Mount Rushmore – Candy Edition

[Mount Rushmore is a new weekly series wherein I propose a category and then nominate four items from that category to stand atop a hypothetical Mount Rushmore.  The goal here is to foster some good-natured debate in seeking to answer an unanswerable question.  Feel free to use the comments to propose your own  quartet, discuss the merits of my own choices, and tell others just how wrong they are.  I often no guidance on what criteria out to be applied in answer the question.  Half the fun is in debating the methodology itself.  So without further adieu, let’s get it on!]

Candy.  God… who does’t love candy.  I don’t even have much of a sweet tooth, but when someone says the word, I just feel better inside.  Children are so enamored with the idea that they’ll choose inferior candy over just about anything: trust me, I’ve done the research to determine this*.  We have an entire holiday during which we abandon many basic rules of society because, hey, free candy!

What candy would I put on the Mount Rushmore of Candy?  This was a relatively easy call for me.  I thought of four items, bounced a couple more ideas around, but just kept coming back to these four:

Peanut M&Ms: Obviously superior to the original.  I mean, what things aren’t made better by the addition of nuts?  They have the perfect ratio of chocolate-to-candy-to-nut.  Goobers?  Fish you, Goobers.

Snickers: Another perfectly balanced treat.  It’s got great texture — step back spineless Milky Way and Three Musketeer.  It’s filling in a way that no other candy is, making it easier to justify when it takes the place of an actual meal.  It’s got a great name.  It’s got some weight to it: like a heavy-bottomed Scotch glass, it just feels good in the hand.  Oh… and it’s fishing delicious.

Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups: Is my bias towards more savory treats showing?  TOO BAD!  Reese’s are one of those candies that you somehow forget just how good it is and then you take a bite and you say, “I’m such a butt head!  How could I forget you, old friend?”  Thing is, you gotta stick with the original size.  The mini’s throw off the ratio.  Ratios matter, people.

Sour Patch Kids: My vice of choice.  I’ll eat these until my tongue is numb and everything tastes off for the rest of the day.  Well worth it.  Again, though, you have to stick with the originals.  The watermelons and peach aren’t bad, but they lack the sour punch of the originals.  I’m skeptical of the new blue one that appeared on the scene recently.  Time will tell how he is received.

So, that is my Mount Rushmore?  Whatchu got, OT-ers?

* In trying to rid my house of some Easter treats, I brought in some shitty jelly beans and delicious Girl Scout cookies.  I offered the students a choice between the two.  Every single one took the jelly beans.  Candy, man… it’s just got a way.


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149 thoughts on “Mount Rushmore – Candy Edition

  1. Sweet Tarts, pre-“Blue” Raspberry.

    You had the perfect pentad: Grape, Cherry, Orange, Lemon, Lime.

    Then, for some reason, they added a sixth (“we need blue in there”, I’m guessing was the thought process) and changed Lime (THE PERFECT TART FLAVOR) to “Sour Apple”.

    I hope that the guys in charge of making this decision left the meeting room having the same conversation as at the end of Easy Rider:

    Billy: We’ve done it. We’ve done it. We’re rich. Wyatt. [laughs] Yeah, man. [laughs] Yeah. Clearly, we did it, man we did it. We did it. Huh. We’re rich, man. We’re retired in Florida, now, mister. Whew.
    Wyatt: You know, Billy. We blew it.
    Billy: What? Huh? Wha-wha-wha- That’s what it’s all about, man. I mean, like you know – I mean, you go for the big money, man, and then you’re free. You dig? [Laughs]
    Wyatt: We blew it. Good night, man.

    Now that I think about it, nobody left that room but a bunch of goddamned Billys.


  2. The mini’s throw off the ratio. Ratios matter, people

    Absolutely, which is why the Reese’s Easter Eggs, which have perfected the chocolate-to-peanutbutter ratio, or one of humankind’s greatest inventions.


