Monday, January 30, 2017

Bakeable Mini Sweet Potato Kit-Kat - Asian Food Market

Bakeable Mini Sweet Potato Kit-Kat - Asian Food Market 
I hope you guys had a great weekend. Mine was filled with permits, variances, and car shopping, with a little Fruit Ninja VR mixed in for good measure, but there is a light at the end of my short sale home-buying tunnel! It's so close I can taste it! Or maybe that's just the Kit-Kat's...
Bakeable Japanese Kit-Kat bars were introduced in 2014, and they were a pretty big deal. You'd think baking a candy bar would make it all melty, but these bars have a white chocolate-base, so they get a crispy caramelized finish that looks a lot like crème brûlée! How freaking cool is that 
So far Japan has released three four different bakeable flavors: pudding, sweet potato, butter cookie and cheesecake. Even though I had my heart set on the pudding ones, I found the sweet potato ones at the Asian Food Market and scooped them up anyway! (I don't like sweet potatoes, but I couldn't resist.) 
This flavor was released a while ago, and the bag was obviously tossed around a bit before it appeared on the shelves at my local Asian Food Market, and then after that it sat around in my junk-food stash for a few it's lived a little, but it still photographs well. 
Design-wise the front of the bag is bold and basic. We've got a huge image of the "raw" and baked Kit-Kat bars, a pile of sweet potato pastries, and a little toaster oven graphic. Simple, straightforward, and eye catching. Flip the bag over and HOLY-SENSORY-OVERLOAD-BATMAN, there's a lot going on here. The top portion shows you how to properly bake these candy bars with clear and easy to understand illustrations. The rest of the text seems to be gift ideas and nutritional information, so all-in-all, this isn't a stunning bag of candy, but it gets props for being so easy to comprehend despite language barriers.
Inside the bag are 13 individually wrapped 2-bar packages. Yup, you only get 13 of these little guys! Which seems like a generous amount, until you look at the price tag. This is an imported item, and they're often released seasonally as limited edition products, so when you do find these bags in America, they are marked up like crazy. I've seen bags sell for $10-$18! I can't remember how much I paid for this bag, but I want to say it was $13 USD (if I find my receipt I'll update the post). That's about as high as I'll go, since that works out to $1.00 per-bar, anything beyond that? No thank you!
In it's "raw" state, the bars are a bright yellow color and they smell like honey-flavored syrup mixed with white chocolate. No hint of legit sweet potatoes here! I tried it as-is, and the bar tastes very sweet, like honey flavored candy melts, with the classic Kit-Kat wafer crunch. It's enjoyable, but not sweet potato-like, or really anything all that special.
I grabbed a little piece of tinfoil, popped a bar on top, and baked it in my toaster oven to see if it would taste any different toasted. Instead of setting a timer, I just kept an eye on the bars to see when it achieved the same caramelization level as shown on the bag. At first the bar looked like it was just melting in there, but then the top portion started to brown and slightly bubble bit to achieve... 
This crispy caramelized goodness! It looks like some kind of ladyfinger, or teeny tiny pastry. I can't get over how sweet and honey-like this aroma is! My b/f has a really keen sense of smell and he thinks these smell like an eggy custard or pudding, but I stand firm with my honey statement. I've bought cheap golden-syrup-style honeys from the Asian Food Market in the past and THIS is exactly what they smell like. 
Moment of truth time, does it taste anything like a sweet potato?
NOPE! It tastes sweet, sugary, caramelized and due to it's honey-like notes it reminds me of flan or pudding way more than anything resembling a sweet potato. I like it! I really do! And toasting it gives it a much richer flavoring and crispier texture than you'd get when eating it "raw" right out of the package, so it's not just a gimmick. It really is the best way for you to enjoy the complex flavoring of the candy bar.
I shared some of these with my mom, my b/f, and K, and all three agreed that it was tasty, but that it had absolutely nothing in common with actual sweet potatos. Opinions ranged from custard, to pudding, to crème brûlée and I agree with all three! This is a rich, caramelized, candy bar that is worth checking out even if you're a sweet potato hater like me. 
If you're able to find these in your area, or online, and the price is $13USD or below, I'd say these are a really fun treat worth checking out, but I wouldn't recommend paying anything more than that. (Gotta be a frugal foodie!)  
 © Maria Smith
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1 comment:

  1. They should done in the US as creme brulee Kit Kat. Same concept minus the sweet potato