Commercial Christmas

Friday, December 6, 2013

Hello friends :-)

With Christmas just around the corner, the festive spirit is truly everywhere especially in public places such as shopping malls. At times, I feel like occasions like that meant to commemorate something important, something meaningful becomes a bit too commercialized because well, we are living in the real world and undoubtedly, businesses would take every opportunity to bank it on the seasons and take a slight advantage on the generosity of people during this time period. 

Christmas to me is one of the most commercialized events but that's perfectly alright to me because I absolutely love to see the new creations businesses come up with to celebrate the festivities, especially with regards to food! Limited edition flavours, cute themed designs; everything makes me so happy and puts a smile to my face. Here, I'll be sharing some of my favourite Christmas themed food I look out for every year and also some new things I've tried this year! 

$10 for a bag of around 55 kisses - for the past two years I could only find it in Candylicious outlets in Singapore 

These peppermint kisses are seriously my all time favourite Christmas candy every single year. I may even consider stocking up on these so I can have them all year round but then again, the thrill of waiting for them to be available during the December period will be lessened. These are little white chocolate kisses striped with red peppermint flavoured stripes and it even has tiny candy cane bits inside that offer the right amount of crunch. It is heavenly, honestly! 

Melt a couple down, add it to your coffee/ mocha/ hot chocolate and you'll get a peppermint mocha! Really, the possibilities are endless with these peppermint kisses. In fact, I have attempted a recipe with these (chocolate peppermint cheesecake) and may share the recipe here! Of course, it is insane on its own already. 

Whenever I have kisses, no matter what flavour, I'll put them into this toilet bowl container hehe just because the shape of Hershey's kisses resembles something we all know too well :') If there is one thing you must try from this post, THIS IS IT. But make sure you like peppermint first. (Who doesn't like peppermint anyway? It is most probably in your toothpaste anyway) 

Price ranges from $1.50-$2.00 at all Breadtalk outlets, I presume

I love bread and I used to eat Breadtalk buns in place of proper meals all the time (okay actually I still do) so I was quite pleased to find out that they've actually come up with several Christmas themed ones. Actually, Breadtalk always keeps up with the times and the things happening in Singapore - I remember how they rolled out panda bread when Jia Jia and Kai Kai (are those their names?) arrived from China so yes the brains behind the bakery really knows how to cash in on current events, which is pretty cool and smart except that I fall prey everytime. 

So the bun or more specifically the donut in the foreground of the above picture is called Christmas Chocolate ($1.50) and it's basically a holeless plain donut which they injected chocolate cream into (thus the holes on the surface, which is covered with powdered sugar). There's also a Christmas tree shaped with hundreds and thousands on top :') It tastes ordinary but looks super cute anyway. 

The chocolate covered Christmas tree thing (that can actually stand upright on its own HAHA how cool is that) is called a Chocolate Custard Noel ($2) and it has custard squeezed inside it. It's very festive looking and the custard wasn't too sweet which was great but it didn't fill the whole bun and I only tasted it at the end. 

Finally, the non-chocolate one is called a Christmas Ring ($1.80) and it's like this braided bun thing filled with cinnamon, raisins and bits of walnut with granulated sugar on top. I personally don't like nuts nor raisins so I won't buy this again :-) 

$1.99 for a pack of three, available at Cold Storage outlets 

To be entirely honest, I'm not a big fan of the Peeps marshmallow candies - they are usually shaped as chicks or bunnies; mainly Easter Day characters - because its basically just sugar and glucose syrup and other similar forms put together into a fluffy form and I got these only because they looked really cute

Indeed, they tasted no different from the usual Peeps (what was I expecting anyway?) and it's just a mouthful of sugar that melts. The only thing that sets Peeps aside from other marshmallows is that these ones aren't smooth on the surface as they are coated with fine sugar. I wouldn't eat these again but I may go to the supermarts to admire their cuteness (they come in Christmas trees too). 

$6.90 a slice, at Starbucks' stores

I think I've talked about my favourite Starbucks' Christmas drink (Cranberry white chocolate mocha) and I feel like everyone already knows the coffee chain for their drinks but I feel like their cakes/ muffins and non-liquids are a tad underrated. That being said, I'm not a big fan of their cakes because it's usually too decadent for my liking but when I saw that they had a chocolate chip peppermint cheesecake, I wanted to try it really badly and well, compare it to the chocolate peppermint cheesecake I baked. 