  3. Chocolate isn’t candy. It’s a foodstuff. People eat pounds of chocolate at a time (okay, so some of these people wind up in the hospital). You’d feel ridiculous if you ate a pound of gummi bears, wouldn’t you?


  4. Has anyone here had the dark chocolate peanut M&M’s? SO SO GOOD. ADDICTIVE LIKE CANDY CRACK. I don’t know why they even make the original milk chocolate variety anymore.


  5. I’m not saying I hate the OP’s choices – some of my favorites are on that list – but peanut/chocolate is overrepresented (as is soft candy) (and massed produced stuff). So:

    1) Turkish delight
    2) Salt-water taffy
    3) Butterscotch hard candy
    4) Snickers


    • Salt water taffy freaking rocks.

      I’ll let the M&Ms slide because they are pretty good. Sour Patch kids are the best candy on earth, so great job there. I’m replacing peanut butter cups with Butterfinger. Nostalgia has a roll in the Butterfinger. Snickers? Eh, whatever.

      Dark chocolate has to be on the list. It just has to, you monster! Red Vines is the only licorice I’m willing to acknowledge exists. Jelly Belly jelly beans are the BEST, except for the buttered popcorn because it takes like ass. They really screwed up on that one.


  6. Way back when, Jolly Ranchers were the candy of choice amongst friends when…partaking of…certain things….that The Man doesn’t want you to have (and are very, very bad for you, children, don’t do them).

    Anyway, even unto this day, the smell of JR’s can trigger certain associations and physical sensations.

    See? Candy is a corrupting gateway drug.


  7. I realize I don’t remember the last time I even purchased candy (other then dark chocolate). I’ve developed an allergy to corn products, so it’s all pretty much outside what I consider edible now. But digging back into the days before, I’d come up with:

    Tootsie Rolls
    Wild Cherry Life Savers


  8. And the best candy bars ever made (pre-corn syrup, of course) is the Mounds Bar.

    Coconut perfection encased in dark chocolate perfection.


  9. Not in order of preference but as I think of them:

    Peanut butter cups
    York peppermint patties
    Cadbury Cream Eggs–Bok Bok biatches!

    OFC, I prefer very dark, high cacao, bar chocolate. Goes well with scotch.


  10. Reese’s Peanut cups. Chocolate covered pretzels, the perfect blend of sweet and salt. chocolate covered marzipan. lemon sucking candy.


  11. Gee thanks for the topic. i am trying to overcome my addiction to sweets. i figure that i eat about 4000 calories a month of candy. and all at work. where it seems like every admin asst has bowl of something screaming to be devoured. that’s the only time i really crave it. Been about 7 weeks. i figure all else equal every month i go without candy i lose about a pound of weight.

    that being said my favorites are
    dark chocolate, especially with a soft filling
    See’s peppermint. the kind where each is single wrapped.
    Jolly Ranchers – traditional flavors
    black licorice – the good stuff


  12. Chocolate is, as says, different from candy, though I would argue it’s more a drug than a food. And the best kind is super-dark chocolate, the less sweetness the better, mixed with some flavoring or another, like chili powder, raspberry filling, peanut butter, etc.

    Candy, though: Nerds (so crunchy), Jolly Rancher (Yay, Lockjaw), Blow Pop (bonus gum), and Cherry Twizzler (fun to peel apart). Note that isn’t the Strawberry, straw-type Twizzler, which I don’t care for unless I’m using it as a straw. I’m talking about the hexagonal ropey stuff.


    • Ginger. Dark chocolate and ginger by Chocolove. Mmm. Or Dark chocolate with sea salt and almonds by Moonstruck. Ok, anything by Moonstruck.

      If you love dark chocolate as much as I do, I will forgive you for the Nerds, Blow Pops, and Twizzlers. What are you three??? How does one person have the capacity to enjoy all of those and dark chocolate???


