12.11.07 Sponge Candy

For the uninitiated, sponge candy (aka honeycomb or seafoam candy) is a quandary. Here you have a lovely lightweight block of something covered thick and dense in high quality dark chocolate, with no idea what to expect inside. It is too light for it’s size- odd for a chocolate covered candy. One bite explains everything. That crunch reveals a firm interior that crumbles away like sandstone, only tasting of caramel-y, toasty sugar. 2-3 bites to a piece, and you’re done, wondering why no one ever told you about this wondrous thing before.

It’s so hard to explain, and there are so many ways to get it wrong. It should never be rock hard, never difficult to bite through, never chewy inside, never shiny inside, never beige or yellow inside- only the darker colors of cooked sugars are allowed. The interior should crumble easily, and melt slightly when pressed with your tongue, kind of like a fresh malted-milk ball. There must be a thick coating of high-quality chocolate- milk or dark is your choice. I’ve preferred the dark since I was a little kid. The English have an impostor candy bar from Cadbury called “Crunchie”. I had one once, and it seemed to break every rule of good honeycomb and I never had one again.

The only way to get this done right is by people who make it by hand in small batches with care. It was more common in CA (try Chocolate Heaven @ Pier 39 in SFO) where I grew up, and it took ages to find it here in OR. There are a couple of shops on the coast who sell it, but no one local to me makes it anymore. I thought I was going to be in a honeycomb wasteland for the rest of my life.

Then I discovered SpongeCandy.com! The answer to my prayers during the cold months- they only ship Nov 1- sometime in the spring in order to avoid customers receiving melting candy on warm porches. They do milk and dark, in just about any combination, and the candy is consistently perfect. I’m not kidding here. It’s amazing that they get this kind of quality from such a persnickety product. The folks who make the stuff in Buffalo call it Sponge Candy, which I’d never heard applied to the Honeycomb candy I grew up with.  No matter what they call it, it’s the best anywhere.  They pack and ship so carefully, the candy is always in great shape when it arrives.

If you want something different, and like chocolate, give this a try. You won’t be sorry- it’s the best!


1 comment so far

  1. Gary Whitt on

    Sponge Candy certainly has been persnickety enough to give us a lot of challenges to overcome but now, after 22 years we like to think we know what we’re doing. It’s nice when someone else thins so, too. Sandy and I thank you for the positive review. -The CandyMaker

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