Candies of America


Photo: Melisa Goh/NPR

Nuts for Nut Goodie? Rockin' for an Almond Roca? Your heart melting for some Melty Bar?

From sea to shining sea, Americans love their hometown's candies and NPR's Linton Weeks takes us on an armchair tour of specialty regional sweets that will make your mouth water:

... why do we go on reaching for regional candies? What is it about Washington state's Chukar Cherries, Kentucky's Modjeskas and New York's Sponge Candy that keeps us coming back for more?

Maybe it's because of our nation's fascination with youth and childhood. Or maybe it's because in a globalized world of mass-marketed tastes, particular sweets still trigger particular memories of particular places.

"If one grew up in the Midwest eating Valomilks," says Sifers, the candy-maker, "then to taste them again after many years, it indeed would take you back to the Midwest. I hear that all the time."

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What's your favorite hometown candy? 


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"What is patriotism but the love of the food one ate as a child?" ~Lin Yutang

I didn't grow up in the Ozarks, but we visited there many times when I was a child. There was a small local company that made hard cinnamon stick candies with chewy cinnamon jelly on the outside, which was rolled in sugar. If the company still existed, I'd order those candies. They're inextricably linked with the Ozarks for me.
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