Category Archives: DESSERT

PINGVIN LÆKKERMIXEN

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Average Food Blog does not shy away from niche international foodstuffs, and after a Danish friend left a half-finished bag of these Scandi snacks in my home, it provided a perfect opportunity to slip back into a subgenre of mediocre food writing we know so well.

First things first: on the packaging reads the words ‘Blød SKUM’. This means ‘blood SCUM’, and I have no desire to hear the views of either a) Google Translate or b) Danes as a means of proving me otherwise.

The pingvin after which these sweets are so named is also illustrated on said packaging, taking on a downright threatening pose. Armed with knife and fork, instruments of no traditional role in the eating of liquorice sweets, it is a blatant admission that the blood scum in question is of human origin.

As it transpires, the liquorice/blood scum mix is very pleasant.

I am an unashamed Liquorice Allsort fan, against all whims of fashion and good taste, and despite the addition of blood scum, these are very much playing on a similar stage. In fact, with all due respect to Bassett’s, the murderous polar bird sweets are the headliners, to Allsorts’ mid-afternoon set.

There is a broader palette of flavours here, from a deeper, more oaky liquorice than the British tongue is quite used to, to the tang of fruit. The sugary bits are more subtle than Bassett’s, more an exciting courtship than a hook-up in a pub toilet.

While this is not a Euro sweetmeat selection on a par with Isleri + Eurocrem or even Salam de Biscuiti, it is a solid, varied and worthy effort from our north European neighbours. Ultimately, though, not one for the squeamish.

7/10

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FERRERO ROCHER

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Reader, I know full well what you want me to write in this blog.

You want me to go straight in on The Ambassador, don’t you.

You want me to put down on this niche blog what you’ve always wanted to express, namely this: fuck you, The Ambassador. Fuck your impeccable taste in mediocre sweetmeats, your mediocre moneyed guests with shit accents and over-enthusiasm for your mediocre sweetmeats.

Fuck everything you stand for, The Ambassador, you utter besuited prick. Fuck the diplomatic codes of politeness, clandestine soft intelligence gathering, sweetmeats arranged like ancient tombs.

But I can’t express any of that with honesty, no matter how much you might want it. Average Food Blog cannot be the crowd-pleaser you so eagerly crave.

Because Ferrero Rocher, if you look beyond all the abject wankery of Ferrero’s marketing department, are pretty decent.

Sure, it’s hardly the world’s best chocolate or premium nuts involved in the mix, but the combination of flavours and textures is somewhat compelling, especially within the context of finding yourself lolling in the sort of advanced state of passivity that only major Christian festivals can bring.

They are not the best of their food genre but nonetheless are indelibly linked to serial eating, much in the same way that Pringles are not a leading crisp but have the same effect.

Of course, there is some possibility that mind-altering chemicals have been injected into each and every bobbly, spherical melting pot of doom to make me feel this way. That ultimately I’m being duped, that the powers that be have got their claws into AFB in a way that strongly suggests the direct or at very least implied involvement of yes, you’ve guessed it, The Ambassador.

OK OK, fuck The Ambassador. You happy now?

Season’s Greetings to all on the internet.

FERRERO ROCHER: 7/10

MRS CRIMBLE

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I won’t hear a bad word said against Mrs Crimble. Her macaroons are delectable.

But look; I was as suspicious as the next baked goods consumer at the advent of the Mrs Crimble’s cranberry macaroon. My guard immediately fell to pieces on mouth entry. It’s arguably an improvement on the coconut model; an innovation hitherto thought impossible.

Much gluten-free food is overpriced, pointless, weird-textured twaddle peddled by cynics at those who are fearful of their bodies, their minds, and life. But Mrs Crimble applies herself with love and attention to detail that must be recognised in the top echelons of media that Average Food Blog surely embodies.

Sure, there are lesser vehicles in her garage: the bakewell slices are strong performers if not quite reaching peak Crimble, and the flapjacks are derivative of every pre-packaged flapjack in Christendom: decidedly mediocre. But she has not lost my trust while she continues to roll her macaroons off the production line.

If Mrs Crimble got herself into a war, I’d be on the front line with her, battling gamely against the amorphous armies of gluten with a joyous mastication of macaroon in my gob.

MRS CRIMBLE’S COCONUT MACAROONS: 9/10

MRS CRIMBLE’S CRANBERRY MACAROONS: 9.5/10

FIG ROLLS

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Ladies and gentlemen, before I start typing solely in capital letters, I want you to strap yourself in for a stunning revelation.

