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Easter Candy

A Sweet Look at the History of Jelly Beans

Nothing screams “Easter!” quite like a delicious handful of jelly beans, don’t you think?! Kids and adults alike love munching on these little sugary sweet treats, full of both sweet and savory flavors. While fruity tends to be the classic go-to, candy producers such as Jelly Belly have been a bit more creative in their tastes, with flavors such as toothpaste, glass, and lint!

Regardless of whether you opt for fruity flavors such as lemon or watermelon, or you dare to indulge on those unique tastes, it still remains a mystery as to where these little guys originated! However, we do know a few things…

Throughout the centuries, jelly beans have taken many forms before becoming what we know today. In ancient Rome, Turkish Delights were comparable to today’s modern jelly beans. Turkish Delights were made of a jelly-like sugar and rosewater mixture coated with powdered sugar. Over the decades this recipe was adapted to include different flavors and ingredients. Somewhere in history – though it is unknown where – a candy coating was introduced, which paved the way for jelly beans as we now know them.

Americans first began munching on today’s modern jelly beans during the Civil War when they were commonly sent to soldiers as a sweet (un-meltable) treat. In the 1930s, jelly beans made their way into Easter baskets. They were small, flavorful, and again, didn’t melt, making them the perfect spring-time treat! Today, Americans consume close to 16 billion jellybeans at Easter time.

While the true history of jelly beans remains a mystery, there’s no denying that we sure do love this classic Easter candy!

Perfect Your Easter Egg Hunt!

Once the weather starts to warm up after the long, cold winter, we all come down with a little spring fever! Those first days where the temperature reaches the 50s seem like a gift from heaven, and pretty soon, we know we’ll be seeing flowers sprouting! One of the best parts of spring is the Easter holiday. What says “warm weather” quite like an annual Easter egg hunt?

Easter egg hunting became a popular Easter tradition in America in the 1700s. German immigrants settled in Pennsylvania and brought with them this quirky annual Osterhase tradition. Soon, the fun family activity gained popularity all over the nation. Originally, hard-boiled eggs were used, but as time went on, delicious Easter candy was incorporated into the hunt.

At Blair Candy, we want you to have an Easter eggs hunt that your family will remember forever. Here are some yummy treats you can integrate into your hunt!

  • Wonka Outdoor Egg Hunt Kit – Willy Wonka does it again with this easy to use Egg Hunt Kit! This kit comes with everything you need to kickstart your Easter egg hunt.
  • Wonka Indoor Egg Hunt Kit – The thing about spring is you never know when it will be a rainy day. This kit from Wonka is specifically designed for indoor hunts, just in case your outdoor hunt is a wash!
  • Easter Egg Hunt Candy – This massive bag contains a mix of all the candy you and your family love. Be sure to be well-stocked!

Chocolate Easter Eggs: The Sweetest Selection!

When we think of Easter candy, there are a few things that come to mind straight away. These include jelly beans, marshmallow Peeps, and of course, chocolate Easter eggs. While jelly beans were once available in just two varieties – spice and fruit – today we can find jelly beans from many of our favorite candy brands, including Mike and Ike and Jolly Rancher jelly beans. As for marshmallow Peeps? They have expanded as well. And not just the way they expand if you microwave them! But the truly indulgent side of Easter candy belongs to chocolate eggs, and BlairCandy.com offers an array of mouthwatering delights that every bunny will enjoy. Here are a few top picks…

Gardner’s Chocolate Eggs: To simply breathe in the intoxicating aroma of Gardner’s eggs is to know you have some seriously top quality chocolate on your hands! We have offered Gardner’s eggs every Easter for many years, and the demand for these rich and creamy confections never wavers. Choose from Chocolate Fudge Nut, Butter Cream, Coconut, All Nut, Cashew Meltaway, Fruit and Nut, Maple Cream and Nuts, and my favorite, Peanut Butter Meltaway.

