Life without Espresso Crunch

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Espresso beans and candy melts

Life without Espresso Crunch


Unfortunately, we have been unable to get the seasonal Christmas favorite, Espresso Crunch, for our festive treatmakers. We’d like to make a suggestion for your Christmas candy melt mixes and bark: coffee beans.

As most of you probably know, chocolate covered coffee beans are actually a well known treat, and a bark made with coffee beans is both easy and tasty. So here’s what you need:

  • 1 lb. Mercken’s Candy Melts of your choice (we used butterscotch for our test).
  • 2 oz. whole coffee beans (we used espresso roast beans)

How to Do It

  1. Take 2 oz. of whole coffee beans, put them in a baggie, and smash them a little bit for about 5 seconds. You can use a glass or rolling pin to pound them. You don’t want them all smashed; there should be a variety of fragment sizes for optimum flavor and crunch.
  2. Melt the candy melts the way you normally do and mix in the beans.
  3. Spread the mixture out on a sheet of parchment and let harden.
  4. When it hardens, you have bark. Break it into pieces of random sizes.

And that’s all there is to it!

You can vary the flavors of candy melts to find your own best flavor combination. You can even vary the flavors of coffee beans (e.g. hazelnut or caramel, etc.) Don’t limit yourself to our recipe.

Have fun!

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Image of crisp pearls

Crisp it Up

Category:Food Products

If you want to add some pearls to your cupcakes for that extra bit of decorative flair, but you don’t like the hardness of regular sugar pearls, we urge you to consider our crisp pearls. These are beautiful and flavorful balls of pearly crispness that would be a great addition to nearly any cupcake or cake.

Instead of a sugar center, these pearls have a crisped rice interior which gives them a gentle crunch, adding texture to your treat. While these extraordinary beauties don’t come in all the colors of the regular sugar pearls, they do complement most any color scheme, and they come in a few flavors. On the cupcake at the top of this page is the Dark, Milk, and White Chocolate Mix; at the very left is the Sea Salt Caramel flavor; next to that is the White Chocolate Crispy Pearl; you can tell the Orange Pearls and the Strawberry Pearls by their colors; and our most colorful crispy pearls are in the Rainbow Assortment. We also carry (but they’re not shown) Gold Chocolate and Silver Chocolate pearls. These are chocolate pearls accented with gold and silver. They’d be a sophisticated addition to any treat. Consider these simple and flavorful additions to your treats next time you decorate.

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Our New “Find a Treat Maker” Page

Category:Uncategorized We’d like you to consider being listed in our Find a Treat Maker page. Sometimes we get calls from people wanting know if we can refer them to people who make cakes, cupcakes, and other treats. Since we don’t always have customers’ business cards handy, we decided to make a page with listings of customers who make such treats.

What You Get

The best way to know what you’ll get is to look at the our Find a Treat Maker page. You can submit two images: One can be a logo (or a picture you want to use as a logo); the other can be a picture of some of your products.


Potential clients can search by categories, so be sure to list as many categories that your work includes. You can view the list of categories in the search area. If you find something is not listed, we’ll add it.

Social Media

You can add your various social media accounts if they show examples of your work, and your listing will link to them.

Contact Information and More

Your contact information will be available to your potential clients so they can contact you by any means you like. You’ll also be able to write something about your work to give the customer a little more information about you.


We charge $5.00 per year to list you in our directory. If you feel that you can use another way to get people to notice you, then put yourself in our directory now. Come into the store or email us to find out more.  

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CMC powder

Use CMC Powder to Make Edible Glue

Category:Food Products,Products If you need a reliable, edible glue for your sugar based products, you can use this easy to make glue and all you need is CMC Powder and water. Once made, it can be stored in a sealed container – we recommend in the refrigerator – for about two weeks.

Here’s what you’ll need. You can adjust the proportions based on the amount of glue you need:

1/4 tsp CMC Powder 2 tablespoons warm water small bowl or container

Here’s what you do:

  1. Mix CMC powder and water in a small bowl or similar container.
  2. Stir to mix as thoroughly as possible. The powder does not mix easily with water, so just do your best to break up any big lumps.
  3. Let the mixture sit in the refrigerator overnight. This is where the powder will dissolve completely in water.
  4. You should have a thick liquid, about the consistency of syrup. That’s your glue! You can thicken the glue with more CMC, and you can thin it with water.
  5. Apply it to surfaces using whatever tool you think is best suited for your project.

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Edible gold leaf

Using Edible Gold Leaf

Category:Products We now have available 23K edible gold leaf for use on your candies, cookies, or cakes. It’s not harmful to eat because it “biologically inert,” which means basically, it’s not affected by the digestive system and doesn’t break down in the body. Ugh! But it sure adds a touch of elegance to your treats. Here are a couple of things to remember:
  1. Don’t breathe on it, or use it around an air conditioning vent, or a fan. It’s very light and will blow away easily.
  2. You can pick it up gently with a needle or sharp knife then brush it flat with a soft paint brush.
  3. Other than that, it’s pretty easy.
Here’s a very short YouTube video – made by BakeClub – showing briefly how you can accent a treat with piece of gold leaf. The possibilities are (nearly) endless!

