chocolate kiss

Chocolate-coated marshmallow treats

Chocolate-coated marshmallow treats are produced in different variations around the world, with several countries claiming to have invented it or hailing it as their "national confection." The first chocolate-coated marshmallow treat was created about 200 years ago in Denmark or France.

National varieties

Chocolate teacake

In the United Kingdom this confection is known as a chocolate teacake, although a teacake in England is usually a sweet bread roll with dried fruit which is served toasted and buttered. The best known manufacturer of the teacake in the UK is Tunnock's, a Scottish company founded in 1890. The Tunnocks Teacake is commonly regarded in the same food category as the British biscuit, eaten at break times with a cup of tea as shown in commercials for the product. In A Nice Cup of Tea and a Sit Down the teacake is referred to as the Biscuit of the Week. The argument about whether the teacake is a biscuit or a cake led to an action in the European Court of Justice by British company Marks and Spencer who argued that it had wrongly been classed as a biscuit and taxed by the UK government as such. The European court ruled that the Teacake was not, in fact, a biscuit but a cake and as such Marks and Spencer have begun a legal battle in the UK to retrieve the taxes paid which could amount to as much as 3.5 million UK pounds sterling ($7 million).

The Tunnock's Teacake enjoys iconic status in Scotland, evoking memories of childhood, or symbolizing "home" for Scots around the world. The Scottish National Blood Transfusion Service gives Blood donors in Scotland Tunnock's Teacakes after giving blood, There is an online appreciation society for the Tunnock's Teacake and Dundee University also has an appreciation society for the Tunnocks Teacake. A giant fully-edible replica of a Tunnocks Teacake was made by Michelle Kershaw and Nick Dodds at Pimp That Snack.

The product itself consists of a small round shortbread base covered with a hemisphere of a whipped egg white concoction similar to marshmallow. As the soft white fondant is based on egg-white rather than gelatine it is therefore much more delicate than marshmallow. This is then coated in a thin layer of milk or plain chocolate and, in the case of Tunnock's, wrapped in a distinctive red and silver foil paper for the more popular milk chocolate variety, and a blue and gold wrapping for the plain chocolate type.


In Denmark the confection is known as a flødebolle (cream bun), negerbolle (negro bun) or negerkys (negro kiss). Denmark also markets a variation shaped more like a patty, hence the name bøf (hamburger).


"Krembo" (Hebrew: קרמבו, literally "cream-in-it") is very popular in Israel, especially in the winter as an alternative to ice-cream. It comes wrapped in colorful aluminum foil, and consists of a round biscuit base on the bottom and whipped egg whites cream from above, coated in a thin layer of chocolate. There are vanilla and mocha flavored Krembos. In Hebrew, the word krembo is a combination of krem (cream) and bo (in it). The average krembo weighs 25 grams (0.882 ounces) and has 115 calories. In Israel, the "krembo season" is very short, from October to February. Nevertheless, 50 million krembos are sold each year—an average of 9 per person in Israel. According to a study funded by Strauss, Israel's leading krembo producer, 69% of Israelis prefer to eat krembos from the top down (starting with the cream), and only 10% start with the biscuit at the bottom; the rest had no preference. Krembos are exported to the United States and Canada, and sold mostly in kosher shops and import stores. The concoction was popular as a homemade sweet in pre-state Israel in the 1940s, when it was known as Kushi (Hebrew: כושי, "negro"). It entered mass production in 1966. The first manufacturer, the Whitman Company, coined the name Krembo. A mocha flavor was introduced in 1967. In 1979 Whitman was acquired by Strauss-Elite. Today Strauss controls 54% of the krembo market in Israel. In 2007, Nestlé introduced an ice cream variation of krembo called Lekbo (Hebrew: לקבו, "lick inside"). In the Hebrew version of Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, Dumbledore's favorite sweet is a Krembo, rather than a sherbet lemon. The Krembo has become a pop-cultural/national icon. While considered a children's favorite, sociologists have found that it is consumed as a comfort food by Israeli expatriates in the United States.


In the US Mallomars are produced seasonally at Nabisco. A circle of Graham cracker is covered with a puff of extruded marshmallow, then "enrobed" in dark chocolate, which forms a hard shell. Mallomars were introduced to the public in 1913, the same year as the Moon Pie (a confection which has similar ingredients). The first box of Mallomars was sold in West Hoboken, NJ (now Union City, NJ). Nabisco discusses it with a short story printed on Mallomar boxes.

Because Mallomars melt easily in summer temperatures, they can become difficult to find during the summer: they are generally available from early October through April. Devoted eaters of the cookie have been known to stock up during winter months and keep them refrigerated over the summer. Seventy percent of all Mallomars sold are sold in metropolitan New York.

