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Candy Cane Match Up!

15 Dec

Picked up a couple artisan candy canes recently and finally tried them! From left to right, Doscher’s, Hammonds, Doschoer’s candy canes. While both are tasty, I prefer the Hammond’s cane. It is noticeably more minty and has a more dense, sucker potential. You’ll notice that it is also a touch pink in the middle and lends a very nice finish to a special holiday treat. On the other hand, Doscher’s cane has an airy interior and will find a place in any candy cruncher’s heart (you know them and hear them!).

You can find Doscher’s at Brewer’s Yard Kroger in the candy cane aisle and Hammond’s at Bink Davies.

Brewer’s Yard Kroger
150 W. Sycamore St., Columbus, OH, 43215

Bink Davies
668 N High St, Columbus, OH 43215

German Christmas Cookies in Ohio!

12 Dec

Have I mentioned that I have an extreme weakness for seasonal food stuffs? I have? Let me show you why!

Bierberg Bakery is a gem of a business located in German Village.  Having missed them last year, I had to get reacquainted this season. Little did I know, they are open from mid-October (!!) to December 30th every year. Edible Columbus and Columbus Underground have covered them recently and you can read about it here and here.

The above is a selection of Christmas cookies from Bierberg Bakery’s repertoire. From top, clockwise: vanilla stick, almond crescent, hazelnut drop, walnut drop, almond macaroon, and wilhemson. From previous seasons, the almond macaroon and the vanilla stick have been my die-hard favorites. If you eat the last one, I will get my revenge. Both have an addictive chew that is the delicate line between candy and cookie. But this year, Jenny stuck a couple new ones in my one pound selection ($16). Jenny’s favorite, the almond crescent is at once buttery and light, almost like an almond shortbread. And since I love the almond macaroons, it’s a no brainer that I love the walnut drops. It’s a little more dense with ground walnuts but the egg white and sugar treatment gives it the chew of a great macaroon.

I see at least another trip to Bierberg before this holiday season is over!

Handmade Holiday Candy!

8 Dec

I’m not much of a Halloween candy eater but I luuuuuv Christmas candy. Maybe it’s the clean taste of peppermint, but it’s more likely is the glassy, translucent treads of hard candy. What could be more appealing that old fashioned, brightly colored, candy happiness?

Despite this love for candy canes, I’ve been really put off by the mass market, matte, sugar bombs that drearily line grocery store and box store aisles. I wanted a candy looked like it had a big peppermint punch. And it had to be red and white, or better yet, all white, and maybe some green if I were feeling generous.

I did my internet based due diligence and the Hammond’s candy makers kept coming up. I figured that they might be the holy grail of Christmas candy having been previously carried by the Dean & Deluca holiday catalogue* and Sur La Table. After consulting the Twitter, no one seemed to know where I could find artisan holiday candy. /sadface By sheer curiosity, I stopped into Bink Davies and LO and BEHOLD, they have individual Hammond’s candy canes in Peppermint, Cinnamon, and Cherry for $2.95 each. I picked up a Peppermint cane (below, in plastic) and a bag of assorted mini ribbon candy ($7.95 or thereabouts). Aren’t they GORGEOUS?!

After such a lucky find, the candy cane rage was subdued only to be stoked again at Brewer’s Yard Kroger. A single display of Doscher’s Old Fashioned Canes. The box was pretty full of individuals boxes of five canes ($2.99) so if you hurry down, you might snag some. I guess Docher’s is better known for their taffy, but in keeping with locavore spirit, they are from Cincinnati! Each cane was packaged in an unsealed sleeve which is promising in the quest for candy with a shelf-life. If either of these canes taste as great as they look, my sweet tooth will rejoice as my dentist groans.

Behold my candy neurosis: has anyone found crooked peppermint candy canes in plain white? Would it be too much to ask if the ends were twisted rather than cut? Many thanks!!

*Guess who is in this year’s Dean & Deluca holiday catalogue? None other that Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams!

Candied Pecans, Two Ways

8 Dec

I can’t believe Thanksgiving flew by and now it’s almost time for Christmas! I love this time of year for the gaily colored lights and for the excuse to give in a little to excess. If you don’t know, I’m a seasonal candy junkie. I buy seasonal editions of peanut M&Ms and candy canes like I buy muskmelon and sweet corn in August. But as much as I love eating all that sugar, sometimes I just want a hint of sweet, a snack with more substance. I remember the delicious Nuts4Nuts carts in NYC and how the little packets of just candied peanuts warmed my hands and belly on the subway platform.

Enter the Candied Pecan. Continue reading