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Sprinkles in a candy mold

Pouring Candy Melts over Sprinkles

Category:Food Products,Problem Solving In order to save time, some people consider putting sprinkles or sugar into the candy molds, then pouring the chocolate into the mold. Sprinkles end up on top; work saved, right? Well not really. The sprinkles or sugar will very likely get absorbed into the body of the candy. I did experiment with the process to give you an idea of what would happen. Here is the mold I used with pearls, sugar, and heart quins already inside.
Sprinkles in a candy mold

Sprinkles in a candy mold. Ready for the chocolate.

And after pouring in the candy and letting it harden, here’s the result:
Candy melts over sprinkles

The result of pouring candy melts over sprinkles.

As you can see, the result isn’t that great. Interesting, but not great. So… If you feel that you have to put sprinkles on top of a molded candy, think about brushing a thin layer of the same colored chocolate on the area where you want the sprinkles to be – if you want the candy to maintain one color. If you want, or need, to use a different colored chocolate, just make an attractive drizzle and drop the sprinkles right on top. Enjoy!

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Crispy topping feuilletine

Crispy Flakes – an underused Topping

Category:Food Products,Products
Crispy flakes and cake slice with coffee

These flakes add a tasty crunch to your pastry items.

Nonpareils, jimmies, sugar crystals, pearls, these are all great toppings for your cupcakes and candies, but there is a topping that adds a slightly sweet crunch to your pastries and even candy. These are the Crispy Flakes. The French even have a name for this topping: feuilletine, and it’s used in many fine pastries. They are slightly sweet and has a taste that will remind you of a sugar cone for ice cream. Their neutral color will complement almost any pastry or candy. So give ’em a try and add a new level of taste and texture to your goodies.

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Caramel Tips and Information

Category:Food Products I get a lot of questions about melting our “Peters” brand caramel. While it’s a pretty straightforward process in the microwave, I thought I’d give you the scoop straight from the manufacturer, so here goes:

Caramel Melting Tips

Melting caramel loaf in microwave – Place caramel in a microwave safe dish. Cook on high for 1 minute. Stir. Cook on 50% power for 1 minute. Stir again. Repeat at 50% until thoroughly melted, being careful to avoid scorching. To thicken caramel – Add 1/2 to 1 oz. confectioners’ sugar to 1 lb. of caramel Softening caramel – Add 1/2 to 1 tsp. evaporated milk to 1 lb. of caramel. Storing caramel – Unused caramel may be cooled to room temperature and reused; seal in airtight container.

Caramel Apple Tips

  • Wash apples to remove any wax; dry thoroughly. Insert stick into stem side of apple; do not pierce through bottom.
  • Maintain caramel in the 160-180 degree F range and completely coat apple with caramel (including pierce point) to obtain maximum shelf life.
  • For fastest setup and to minimize “feet,” refrigerate apples after dipping for 10-15 minutes. Avoid prolonged refrigeration to prevent condensation.

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Black…It’s the new Black (Melting Candy, that is)

Category:Food Products Well, the Blommer Vivid Black Wafers have been discontinued. In its place we now have Clasen Satin Black Wafers. Clasen, the same company that gives you our awesome Navy Blue melting candy, now gives us satiny black melting goodness! What will you notice about these new wafers? Well, first you will notice that they have a shinier finish (satin) than the Blommer wafers. Second, when melted, the texture is slightly creamier. And, last, the flavor still has that slight hint o’ chocolate. In my opinion there is a slight Oreo cookie flavor to this new candy melt. It’s good. You’ll really have to try it for yourself. Like all of our darker candy, this melt has has visible scuff marks while in the bag due to being bumped around in transit. These scuff marks disappear completely when the candy is melted.

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Silver Dragees – Little Balls of Doom?

Category:stories Tags : 
20130117-055010.jpgSo many people have come into the store looking for the shiny silver balls known as dragees. When I tell them we can’t sell dragees they are astonished. Until just a few weeks ago, I thought they were actually outlawed by law, but it turns out the truth is stranger than that. In 2003, a lawyer in Napa County, California, started a lawsuit against sellers of the little silver balls because each ball contains small amounts of silver – you know, to make them shiny. Of course, any business he sues has the option of paying this attorney to settle out of court, thereby assuring that the public is once again saved from the evil of tiny bits of silver. Perhaps this attorney, Mark Pollok, is looking out for the public good. Maybe he just found an easy way to intimidate large and small business to pay him money. Regardless, almost no one in California sell dragees any more. Just so you know, you can buy dragees in any of the other 49 states, and in Europe. If you want to read a newspaper article about the dragee suit, you can click this link to read an article from the San Francisco Chronicle.

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