Positively addictive, these chewy caramels are made from coconut palm sugar, then topped with puffed brown rice. The decadent, rich caramel is dipped in bittersweet chocolate, and finished with a delicate dusting of sea salt. It’s no wonder these handmade bars have a cult following.
Learn more about Kika’s Treats on their website.
As with most chocolate-y, caramel-y confections, I recommend selecting a black tea to enjoy with this treat. I selected this Bolivian Whole Leaf Black Tea from KTeas to drink while tasting this candy, and it was the perfect choice. The deep caramel-y flavors of the tea complemented the sweetness of the candy without adding a more cloying taste to the palate. Instead, it actually seemed to refresh and cleanse the palate. Delightful!
What I Think:
Let me say that again: WOW!
These are amazing! I’m not at all surprised to see that these were voted the Best Caramels at San Francisco’s Chocolate Salon. (As an aside, I think that I really need to attend this Chocolate Salon)
What really surprised me with my first bite was the crispy puffed brown rice. Having not read the description of these caramels before taking a bite, it was a pleasant surprise to discover the crackly crunch of rice “crispies” in this confection.
The bittersweet chocolate is just a thin shell of chocolate, but, it provides the perfect ratio of bitterness to the candy. I really like the balance of tastes. Yes, it is sweet, but it is also salty with just a hint of bitter from that chocolate. One confection tastes neither too sweet or salty or bitter, but, it is sweet enough to satisfy the sweet tooth after just one confection.
The caramel is made from coconut palm sugar, and while I don’t taste a lot of coconut influence in the overall confection, I can taste a hint of coconut there. The texture of the caramel is slightly hard to the tooth when I first bite into the candy, but it quickly gives way and becomes chewy and softer.
I think what I’m enjoying most about these chocolates is that they possess not only a delicious balance of contrasting flavors but also contrasting textures, from the snap of the chocolate to the chewy caramel and crispy rice and crunch of the salt on top … these little squares are packed full of flavor.
My Final Thoughts:
These caramels are really delicious. I don’t know that I like them better than my beloved Fran’s Caramels, but Kika certainly could give Fran a run for her money! I like that this isn’t made from corn syrup (yeah, I know that they say “sugar is sugar” but I like it when I find a candy company that uses alternative sweeteners). Not only does my sweet tooth approve, but somehow, I’m able to rationalize that these are better for me than the average candy bar, and I appreciate that.