imported from the Netherlands, and I found it after spotting this post by junk food genius Niki. Poundland it was, post-haste! 

Who didn't grow up on Rice Krispie cakes? If memories of sticky fingers (or every body part in my case) whilst pouring a box of puffed rice into melted chocolate wasn't a staple part of your childhood I feel sorry for you. For some reason we never made white chocolate versions, and that seems like a shame. 

Luckily Nestle have gone some way to rectify this mistake with this Rice Krispie filled bar. I loved the craggy shaped blocks and the big lettering down the smooth side - which I assume is there in case you forget what you're eating. The underside looked like it had contracted a nasty case of acne. Wait, that's not a very appetising description is it? 

Don't let my gruesome analogy put you off though, the bar was yummy in a cheap yet nostalgic kind of way. I mean, it was a far cry from the likes of the luxuriously silky Choc Affair bars. It tasted slightly chalky and especially sweet -but was also oddly comforting. The texture lived up to expectations; delivering a crunchiness that wasn't off-putting whilst simultaneously invoking memories of Sunday afternoon 'baking' sessions with my siblings. 

If you're a fellow sweet toothed white chocolate lover than this bar is well worth a trip to Poundland for! It's not about to win any awards, but it's sure to make you smile. 


Thursday 17 August 2017

NEW! Cadbury Crunchy Melt Chocolate Centre Chocolate Chip Cookies (ASDA)

Christ that's some title! Is it awful that it bugs me that it would be perfectly alliterated if it wasn't for that damn melt? They'd better be melty.

I was actually on a mission to pick up (yet another) pack of the new banoffee caramel digestives (our fifth packet so far) when I spotted these new cookies. I haven't given in to the new wafer based 'Roundies' yet, but filled cookies? Count me in.

At £1 per pack they didn't seem to bad value either, and I was torn between the trio of options: chocolate centre, soft cookie centre and double chocolate with a chocolate centre. I was tempted to buy all three, but then the rational side of my brain kicked in (there's a first time for everything) and I thought I'd try one first - I could always go back for the others after all. 

"Crunchy chocolate chip cookies with a soft melting centre."

The pack contained 6 cookies, and the inner plastic tray successfully kept them intact. Some of the cookies were more adorned than the others. I spotted the serving suggestion that they were 'even better warm' so tried one warm and one ambient. You know, for review purposes, because I'm good like that! 

The ambient cookie was far crisper than I imagined it to be. Crunchy is certainly right, although I must admit that I much prefer a soft, chewy cookie. I can't really complain about the texture though, seeing as they're marketed as 'crunchy melts'. It had an oily aftertaste to it too, and I can't say it was particularly enjoyable. As for those chocolatey chips, they were minute, and I can't even admit to tasting them.

But what about that chocolatey filling? I hear you ask. Well, the product description reads: "Biscuits with milk chocolate chips (15.4%)* and a filling (25.9%) with milk chocolate (4.5%)."

A filling with milk chocolate. Oh dear. That doesn't sound like a milk chocolate filling does it? 

It didn't taste much like one either. In fact it tasted hazelnutty to me, which is odd seeing as the ingredients list doesn't include any nuts. It wasn't particularly an issue as I love both hazelnuts and Nutella, but it didn't taste even remotely of Cadbury's chocolate. Hmm. 

Would they be better warm? 

The packet suggested microwaving it for between 10-12 seconds but warns not to heat for any longer. I don't have a digital timer on my microwave, so I obligingly counted to eleven elephants before retrieving my cookie and waiting the designated minute before munching. 

The centre was slightly better warm, but it didn't really improve the cookie at all. Meh. 

I shan't bother with the other cookies in this range. I feel like the Cadbury packaging is a clever ploy from Mondelez to lure us chocoholics to buy another one of their very mediocre products. These 'Crunchy Melts' are clearly made with cheap ingredients, and without the nostalgia factor that other mass-marketed biscuits have, they're nothing shy of a disappointment.


*My arse. 1.54% more like. 

Wednesday 16 August 2017

Sugar Free Peanut Butter Crunch Bars (Sweet Victory Products)

A week or so ago I received the following message from Sweet Victory Products:

"Hi Amy,we noticed you are a fan of peanut butter and was wondering if you would like to sample some of our sugar free peanut butter crunch bars for a review?"

Well, of course I did, how could I refuse such a gracious offer? A couple of days later a parcel arrived containing a purple pick and mix bag...

The bars are made by an American brand, Atkinsons, who make all sorts of sugar-free sweets. As you may have gathered, I've recently been venturing into sugar free sweets (courtesy of Sweets Without) but had never come across peanut butter flavoured ones!

"Crispy, crunchy and completely peanut buttery! Peanut Butter Bars are packed with our famous peanut butter and handmade with Splenda."

Uh oh. That sounded remarkably similar to the description of my peanut butter nemesis: the Butterfinger bar. They did however smell extremely peanut buttery and so I put my preconceptions aside to give them a good go!

They tasted delicious! The peanut butter was prominent throughout, with a resounding sweetness. I tried my hardest to suck them as I would a normal boiled sweet, but due to their size (and the overwhelming temptation to crunch) it wasn't long before I cracked them open between my molars. 

Unlike the Butterfinger bar, they didn't make my jaw ache and were fairly soft. Without the chocolate coating, they were also far less sickly than the Butterfingers, however, they did lodge themselves between my teeth -making them fairly awkward to eat in public. Fortunately, I'm not particularly ladylike so I've kept on eating them regardless, but I thought I should let you know what you're letting yourself in for with these Atkinsons peanut butter crunch bars!

At £1.59 for 100g I think these are excellent value for money, and are perfect if you want a sweet (yet sugar free) peanut butter fix to keep in your handbag (or car). As far as I'm aware, we have nothing similar to these in the U.K so please do head over to Sweet Victory's website where you can benefit from 10% off your first order with the code AMYS10!


Thank you to Sweet Victory for the samples!