Monday, August 10, 2009

The Real Crisis in Iceland

Some friends visited Iceland recently. Knowing how much I enjoy candy, they were kind enough to bring me back some. (This was most appreciated, despite what follows.)

Iceland is currently plunged in a severe financial crisis. The problems have been blamed on the country's overreliance on the banking industry. But now that I've sampled some of their sweets, I wonder if the real root cause is HORRENDOUSLY BAD TASTE IN CANDY.

I tested three types of candy bar: the Eittsett, the Nizza and the Tromp.

I started with the Eitsett, which is a milk chocolate bar with a leathery strip of black licorice. Now, I don't particularly care for licorice, so that puts me at a disadvantage (since it appears to be the building block of all Icelandic treats). But I'm pretty sure no one wants to eat a piece of licorice that tastes like an old belt.

Elliot did enjoy the wrapper, though.

The Nizza was a similar idea, except it's milk chocolate with hard kernels of licorice embedded inside. Delightful, if you need to remove a filling at home.

Remember in third grade when your class had a rabbit and the teacher gave it away at the end of the school year, then you came back after the summer and saw there were still some turds at the bottom of the cage, so you ate some? That sums up these licorice bits.

Finally, there was the Tromp. It was a bit like a Charleston Chew — if Charleston Chew came in "ass flavor." It combines a strip of licorice with a mysterious green substance, surrounded by chocolate. I couldn't figure out what the green stuff was: nougat, pistachio, marshmallow?

The list of ingredients wasn't much help. I'm pretty sure "sykur" means "sugar." I'm going to have to assume the green thing was "nymjolkurduft," because that just sounds disgusting.

This was Kelly's reaction (she thought the green stuff was marzipan, by the way).

Fortunately, I had some Japanese candy to cleanse my palate. As I've said before, Japan is a candy superpower. They should provide some emergency aid to Iceland in this department.

Despite the disturbing shape of these cookies, they were delicious.

Dōmo arigatō.