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Yummy Recipes with Necco Sweethearts

One of our favorite pastimes to do here at Blair Candy is try new recipes using surprising candy. Since Valentine’s Day is right around the corner, we decided to find some unique recipes using the Valentine’s Day favorite, Necco Sweethearts! Sweethearts have been around for decades, so it’s no surprise that people have found new and tasty ways to use this lovely treat! Take a look at these delicious recipes from some of our favorite blogs!

Sweetheart Martinis

From:

http://www.babble.com/best-recipes/valentines-conversation-heart-martinis-for-the-adults/

  • 4 ounces strawberry vodka
  • 2 ounces peach schnapps
  • 2 ounces pineapple juice
  • Cherries & Conversation Hearts for garnish
  • Pink sanding sugar for the rims

Directions

1. Rim two martini glasses with pink sanding sugar.

2. Mix the vodka, schnapps and pineapple juice in a shaker with two or three ice cubes and pour through a strainer into the rimmed glasses. Garnish with cherries and hearts.

Conversation Heart Bark

From:

http://thedecoratedcookie.com/2012/01/partying-with-conversation-heart-bark/

  • Silicone ice cube tray (hearts if you can find one)
  • White chocolate chips or candy melts, any color
  • Conversation hearts
  • Ziploc
  • Hammer or mallet
  • Disposable decorating bag
  • Scissors

Directions

step one: crush your hearts
Oh, that sounds so sad. Place some conversation hearts in a Ziploc and smash with the hammer or mallet. Best to do this over a cutting board or dish towel so you don’t destroy the counter. Sprinkle a layer of crushed hearts on the bottom of each heart in the tray.

step two: melt your chocolate
Add some chocolate chips or candy melts to the disposable decorating bag. Fold over the top so they don’t fall out of the bag. Don’t fill the bag too much, use about 1/2 cup of chips or whatever fits comfortably in the bag. Microwave at 50 percent power for a minute and a half. Massage the chips and keep microwaving at 30, then 20 second intervals just until the chips are melted.

step three: add your chocolate
Snip the tip of the decorating bag and pipe the melted chocolate on top of the crushed hearts to fill the tray. Pick up both ends of the tray and gently stamp it flat on the counter to tamp down the chocolate. Let set well, a couple hours. Pop out of the tray and that’s it!

Sweetheart Rice Krispies

From:

http://www.sheknows.com/food-and-recipes/articles/983695/funfetti-conversation-heart-rice-krispies-recipe

  • 1 package marshmallows (about 40 large ones)
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 6 cups Rice Krispies cereal
  • 2 cups mini-marshmallows
  • About 1/2 cup sprinkles
  • Conversation hearts
  • Melted white chocolate

Directions

  1. Heat butter in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Once melted, add in large marshmallows. Heat until mixture is fully melted, stirring constantly, about 5-6 minutes.
  2. Pour the cereal, mini-marshmallows and sprinkles in a large mixing bowl. Pour the melted marshmallow mixture over the Rice Krispies and stir to combine. Add additional sprinkles if you’d like.
  3. Using your hands, press the mixture into a large 9 x 13-inch glass-baking pan. Push it down with your hands to smooth out lumps. While the mixture is still warm, press in conversation hearts all over the Rice Krispies.
  4. Chill Rice Krispies for about an hour. Once chilled, stamp out hearts with heart-shaped cookie cutters. Drizzle hearts with white chocolate and enjoy!

The Lovely Story of Conversation Hearts

Every Valentine’s Day, there are a few things everyone expects to receive: flowers, a card, and Conversation Hearts from Necco! Also known as Sweethearts, Conversation Hearts are the wildly popular candies that are perfect for expressing how you feel in sweet little bite-size treats. Why? Each heart has a small message of love printed on the front, making them adorable delights for your own “sweetheart.” Even though everyone is familiar with Conversation Hearts, not everyone knows the story behind them. Believe us; the history is just as charming as the candy itself!

A man named Oliver R. Chase invented a special machine, designed to cut wafer candy into different shapes, in 1847, and soon opened up a factory to produce mass quantities of this novelty candy. In 1866, Oliver’s brother, Daniel, had the idea to print cheeky sayings on the candy. Since the candy grew in popularity for weddings, the sayings included: “Married in White, you have chosen right” and “Married in Pink, he will take a drink.” This type of candy only became more ubiquitous in weddings, and it eventually evolved into the heart-shaped candy we all know and love.