(sorry for the similar looking photos HAHA there aren't many camera angles one can use for a slice of cake in the same location)

Anyway, I tried it and boy, it's actually quite good! It tastes mainly like an incredibly smooth white chocolate cheesecake with a subtle peppermint flavour. It leaves a minty aftertaste in your mouth that isn't overpowering at all and is actually really fresh. They probably used like a drop of peppermint extract or something :-) I really liked the little bits of chocolate cookie chunks in the cake too, it added a lovely texture. Overall it's really light and fluffy and I don't normally finish cheesecakes because I can't take too much cheese in a serving but this one was actually okay and I finished it! It's good but I don't think I'll buy it again. Worth a try though, I can imagine some people really loving this.

$3.95 or around $4 (if I'm not wrong, I can't really remember) for a pack of 12 at Fairprice Xtra (not sure about normal supermarkets)

If you know me, you'll know that I love peanut butter and chocolate and I love Reese's peanut butter cups except that they aren't easily available and are a bit on the pricey side. Also, I stopped purchasing them after I realized I could make them myself but it is quite inconvenient to do so everytime I craved them. But then I found this less expensive alternative called PBuddy Bells! PB here stands for Peanut Butter heh not Prefectorial Board as I more commonly associate the acronym with. They are basically these bell shaped chocolates with peanut butter sandwiched in between!

And they are so good - honestly they have worked for me and they are definitely as good as Reese's Peanut Butter Cups! No lie :') I am so happy that I have found them and decided to get them. However, they are only going to be available during the Christmas season - there isn't eve a normal version of these treats so sadface to that. I guess I will get to eat these only during the season or stock up on them but that'll be too much. 

There is no turning back after you've tried them honestly and you'll be thinking "why did I spend all my cash on Reese's?" - okay actually Reese's are my loves too hehe. But anyway if I remember correctly, this brand comes up with pumpkin shaped peanut butter cups during the Halloween season too - I've tried them last year from Fairprice Finest and they taste the same so that's great. At least they'll be available more than once a year, only in different festive shapes which is pretty cute too. 

$3.50 for a bag of almond cocoa cookies & $2.30 for a gingerbread cookie (comes in various cute shapes and designs) at Icing Room outlets

So The Icing Room and Breadtalk are under the same company except one sells breads and the other sells cakes and cookies and inevitably, The Icing Room will also come up with Christmas themed goodies so that's lovely as well. They have really pretty log cakes and I half expected them to come up with Christmas cupcakes but they didn't so that was upsetting so I decided to try their Christmas cookies instead. 

The almond cookies came in two types - the one I bought has cocoa in it and crushed almonds while the other one had a whole almond in the middle and I think it's just a plain butter cookie. I don't like nuts and this had a strong nutty flavour and barely any cocoa taste so I didn't really like it - it was also quite dry. It tasted a lot like a biscotti but when I asked the lady behind the counter what exactly it was, she just said "cookies with almonds". Eek I ate one of these and I will probably give the rest to my brother or something. They may be really good for dunking into coffee or some sort of liquid though, just like a biscotti but I'm not sure. 

I do not like gingerbread flavoured things and have never liked gingerbread flavoured things and will never like gingerbread flavoured things but this is a lovely little gift to give to a child or a friend because it's really quite cute and it's packaged really nicely. Surprisingly, I feel like they didn't put a lot of ginger spice in this cookie and it was a tad bland but I preferred this to the meagre number of gingerbread cookies I've had in my entire life just because there wasn't that strong a gingerbread flavour. Also, it's quite affordable compared to others sold outside - I went to Swissbake and a similar looking and sized cookie cost $5.50. Not sure about the taste but honestly I'm not in a good position to judge the taste of gingerbread things. 

Yup so these are the Christmas themed food I've tried so far this year and they put me in such a festive mood, coupled with all the jingles playing in commercial malls these days :') I'll probably need to take a sugar break for some time now but I urge all of you to try some of these things or any Christmas related food item because it'll most likely leave you with a wonderful feeling for the most wonderful time of the year!

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