  13. That list is simply terrible, a slight — nay, a mockery of the real and true Mt. Rushmore of Candy, which as everyone knows features:

    1. Marzipan, because marzipan screams “mom only buys it on a special holiday.”

    2. Reese’s Minis, because if you get the regular size you eat it and you’re done. But if you buy a bag of minis, you do so because you only want a wee bit because dinner time’s in about an hour, but then you eat one, and you realize that one isn’t quite enough so you grab two more. And then that actually makes you peckish, so you grad a few more. Then you realize that you have a small foil ball going, but it’s not so big that you can’t actually throw it at things in any effective way, of you have to go get another handful to make the ball big enough to make into a cat toy. And then you realize that it’s almost dinner time and you’re not hungry anymore and you go to put the bad away, but now there’s just three minis left and you think to yourself how stupid it is to put a bag of three minis in the pantry, so you eat them. That’s some motherfisin’ Rushmore cred, that is.

    3. JellyBelly Sours, because why didn’t you have these here to begin with???!!!

    4. Truffles.

    Thank you in advance, everyone, for revising your lists.

    That is all.


    • Jelly Belly Sours are indeed fantastic. Probably my second favorite candy. I should have made my criteria explicit. These aren’t necessarily the four tastiest — though they all are phenomenally tasty. Rather, I consider them to be the most important. Jelly Belly Sours… amazing, undoubtedly… but I know few people who agree with me on that. And that seems to matter. Popularity… ubiquitousness… versatility… all of these factored into my list.

      Also, saying “truffles” feels like cheating. That’d be like saying “chocolate” and claiming every form under the sun.


  14. So am I the only person here that does not like peanuts in my chocolate? I like my chocolate to be smooth and creamy. I do not want crunchy bits in it.


  15. Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, Snickers, Peanut M&Ms? All good. I’d be happy to see them on the Candy Mount Rushmore. But Sour Patch Kids? Ick.

    I say we go for tradition. Honor the pioneers. Circus Peanuts! Orange in color, banana in flavor, peanut in shape! There’s no trademark, anyone can manufacture them–how wonderfully democratic is that? They represent our celebration of diversity and our love of fun!

    Circus Peanuts are what is best about America.


  16. It just occurred to me, we also need a definitive Candy Anti-Rushmore, depicting the very worst candy ever. My nominees:

    1. Candy corn.

    2. Cheap, hollow Chocolate Easter Bunnies that don’t even taste like chocolate. (It’s like the culinary trade off for Jewish and Muslim kids: On the one hand, you don’t get to eat bacon, but on the other you don’t have to eat the bunnies because grandma bought them and is standing right there asking you to dig in.)

    3. Peeps

    4. Mounds


  17. I’m going to throw out a darkhorse candidate: Goo Goo Clusters. Alternatively, Goo Goo Clusters Supreme.

    If you know what these are, you and I are friends.


  18. Skittles and Starburst. Sandwich optional.
    (How do you know a candy is awesome? When you hoard it as survival rations through August from Halloween… [yes, a friend or two of mine might have been a little deprived as a child…])


  19. I hadn’t had Mike and Ikes since high school and then on a lark I bought them when I saw them at a convenience store, figuring “This’ll be something I remember fondly but doesn’t hold up over the years.”

    Oh. My. Not-god. They added trace amounts of real fruit juice to the recipe and the result was fantastic. Full fruity flavor, great jelly bean texture inside with the hard sugar shell outside. Luminescent and just sticky enough on the teeth. It’s been a massive exercise in restraint to not go back to that convenience store and buy the jumbo box.

    …Alsotoo I endorse the Reese’s Peanut Butter cups for Mt. Rushmore.


  20. The top shelf:

    Coussins de Lyon.
    Lindor truffles (blue wrapper, dark chocolate).
    pistachio Turkish delight.
    marrons glacés.

    Ordinary but perfectly acceptable stuff:

    Reese’s Pieces.
    Mounds. (Sorry Tod!)
    sour peaches.
    pecan pralines.