What’s really interesting is the fact that the Chase Brothers didn’t just make candy hearts. In the early days of their candy production business, they produced lozenges, horseshoes, watches, baseballs…even postcard candy! Even though they were originally pastel candy hearts, they have since changed their recipe, making them easier to chew and much more vibrant. These aren’t the only changes that have been made to Conversation Hearts. In the 1990s, Necco, the company that now owns the hearts, wanted to update some of the sayings and retire some of the dated ones. Necco accepts suggestions each year for new sayings, a tradition that continues to this day.

The Merry History of Christmas Candy Canes

Christmas candy canes are woven into the fabric of the holiday season, and just the sight of them puts you into the Christmas spirit. At Blair Candy, we make sure to stock plenty of candy canes, as they are easily the most popular kinds of candy we sell during the holiday season. Have you ever wondered where the candy cane tradition came from? We certainly have, so we decided to dig in and see what kind of story was behind the delicious peppermint treat.Christmas Candy Canes

The exact origin of the candy cane is a little murky. Stories have been passed down from generation to generation about the backstory. The most common tale involves a choirmaster in Cologne, Germany, in 1670. Wanting to keep the noisy children in his church quiet, he decided to ask a local candymaker to make candy sticks to be handed out to the children. In order to make it acceptable for kids to have candy in church, the choirmaster asked the candymaker to shape the candy to look like a shepherd’s crook. Soon, the popularity of these candy canes grew to all other parts of Europe.

There is another legend about candy canes that is often told. According to the story, a candymaker in Indiana wanted to make a religious candy, so he devised the candy cane. He colored the candy white to symbolize the Virgin Birth and red to symbolize the blood of Jesus. He shaped it to look like the letter J to represent the name of Jesus, as well as a shepherd’s crook.

As great as these stories are, they probably aren’t true. According to urban legends reference site Snopes.com, neither legend can be confirmed. The truth is, no one really knows exactly where they came from, but perhaps it is better that way. You can create your own traditions and memories!

Head Start on the Holidays – Christmas Peeps

We know what you’re thinking. “How could you be writing about Christmas? It isn’t even Thanksgiving!” Believe us – we don’t want to be thinking about Christmas any more than you do, but it’s always nice to avoid last-minute aggravation and scrambling. In this post, we’re going to shine a spotlight on one of the most popular kinds of candy, Peeps. Marshmallow Peep Snowmen

Just Born’s Peeps are primarily seen as an Easter holiday candy. Just the sight of those adorable yellow marshmallow chicks evokes the warmer temperatures and flower-scented air of Easter. For Christmas, the folks at Just Born have kept the same level of charm and applied it to well-known Christmas imagery. What Christmas would be complete without snowmen or reindeer? Not much of one, we say! And Just Born agrees! Let’s take a look at this yummy collection of Christmas Peeps!

    - Peeps Candy Cane Flavor – Talk about a match made in heaven! These incredibly tasty Peeps are shaped just like their trademark chicks, but they are infused with crunchy crushed candy cane pieces.

    - Gingerbread Men Peeps – Gingerbread is one of the many flavors closely associated with Christmas, and these Peeps are packed with it! These adorable little gingerbread men are the perfect stocking stuffer for the cookie lover in your home!

    - Marshmallow Peep Snowmen – These little guys are adorable! They look just like snow but they taste just like a marshmallowy heaven! These tasty Peep Snowmen certainly give Frosty a run for his money!

    - Marshmallow Peep Trees – O tannenbaum! Just the sight of Christmas trees transports you to your childhood, furiously ripping open wrapping paper to find the treasure inside. With these yummy Marshmallow Peep Trees, you can relive those memories all season long.

    - Marshmallow Peeps Chocolate Mousse Reindeer – Just when you thought Just Born couldn’t come up with anything more adorable, they go and create these amazing Reindeer Peeps! Rich, velvety chocolate flavor bursts from these cute treats. You know Dasher and Dancer and Prancer and the lot – get to know these Peeps!

    Give a Sweet Corporate Candy Gift!

    If you run a business, you know how hard it can become to think of new and exciting gifts to give to your employees and clients. You’ve gone down the typical route and simply can’t think of anything new to have engraved, and now you’re stuck with nothing to give that shows your appreciation for your employees. Don’t worry! At BlairCandy.com, we have some ideas we think are perfect for your company. Why are they perfect? Well, they all involve our delicious candy!

    We’ve curated a special selection suitable as corporate gifts for anyone at your business or organization. Here are just a few of our yummy corporate gifts!

