Top Pick Of The Week

August 24, 2010

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Licorice “shooters.” All photography by Katharine Pollak | THE NIBBLE.

WHAT IT IS: Licorice from Australia, where they spell it “liquorice.”
WHY IT’S DIFFERENT: No corn syrup, no anise extract substituting for licorice extract.
WHY WE LOVE IT: Robust flavors, a hearty chew and a perky beauty in the candy dish.

.Licorice Candy: A Tastier Chew From Australia (Where It’s Spelled Liquorice)


CAPSULE REPORT: In one verse of the famous Australian Kookaburra Song, the bird is perched in a tree eating sweets:


Kookaburra sits on the old gum tree,
Eating all the gum drops he can see.
Stop, Kookaburra! Stop, Kookaburra!
Save some there for me.*

*Sing along to all the words and music.

You can leave all the gum drops to the kookaburra, as long as you get your fair share of Australian liquorice (the U.K. spelling).

Licorice is a “healthier candy”: no cholesterol, no salt. Few Americans have grown up without sampling bags of Twizzlers or licorice ropes.

But Aussies simply outdo American manufacturers in making superior licorice. It has more robust flavor, a better chew and a lower, more adult level of sweetness. Mass-marketed American licorice can substitute corn syrup for the sugar and anise extract for licorice extract.

Check out the differences in the full review of Kookaburra Liquorice. Start with the article index below.

NOTE: Historically, licorice root has been used as a remedy for quite a few ills. Only black licorice contains licorice root. Chocolate and fruit licorice—cherry, raspberry, strawberry etc.—use flavorings rather than licorice extract to achieve the flavor.

  • Find reviews of more of our favorite
THE NIBBLE does not sell the foods we review
or receive fees from manufacturers for recommending them.

Our recommendations are based purely on our opinion, after tasting thousands of products each year, that they represent the best in their respective categories.

Make Candy At Home

A Field Guide To Candy   Sweet! The Delicious Story Of Candy   Candy Making For Dummies
Field Guide to Candy: How To Identify and Make Virtually Every Candy Imaginable, by Anita Chu. A nice compendium of the different types of candy. There are better cookbooks. Learn more.  

Sweet!: The Delicious Story of Candy, by Ann Love and Jane Drake. No need to make candy—just learn all about it from the beginning of man’s history. The time line begins at 6000 B.C.E.! Learn more.

  Candy Making For Dummies, by David Jones. Great for beginners, and a valuable reference guide for all home candy makers. And no, you’re not a dummy: It’s “A Reference For The Rest Of Us.” Learn more.


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