OK? Good. Off we go.

DRIED FIGS AND FIG ROLLS TASTE EXACTLY THE SAME. THE ONLY DIFFERENCE OF ANY KIND IS THAT DRIED FIGS ARE SLIGHTLY CHEWIER, BUT THIS, AS IT TURNS OUT, IS AN ENJOYABLE ADVANTAGE.

THE MAIN IMPLICATION OF WHICH BEING THAT THERE NEVER WAS ANY NEED FOR THE ‘ROLL’ ELEMENT OF THE FIG ROLL.

I REPEAT: THERE NEVER WAS ANY NEED FOR THE ‘ROLL’ ELEMENT OF THE FIG ROLL.

LOGICALLY, THIS LEADS TO A REVEALING OF THE SECOND, NO LESS SHOCKING IMPLICATION: THERE WAS NEVER ANY NEED FOR FIG ROLLS AT ALL.

WE HAVE BEEN SWINDLED FOR ALL THIS TIME, PEOPLE.

SOMEONE*, SOMEWHERE** IS RESPONSIBLE FOR THIS HIDEOUS PULLING OF SOFT PASTRY-TEXTURED WOOL OVER JUST SO MANY EYES.

I’M SORRY FOR RUINING YOUR DAY.

DRIED FIGS/ FIG ROLLS: 6/10
*THE ILLUMINATI, IN CONJUNCTION WITH THE FLOUR INDUSTRY

**I’M SAYING AN INDUSTRIAL ESTATE JUST OUTSIDE OF SWINDON

MALTED MILK BISCUITS

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some malted milks, yesterday

When I was little, the non-chocolatey biscuits were always left languishing on the biscuit plate once all their chocolatey mates had been snapped up, a bit like children in care at the end of a school day. Just like athlete Kriss Akabusi, Big Issue founder John Bird, actor Samantha Morton and my own adopted uncle, however, malted milk biscuits go to show that growing up in such circumstances is far from a barrier to future greatness.

Malted milk biscuits are defiantly unglamorous; they are the Jeremy Corbyn of the biscuit world. They will win no prizes, and let’s not kid ourselves: in a general biscuit election they will always be beaten by a posturing, overrated Bourbon or a solid, straight-down-the-line chocolate digestive. But malted milks are quietly, understadedly classy. The epithet ‘malted’ expresses a certain rural, artisanal wholesomeness and refers to the pleasing, low-lying barley ambience imparted by the biscuit, and the milk element, whilst lying at a mere 1%, provides a certain je ne sais quoi. I could happily eat a whole pack of malted milk biscuits in a single sitting. They are nice. But they are not Nice – that is another type of biscuit. (Incidentally, is the word ‘Nice’ pronounced ‘nice’ or ‘nice’? Answers on a postcard, please.)

What’s more, in what is surely the ultimate test for any biscuit, malted milks are eminently dunkable: they cohere in their original shape and can withstand a fairly vigorous dunking, whilst at the same time becoming infused with tea. (If you dunk biscuits in coffee you are a monster.)

Malted milks are the thinking person’s biscuit. If you are the kind of moron who watches the Kardashians, listens to stuff by Simon Cowell, reads FHM and lols at Dapper Laughs, then fuck off and have an Oreo.

Malted milk biscuits: 10/10

ZYDO WAFER CAKES WITH COCO-NUT

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My continental foodstore sweetmeat odyssey has taken me to some mighty highs and some punishing lows.

I have arrived now at Zydo Wafer Cakes with Coco-nut (sic). There is everything here: wafer, cacao cream, two E-numbers, coco-nut. The implication regarding the latter is that the manufacturers are describing coconut; this much can be ascertained from a three illustrations of coconuts on the packaging.

Wafer-based sweetmeats are a common sight in continental foodstores – but Zydo must be praised for the addition of coco-nut, which in future years should go down as a real breakthrough in the marketplace, nay, a revolution of sorts.

As for the experience, it’s a damn solid sweetmeat, and although featuring a Sahara-dry mid-section and desiccated outer covering, easily dissolves in the mouth. Whether food is meant to dissolve in the mouth at all is surely a question for another day. The flavour is a nondescript yet strangely reassuring sweetness, with the most clandestine hint of the tropics.

If you are prone to migraines, eating three consecutively gives you the beginnings of one, requiring some sort of herbal tea mitigation, and for this health risk, Zydo Wafer Cakes with Coco-nut shall be marked down a single point.

6/10