    Do your employees love to reminisce about the good ol’ days? Or perhaps you run a nostalgia shop and want to keep that theme running for your gift. Take a look at our Can of Nostalgic Candy! We packed our favorite old fashioned candy into a reusable tin for lovers of yesteryear.

    Everyone loves a great movie, and what goes better with movies than tasty snacks? Our Movie Theater Candy Gift Tub puts all the candy you love to get at your local movie house into a great plastic popcorn tub that you can use again and again!

    Batter up! Every workplace has the guy or girl who simply can’t get enough baseball. Why not treat him or her with our Can of Ball Park Treats? Specially crafted using hand-picked fan favorites, this tin features everything you need for a great afternoon at the ballpark. What a home run!

    Top Five Less Common Halloween Candy

    Every year, people come to BlairCandy.com looking for those perennial Halloween favorites. People love our selection of classic Reese’s peanut butter pumpkins, Brach’s candy corn, and our great Hershey’s All Time Great Mix candy assortment. We love these candies just as much as the next Halloweener, but we also love go off the beaten path and look for some new and unique Halloween candy. Who knows – maybe these examples will become your new favorites!

    Bloody Bites Vampire Candy & Fangs – Everyone likes their Halloween a little spooky, and what better way to scare your friends then with these great vampire fangs! These fangs come with watermelon flavored gooey candy inside, so when you bite down it looks like you’ve just finished your first victim!

    Lightning Bug Gummi Candy – Not as scary as a creepy crawly spider, but definitely a spooky delight! Lightning Bug Gummi Candy comes with a special pair of reusable tongs that makes the gummi worm light up.

    Charms Candy Corn Lollipops – Most people love candy corn during the Halloween season, but we found a way to make the great flavor of candy corn last longer – lollipops! These candy corn pops from Charm have all the same flavor as the candy corn you love, but packed in a long-lasting lollipop!

    Gummi Brains – Zombies are always one of the most popular costumes on Halloween, and if you’re like us, you want to be as authentically scary as you can. With these new Gummi Brains, you can be the best zombie you can be!

    Reese’s Sugar Free Peanut Butter Cups – If you love Halloween candy but don’t love all that sugar, have we got the surprise for you! We now carry Reese’s Sugar Free Peanut Butter Cups! These cups feature the same great flavor loved around the world – but without all the sugar of regular Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups. Give them a try – you won’t regret it!

    Tootsie Rolls: All Wrapped Up!

    If you’re like us, you are absolutely inundated with Tootsie Rolls during Halloween, and with good reason. These small chocolatey snacks are the perfect size when you need to satisfy that midday chocolate craving. They also are great to keep in candy dishes, desk drawers, or in your son or daughter’s lunch bag. As a matter of fact, there really isn’t a place where Tootsie Rolls won’t fit!

    Since Tootsie Rolls are individually wrapped (they delightfully spin when you unwrap them!), the one thing you’re left with after indulging in a roll or two is the distinctive brown, red, and white wrapper. While you could simply throw out the wrappers, where’s the fun in that? We found some great tutorials online, showing fun and unique ways to use the Tootsie wrapper after you’ve eaten the candy.

    Over at Plum Pudding, they have a wonderful post detailing how to turn a bag of Tootsie Roll wrappers into a stylish belt. All you need are common household craft items like scissors, packing tape, and double stick tape and 2 d-rings, which can be found at your favorite fabric store.

    Poking around eHow, we found this great lesson about creating those crazy purses and bags out of candy wrappers. You’ve seen these bags in stores everywhere, but you might not have known that you can make them yourself. All you need is a free day and a LOT of Tootsie Roll wrappers. Once you master the initial fold technique, you’ll be on your way to having a “sweet” purse!

    Do you have any Tootsie Roll wrapper craft ideas? Let us know in the comments!

    Beach-Ready Snacks

    Don’t worry – summer’s not over yet! Even though fall is looming, the air is still warm and the sun is still, making it the perfect time to take a weekend getaway to the beach. You’ll need the basics: sunblock, swimsuits, towels, flip flops, etc. But before you get those together, you’ll need to make sure you have the absolute necessity packed – snacks!

    Spending the day in the sun and swimming in the ocean can take a lot of energy, so it’s important to have a good supply of tasty snacks on hand. The thing to remember is you need to make sure what you bring can withstand the heat from the sun. Unfortunately, that means no chocolate. But it’s ok! There are plenty of snacks you can bring!