Zitner’s Chocolate Eggs: Another name that many turn to Easter after Easter is Zitner’s. A candy company whose beginnings were more than 90 years ago, many of us in the Northeast have been enjoying Zitner’s as far back as we can remember! Best known for their insanely delicious Butter Krak eggs, we also have their dark chocolate covered Marshmallow eggs available. But you should act fast – Zitner’s are an affordable treat and sell out quickly!

Cadbury Eggs: You didn’t think we’d forget these classics, did you? How could we?! Every Easter we put in an order that rivals the one the Easter Bunny himself must place, and every year we sell every last egg. Our selection includes classic Cadbury Crème Eggs, Cadbury Mini Crème Eggs, and the speckled spectacular sweets known as Cadbury Mini Eggs!

Beep, Beep, Peep!

Image courtesy of FreeFunEaster.com

Well, folks, it happened. We aren’t even officially into the Easter season, and one of our friends has already sent us the CUTEST little marshmallow Peeps creation we’ve ever seen. And for as adorable and delicious as it looks, the directions are remarkably simple! Did we mention it’s also a rather cheap recipe that involves no cooking or baking, so you can easily involve the kiddos in the process? Yep – pretty much Easter recipe perfection we’re working with here! So what exactly will you be making? Start your engines for Easter Bunny Racecars!

Here’s what you’ll need to make the sweetest little speedsters this side of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, as taken from FreeFunEaster.com

Bunny Marshmallow Peeps

      ♦ Large Marshmallows

          ♦ Mini Pretzels

              ♦ Cream-Filled Cakes

                  ♦ Decorator Icing

                      ♦ Frosting

                          ♦ Sprinkles

                            Before we get into the directions for these, we feel it’s necessary to understand that the miniature pretzel will serve as the steering wheel. See the picture above to really take in just how impossibly adorable that is! OK, we can move on now.

                            The first step involves cutting a small rectangle from the top of the cream-filled cake of your choosing. Since you won’t be using this removed part anywhere else in the recipe, be sure to put it to good use by eating it! The space provided by cutting away the rectangle of cake will serve as a driver’s seat for your Bunny Marshmallow Peeps, which you will further secure to the cake with a dab of white decorator icing.

                            Once the Peep is settled into his or her seat, use the decorator icing once again as ‘glue’ for the mini pretzel steering wheel and marshmallow tires.

                            Ready to get really creative? That’s where the frosting and sprinkles come into the equation. Make each car unique by getting daringly decorative with these two ingredients. Always wanted your initial on the hood of your car? Now is your chance without worrying about resale value!

                            Part Two: Fill 3 Easter Baskets for $20 or Less Per Basket!

                            In our last blog post we let you know we were working on a bit of a candy project, which like so many things at Blair, turned into a competition! After all the entries were in, we built the following ‘virtual Easter basket.’ It’s up to you to make our example a reality, of course! Below is everything you’ll need to fill 3 Easter Baskets with oodles of candy awesomeness and keep your costs below $20 per basket. What do you think? What would you skip or add? Let us know in the comments!

                            Non-Candy Supplies You’ll Need: Easter baskets, decorative Easter grass (basket filler/foundation), Easter or Spring-themed small sandwich/snack bags. Note: These small plastic bags can be found at stores like Dollar Tree and Target, and are often put out by major brands such as Ziploc. Easter grass can also be found at stores such as these.

                            The Candy You’ll Need:

                            (3) Packs of Marshmallow Peep Bunnies$1.00 each

                            (2) 10 oz. Bags of Just Born Jelly Beans – $1.40 each

                            (2) 8.5 oz. Bags of Hershey’s Easter Kisses – $3.05 each

                            (1) 6-pack of Reese’s Peanut Butter Eggs – $5.00

                            (2) 10 oz. Bags of Whoppers Eggs$2.35

                            (1) 32 oz. Bag of Gummi Fried Eggs – $7.00

                            (1) 20 oz. Bag of Gummy Butterflies – $3.85

                            (3) Chocolate Bunnies - $1.00 each

                            (1) 6-pack of Easter Kit Kats – $3.75

                            (1) 6-pack of Hershey’s Bunnies$4.75

                            How To Arrange Everything: Once you’ve filled your Easter baskets with straw and have them ready for the fabulous fill, gather together all your bags of unwrapped candy (jelly beans, gummi fried eggs, Whoppers Eggs and gummy butterflies.) These are the candies you’ll be putting into the Easter-themed snack baggies for presentation and cleanliness’ sake. All of the other candies on the list can be placed right in the basket as they are individually wrapped. Just for fun, I like to ‘drop’ my Hershey Kisses in last, after I’ve filled the basket with the larger pieces. They tend to fall about nicely, filling in any gaps, making your already awesomely-full basket appear even more full!

                            Part One: Buy Candy in Bulk for the Biggest, Sweetest Easter Baskets!

                            There’s no getting around the fact that putting together a truly special Easter basket can be a costly venture. While individual pieces of candy can very much be an affordable everyday indulgence, when the task at hand calls for an abundance of sweets and treats, the total tally can be surprisingly high. Luckily for you, we came up with a super simple way to stretch your candy dollar further without leaving the basket with more Easter grass than goodies. And that way is to buy candy in bulk!

                            Buying candy in bulk makes the most sense for those that will be filling multiple baskets. If you only have one child and you aren’t making a basket for yourself or someone else, it might not be the best fit for you. That said, it can still work out quite well if you like to keep a variety of candy on hand for your own enjoyment throughout the year. Sandwich bags go a long way toward keeping candy fresh!

                            Instead of just talking about how buying candy in bulk can be beneficial to your pocketbook, we decided to whip up a sample sweets scenario for someone filling 3 Easter baskets. You can, of course, feel free to customize the candy options to better suit the recipients, but we’ve got our eye on some popular favorites. This list is still in the works as we’re all vying for our personal favorites to be included! What we can tell you is there will be 10 candies included, and the candy cost per basket will be less than $20. We hope you’ll check back to see which ‘Top 10’ we decided on! (I am not caving on Gummi Fried Eggs. They’re eggs! It’s an Easter basket! I will win…)

                            Chocolate Easter Eggs Have Hatched at Blair Candy!

                            We couldn’t be hippity-hoppity-happier that Easter is well on its way! Here at BlairCandy.com, we’re always sure to stock a superior selection of Easter candy. You can count on us for the freshest jelly beans, marshmallow Peeps, chocolate bunnies, and other mouthwatering must-haves. But it’s the most decidedly Easter-y candy of all that gets our taste buds talking loudest – chocolate Easter eggs!

                            The world of chocolate Easter eggs offers something special for everyone’s preferences. If you like them on the little side, Cadbury Mini Eggs make an addictive option. I actually count them among my Top 5 favorite chocolate candies of all time, and wish they were available year-round! A perfectly petite egg of chocolate is dressed in a sweet, slightly speckled, pastel candy shell, and the result is simple, velvety perfection with a touch of texture.

                            When I’m craving something a little larger with a bit more crunch, I reach for Zitner’s Butter Krak Eggs. If you’ve never had the pleasure of sinking your teeth into one of these marvelous creations, don’t waste any more time! They’re buttery, coconutty, and wrapped in divine dark chocolate decadence. You might just want to put a few on a plate and call it dinner!

                            Once upon a time, two ingredients came together that had never been paired before, and since that magical moment, the candy and dessert world has never been the same. That palate-pleasing power couple is none other than Chocolate and Peanut Butter! While chocolate and peanut butter taste great any time of year, there’s something about them coming together in an egg shape that makes them even more amazing. And if a chocolate peanut butter egg is what you’re after, we’ve got you covered! Blair offers Zitner’s Peanut Butter Eggs, Reese’s Peanut Butter Eggs, Lerro Peanut Butter Eggs, and my personal favorite, Gardners Peanut Butter Meltaway Eggs. Of course I don’t like to play favorites, though, so I just eat them all. ;)

                            Do We Eat Too Much Easter Candy? Never!!

