UPDATE: Sweet Vegan are now trading as Marshmallow Deli
New vegan marshmallows with a strawberry flavour. Freedom Mallows are the machine-made light and fluffy vegetarian marshmallows from Manchester producers Freedom Confectionery. Previously only available in vanilla, the Strawberry flavour is arriving in UK shops round about now. We grabbed a bag to see if they're as good as the vanilla flavour.
Soft, fluffy, vegan marshmallows from @Freedommallows (Freedom Confectionery) of Manchester. We've been looking out for these and came across them in the strangest of places... the farm shop in the village of Thorverton, Devon (with lots of other vegan groceries too if you're near Exeter). You can have any flavour you like, as long as it's vanilla:
Vegan jellies, sweet and sour. Goody Good Stuff are an independent UK company launched in 2010, specialising in vegetarian sweets. Most of their range is vegan, and according to their marketing team they're also Fat Free! Meat Free! Dairy Free! Alcohol Free! Gluten Free! Egg Free! Nut Free! Soy Free! Wheat Free! and Gelatine Free! Most importantly, they sent them to us Cost Free!...but we won't let that influence our review:
UPDATE: Vegan Status - The eight packs we reviewed are vegan (see the ingredients panels at the bottom of the page). Goody Good Stuff have clarified which products contain beeswax, and the situation is complicated. Don't mistake Koala Gummy Bears for Sour Koala Gummy Bears for instance! The Goody Good Stuff website isn't very clear, and the packs are not marked as vegan, so use the following list that the company provided this morning (2013-05-17).
How do I love thee? Let me count the ways. Eleven. Yes 11 mini packs of Love Hearts in a big tube. How better to show your vegan love at Christmas? Love Hearts weren't always vegan, but since the gelatin and cochineal were removed they are now. To celebrate why not pop down to Lidl and grab some as a great stocking filler:
Organic, Vegan, Fairtrade and Handmade - pralines from the Christmas range at Oxfam. These could hardly be more removed from the Poundland confectionery we covered yesterday, but then the price is a little different too. Six quid for six. That's the same cost as our entire haul from Poundland. The vegan market is polarised like that...really cheap stuff (with no butter or other 'luxuries'), or really expensive stuff aimed at the discerning shopper. Are they worth the outlay?
Chocolates, Jellies and Wafers, all vegan, all one pound. Welcome to Christmas at the nation's favourite pound shop. Poundland isn't the first place you'd think to look for vegan confectionery at Christmas, but there are bargains to be had there. Our haul comprises three types of jellies, two sorts of choccies and a huge bag of wafers:
Australian confectionery brand Allsep's products are not widely available in the UK, but their vegan Party Mix jellies are. These are firm jellies, but not quite hard gums...think somewhere between jelly babies and wine gums. The sweets in each bag are in a whole range of shapes, colours and flavours...hence the 'party' moniker:
Probably not the first place to look for vegan confectionary, but the National Trust has a pretty good selection at some of their locations. Vegan toffee bon-bons are still as rare as hen's teeth so to find them sitting there in an NT gift shop is quite a surprise. Even vegetarian jellies are still unusual, and what about hard liquorice without gelatin or beeswax:
There was a time when pretty much the only vegan chocs you could buy were dark chocolate fondant creams. Mercifully those days are behind us, but it may be time to re-appraise the humble fondant cream, especially in light of these great tasting offerings from The Gourmet Candy Company. The creams are available in Rose and Violet, but avoid the non-vegetarian Lime flavour.
Up against the Holy Cow fudge we reviewed just a few weeks back, this fudge is a clear winner. Winning Ways of Essex, going by the name of the Fabulous Fudge Factory have concocted a dairy-free fudge that has that all important tooth-feel. You can really sink your teeth in to this fudge and we even tried it out on some unsuspecting non-vegans who couldn't tell it was dairy-free.
Peanut butter is one of those 'marmite' foods....either you love it or hate it. For peanut butter lovers (like us), what could be better than a shot of the stuff covered in chocolate? Two of course...in a handy pack...
Lidl continues to be an occasional source of vegan confectionary. In amongst their range of jellies a little vegetarian V gave these away, which on closer inspection were vegan. The vast majority of their jellies are still made with gelatin but it's encouraging to see some progress at the discount end of the market. So here we have vegan American Hard Gums...but are they any good?
Holy Cow, could this be the Holy Grail...in other words the perfect vegan fudge? Sorry to disappoint, but we have to say no. Like most vegan fudges this is more of a sugar fondant than a fudge, without the creamy toffeeness of the dairy stuff. The bite is too firm, with a sudden yield as it breaks, rather than the teeth sinking slowly you'd expect from fudge. There is also that graininess you get with sugar fondants.