Tunnock's Tea Cake wrapper

Jennifer's guide to Scottish sweets

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Blogger Jennifer shares with us some sweet Scottish secrets. Here's how to rot your teeth – the Glasgow way!

This waist betrays me; I've known my fair share of sweets in my day. I was a candy connoisseur before there were boutique candy shops to satisfy sugar-addicted folks like myself. I knew which local stores carried foreign and black-market American candy when I was a kid. Before boutique candy shops, you had to hunt around for those sugary sweets guaranteed to rot your mouth.

As such, I have carefully set about eating the sweets of Scotland, braving the cavities and calories of this land's offerings .

1. Tunnock's Snowball
Delicious fluffy marshmallows, whipped into a fervour, and covered in creamy milk chocolate. Do you need a cigarette? I do after writing that.

2. Coconut ice
If you still have your own teeth beware of this achingly sweet treat. Chewy and creamy, this candy is pretty much made out of sugar and coconut. A bit like fudge only better.

Coconut ice
Coconut ice: pink, white and chewy

3. Tunnock's Tea Cakes

I think I could probably eat at least three of these in one sitting. I think I'm addicted. For all you Canadians, they are kind of like Dare Viva Puffs only they aren't disgusting. Tunnock's Tea Cakes are filled with creamy marshmallow goodness and finished off with a biscuit bottom. I would move across the ocean for you, Tea Cakes! Err...

4. Caramel shortcake
Ohmygod. Where do I even begin? The milk chocolate layer which is followed by creamy caramel? Or the buttery shortbread bottom that combines it all into one major mouthgasm. The first time I ate one of these, I had to take a nap afterwards from the sugar crash. My body was unable to digest such quantities of sugar (which is rare) and I could barely string together a sentence. When eating one, I would pencil in a nap afterwards.

5. Polly pastilles

These are a mix between wine gums and jelly babies. I don't know how else to describe them other than being yummy and, of course, awful for one's dental hygiene.

6. Scottish tablet
Ok, this might actually be one of the best sweets in the world – but only when it's homemade. There is quite a good restaurant here, The Pig and The Butterfly, who give out complimentary homemade tablet at the end of your meal. Damn, it's worth going to just for the tablet, let alone the food. I'm actually going there for lunch tomorrow and can hardly wait. Forget lunch – just give me mountains of tablet to eat my way out of!

Tablet: the ultimate Scottish tooth rotting tool

7. Tunnock's Caramel Wafer

A Scottish tradition. A way of life. Milk chocolate enrobes caramel and wafers in this gorgeous wee biscuit. Again, best if they are fresh and haven't been sitting on the shelf at Tesco for months. Apparently Tunnock's makes "more than 4,000,000" of these biscuits every week. I probably account for 1,000 of those.

8. Tunnock's Caramel Log
Kind of like the above but with coconut too. I worship at the House of Tunnock's.


Tunnock's display stand

 Tunnock's: let us give thanks


Jennifer is a Canadian living amongst the puckered pale flesh and scorching ginger hair of Glaswegians. After a mid-twenties life crisis and yearning to escape puritan ‘Toronto the Good’, she moved to Glasgow in March 2006. Follow her at www.idreamofhaggis.com.


Photo credit: Tunnock's display stand by chatirygirl (Flickr.com)

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3 Comments To This Article

  • Polly Parker posted:

    on 29th October 2010, 17:13:41 - Reply

    If you really really want to see or have some traditional British made sweets delivered anywhere in the world, check out my online sweetshop www.sweetiesonline.co.uk.
    I send sweets all over the world to ex-pats and also to BFPO addresses.
    If you want a particular sweet, I will source it and send.
  • EditorUK posted:

    on 13th July 2010, 11:51:35 - Reply

    I don't remember that, but from the ingredients list it looks pretty bad (in a good way)!


    Good luck with your recovery,

  • isobel irvine posted:

    on 25th June 2010, 17:57:50 - Reply

    Thanks for the trip down memory lane. My mouth is now watering. After implant surgery two weeks ago I wouldn't dare recreate any of these in my kitchen. Maybe I could suck on some SWISS MILK TOFFEE.
    Remember that?