According to the box, Mallomars are made in Canada by Kraft Foods. In Canada, these are known as "Dream Puffs."


In New Zealand, Griffin's Mallowpuffs and Arnott's Marshians are the closest to Mallomars. Mallowpuffs are available in varieties such as Banana Split, Double Choc, Jaffa, Original, Pineapple, Rocky Road and Toffee.


In German speaking Switzerland, they are commonly known as Mohrenköpfe (Moor's heads), it's one of the European countries that still uses the original term. In the French speaking part of Switzerland they are known as Têtes Choco ("chocolate heads").


In Finland, the name originated from Germany, and they were named "Negro Kisses" in 1951. In 2001, their name was changed to "Brunberg's Kisses", after the manufacturer, for largely the same reasons as in Denmark.


In the Netherlands the name is "Negerzoenen" ("Negro kiss") though some compagnies have changed the name to the more political correct "Zoenen" ("Kisses") due to claims of racism, similar to the German case where "Negerkuss" was renamed to "Schokoküsse".


Schokoküsse were first introduced in industrial numbers in 1920, although the first mention of them in Germany dates back to 1829. The sweets are sold all year long. Every year approximately one billion are sold. This makes an average of about one dozen per person per year. They are available in supermarkets, many bakeries and some schools. Sometimes they are sold pressed between two halves of a bun, which is also referred to as a Matschbrötchen ("Mud Bread Roll").

They were first only known under the names Mohrenkopf ("Moor's Head") or Negerkuss ("Negro's Kiss"), but most companies changed the official product-name in the 1980s to the more neutral Schokokuss ("Chocolate Kiss"), Schaumkuss ("Foam Kiss") or to brand-specific names (the most famous brand being Dickmanns). In the South and the West of Germany they are still commonly known as Mohrenkopf. In Austria they are referred to as Schwedenbomben ("Swedish bombs").

Tête de choco

In France the name is tête de choco ("chocolate heads") or simply meringue au chocolat ("chocolate meringue"). The original tête de nègre ("negro's head") was progressively replaced by those more neutral terms.


Whippet cookies are produced in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. They consist of biscuit base topped with marshmallow and then coated in a hard shell of pure chocolate. Whippet cookies first came to the market in 1927, although they had been produced and distributed by Viau under the name "Empire" as early as 1901. Today, the cookies are still produced in Montreal at the east end of the Viau factory, which is now owned by Culinar Inc. They are currently available with both dark chocolate and milk chocolate coatings, and with several flavors of fruit jam filling inside the marshmallow.

The cookies are similar to Mallomars of New York City, except that Whippets can be produced throughout the year because Montreal and its surrounding areas have a lower average temperature than New York. They also bear a striking resemblance to Tunnock's Tea Cakes as well as Krembos. However, the Tunnock tea cake does not have the same kind of chocolate and a different type of filling.

The Whippet cookie is a distinct part of Quebec culture because it does not travel well outside its area of production. This is partly because the pure chocolate melts very easily (compared with a chocolate mixture) and therefore they require refrigerated transport in summer. Furthermore, the combination of the hard chocolate shell and the air-filled inner marshmallow make them self-destruct when placed in the unpressurized or semi-pressurized cargo section of an airplane. However, they are currently available at least as far away as Ontario, Canada's maritime provinces, New York City, Pennsylvania and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

An episode of the Canadian science program How It's Made showed the production process behind the cookie. However, many aspects of the production process (the amount of marshmallow filling, the ingredients, etc.) were not revealed. The show's narrator described these aspects as "classified information." As Canadian law requires an ingredient list on each package, the amount of confidential information involved is limited.

Another Canadian cookie, "Viva Puffs", is produced by Dare Foods in five flavours. Viva is a trade name; these confections have been known in (English) Canada for at least 50 years as "chocolate puffs".

Other varieties

In Flanders, the confection is known as Negerinnentet (negress titties), although the manufacturers market it under a less offensive name. When it first went on the market in Ghandour, Lebanon, the name was ras el abd (slave's head); it has since been changed to Tarboush (Fez) . Similar products in North America are Wagon Wheels and Puffs. In Australia the closest product is Arnott's Chocolate Royals, which are available in milk and dark chocolate varieties, and are similar in appearance to a Tunnock's teacake. A similar confection in Russia is Zefir (зефир). The filling is fruit-flavored, and either soft or similar to a meringue. Choco Pies, produced by Orion Confectionery in Korea, are similar to Canadian Whippets.


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