    Barnum Animal Crackers: These classic crackers have been an American staple for over a hundred years, and it’s easy to see why. These tasty little treats are perfect for on-the-go snacking, thanks to the handy string handle.

    Keebler Cheese & Peanut Butter Crackers: Not only are these sandwich crackers delicious, they are also a good source of protein and calcium. You can’t beat that!

    Twizzlers: This low-fat candy has the perfect blend of fruit flavor and sweetness that makes it ideal of a lazy afternoon in the sand. Bonus tip: bite the ends off and you have an edible straw!

    Planters Dry Roasted Peanuts: Quick, easy, and no melty mess! Planters Dry Roasted Peanuts can stave off hunger while you soak up some rays and also provide you with the nutrients and energy you need to ride the waves.

    What kind of snacks do you like to bring to the beach? Leave us a comment and let us in on your secret!

    Chocolate Gold Coins: Make Chores and More a Bit More Fun!

    Helping out around the house is something that many kids take to when they’re very young, but begin to dread soon enough. I have yet to meet a child who loves taking out the garbage, cleaning up their room, clearing the dinner table, or sweeping the sidewalk. There are plenty of much more fun things to be doing, and kids are very driven by fun! But as much as part of our job as parents is ensuring that our kids are given enough time to play and relax, it is also our duty to make sure they know that chores are a part of life. The garbage doesn’t take itself out, and the dinner table doesn’t clear itself. But everything gets done much more quickly when everyone pitches in! And that’s precisely why offering a little extra incentive can make your life a lot easier.

    Don’t get me wrong – I don’t think we should teach kids that every little thing they do deserves a reward. They should learn that life comes with some boring, tedious, or difficult things that need doing, and the only true ‘payment’ we receive is that they get done. But if your kiddo goes above and beyond to get something done early, or does a really great job, it can also be fun for you both to give them something in return. Our suggestion? Gold chocolate coins! And more specifically, gold chocolate coins that they can use to ‘buy’ something they really want.

    When we get older, the things we want can shift pretty drastically from what we wanted when we were 8 or 9 years old. Back then, we wanted to stay up a little later, play with our toys a little longer, and have an extra scoop of ice cream for dessert, with extra hot fudge sauce for good measure. (OK, we still want that ice cream!) With hard-earned chocolate gold coins, you can give your children an opportunity to ‘buy’ these privileges, making chore time seem a little less like work.

    Perhaps making their bed will earn them one chocolate quarter, while taking the dog for a long walk is worth a chocolate half dollar. A report card full of A’s and B’s? A small handful of chocolate money is in order! They could also earn chocolate money they didn’t even know they were ‘working’ for, such as a surprise coin or two for helping a friend or behaving in church. In these instances, it’s not so much about making them think that every good deed comes with a payment, rather letting them know that you noticed they did the right thing.

    Now that most kids are home for summer break, they’ll have even more opportunities to help out around the house. And they’ll probably want to ‘buy’ even more things as well, such as an extra hour to play video games at night, or even an option to skip their least favorite chore for a few days. Or, they might have a hard time saving up because eating their ‘money’ is just too irresistible!

    Sunday is National Lollipop Day 2014!

    Once Independence Day has come and gone, there’s a bit of holiday lull for a while. On one hand, the advantage to this is that we get to save some money. Holidays have a habit of getting expensive, and it’s good to let the old bank account recover! But on the other hand, it’s always nice to have a fun holiday to look forward to, and knowing the next one is in the distant future can be disheartening. And that is precisely why we think it’s so much fun to celebrate those much smaller holidays that no one ever heard of before the internet!

    Did you know there’s a National Bird Day, National Chip and Dip Day, Step in a Puddle and Splash Your Friends Day, and even a Reach as High as You Can Day? All these, and countless more, have been imagined up and posted all over the internet for all who may wish to celebrate them! With hundreds, if not thousands, of these fun holidays out there, it is somewhat impossible to do something special for them all. However, it is possible to choose a few favorites (I’m a big fan of Eat What You Want Day, personally), and celebrate them for all they’re worth. And one of those holidays we definitely think is worth honoring is coming up this Sunday – National Lollipop Day!

    Don’t worry; this won’t be an expensive holiday. You don’t need to buy a mountain of presents, or prepare a 6-course feast. All you need to do is grab a few suckers and sweeten up your weekend one lick at a time. Haven’t had a lollipop in a while and aren’t sure what’s out there? Browse our extensive selection of yummy lollipops and pick a few favorites!

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