                            We had the pleasure of coming across a hop-tastic Easter candy infographic posing the question “Do We Eat Too Much Easter Candy?” Sure, many of us nosh on our fair share of scrumptious candy on Easter morning…and Easter afternoon…and Easter night, but candy is all about moderation. Like all things, enjoy candy throughout the year in normal quantities, and when it comes to candy-rich holidays, like Easter, Valentine’s Day, and Halloween, treat yourself to all the seasonal candies till your heart’s content. Life’s short, so sweeten it with candy ;-)

                            The candy facts we crave:

                            • 16 billion Jelly Beans are created just for Easter
                            • 90 million chocolate bunnies are produced each year for Easter
                            • 4 million Peeps and Chicks are produced for Easter – each day!
                            • Each household spends around $131 on Easter candy

                            Do you concur with these candylicious numbers? How much do you typically spend on Easter candy? What kind of Easter treats do you usually choose- Jelly Beans, Peeps, chocolate bunnies, Reeses Eggs, etc…

                            Share it with us by leaving a comment!

                            Easter by the Numbers

                            Displayed on Care2.com, created by DegreeSearch.org, and credited to Robert Banh

                            Edible Easter Eggs With A Surprise Inside!

                            We recently saw a great Rice Krispies commercial with the fabulous suggestion of making moldable Rice Krispie treats into egg shapes, and then stuffing them with Easter candy goodies!  The idea called for tasty Easter M&M’s, but we had a few suggestions of our own:

                            - How about some pastel Skittles? Pick your favorite Easter colors.

                            - Not a fan of chocolate? Gummy bears, Swedish fish or Sour Patch Kids may do the trick.

                            - One of our very favorites is peanut butter, so bring on the Reese’s Pieces, please.

                            - Tic-tacs will also fit nicely, and are a fresh alternative to traditional Easter candy.

                            Candy Easter Eggs

                            - For the sports-oriented, make larger Krispie eggs and stuff them which chocolate baseballs, soccer balls, basketballs, or footballs. We have them all!

                            - Of course, you can never go wrong with a long-time favorite, Easter jelly beans!

                            - Do your loved ones have a sour tooth instead of a sweet one? Nerds are the answer.

                            - Want to taste the rainbow? Stuff your surprise eggs with Skittles.

                            Let your imagination run wild, and let the creative ideas flow. Fun and easy project for kids, too! (NOTE: Always be aware of choking hazards.)

                            Don’t forget to leave a special surprise Krispie egg for the Easter Bunny himself!

                            Make Easy Easter Baskets Stuffed With Personality

                            Easter Candy BasketsGet innovative with this year’s Easter baskets! Our Bunny’s helpers put together a list of easy ideas to make your Easter baskets ones they’ll never forget…

                            > Do you have a service member in your family? Consider a basket filled exclusively with Made in the USA Easter candy!  From chocolate basketballs to Cella’s chocolate covered cherries, and caramel creams to Clark bars, the Easter Bunny delivers some sweet American pride! Fill basket with red, white and blue basket filler, and you’re all set. (We ship to military PO boxes, if you prefer.)

                            > Have someone on the list who remembers the “good old days”? We have a huge selection of nostalgic Easter Candy, and even have a pre-assembled nostalgic candy Easter basket!

                            > Everyone has a favorite color, so why not create an Easter basket that is bursting with that hue? Shop Easter candy by color, and you’re on your way to an impressive presentation they will believe took the bunny hours to put together.

                            > Do you have a diabetic in the family? We have a sweet solution; easily put together a sugar-free selection with sugar free Easter candy and gum.

                            > If you have a loved one like we do (Candy Pam) who doesn’t have much of a sweet tooth, go for a snack food Easter basket. The Easter Bunny will prove he appreciates the sweet and the salty tastes of his good little boys and girls. (Great for college students, too!)

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