  21. Licorice (black jelly beans are an acceptable substitute this time of year)
    Dark chocolate coated marzipan
    Malted Milk Balls
    Atomic Fire Balls


  22. Candy is a distraction. If the point is dessert, there is PIE.

    1) Pumpkin Pie. In a universe where we have JIT fruits, vegetables, and whatever whether it be February, August, or November, pumpkin pie remains seasonal. There’s only about 3 months where it’s good and available and… *poof*. Next thing you know, you’re in the other 9 months. Serve with heavy whipping cream whipped into a frenzy. (Whipped Cream. Put it all over your body.)

    2) Apple Pie. Preferably Granny Smith apple. Preferably lattice rather than Dutch. Preferably with cheese rather than ice cream. Oh yes.

    3) Key Lime. Sweet and Citrusy Tart. Ideally, you sit back after the first bite and say “I forgot how tart this was.” The tiniest floret of whipped cream should do and put a tiny wedge of lime on top of it.

    4) Blackberry Cobbler. Seriously. Vanilla Ice Cream.

    5) Strawberry Rhubarb. Ideally, the pie crust has had raw sugar sprinkled on it before the filling has been added to the pie. A lattice on top will hold the vanilla ice cream nicely.

    Candy is for when you only have 2 minutes.


    • There are only three kinds of pies:

      1.) Pecan pie
      2.) Peach cobbler
      3.) Blackberry cobbler

      The fact that two of the three kinds of pies are not, in fact, pies, says all you need to know about pies.


      • — one of the best cookie recipes ever. This is a variation of Mexican Wedding cakes, but the secret is in the long, slow back which does incredible magic with the pecans:

        2 sticks butter, softened
        1/4 cup sugar
        2 cups flour
        1 cup pecans, chopped fine (almost to a butter, even)
        powdered sugar

        Preheat oven to 250?

        Cream butter and sugar; mix in flour and pecans until just smooth.
        Roll into balls about the size of a ping-pong ball, and put them on a cookie sheet. One standard-size sheet should do, they won’t spread. Bake them for 1 hour. Roll in powdered sugar while still warm.

        These keep well, but in a house of pecan lovers, they do not last.


    • If we’re moving into desserts I concur that pies are the top of the mountain. Cake is for little kids and cupcakes are just not worth talking about. I also think pies are the definitive Southern dessert with one exception: banana pudding. I get weak at the knees just thinking about it.

      If I had to pick three pies it would be hard but my top 3 are:

      – apple
      – pumpkin
      – sugar cream

      Apple pie should always be served warm with vanilla ice cream. Pumpkin should be served at room temperature with a mountain of Cool Whip (I like a 2:1 ratio of Cool Whip to Pie). Sugar cream also gets served warm with no need for add-ons. All require an enormous glass of ice-cold 2% milk.


    • Sour Cherry Tapioca Pie is the best pie in the world, and anyone who thinks different has never eaten mine!

      Goldrush apples (or Jonathans in a pinch) make a damn fine pie though (go light on the sugar).

      Rhubarb cobbler is wonderful stuff.

      And I’ve made a decent 3berry with the frozen berries from Costco.

      I’ve made a peach pie once or twice, and it’s been fiiine.


    • I love pie so much it is embarrassing. It is the thing I left out when I had a first date with this guy over the weekend that said even he is embarrassed by his LotR collection. My love for pie is more embarrassing then a LorR collection!!! I never thought I would say that.


  23. 1. Sour Patch Kids – totally.
    2. Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups (I agree with Chris about the holiday Reese’s being best, but regular Reese’s are still good enough on their own to be on Mount Rushmore).
    3. English Toffee in any form, up to and including Heath Bar form. It both depressed and excited me when the Heath Bars were the candy that the kids chose to avoid this year. Depressed because it was clear that they avoided them because they were unfamiliar with the Heath Bar; excited because it meant I got a boatload of Heath Bars!
    4. Pre-2013 Skittles. Why in the world would they get rid of the lime?


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