A Chocolate Tale Of Surprise

Two weeks ago, Canada Post delivered a box to my house.

Mail is rare in my neck-of-the-woods, unless it’s a flyer from a local business or some political candidate, so this was a real novelty.

Aussie pkg

The Australian stamps on the box instantly got my attention. NO! … she didn’t!! YESSSSS!!! She did!!!

The box was from my Super Aussie Friend, Heather at Master of Something I’m Yet To Discover. … and it was full of Australian treats!!

You see, while we may live very different lives half a world apart, Heather and I share many things in common … including a rather odd sense of humour and a Jack-of-all-Trades approach to life … oh, and chocolate – definitely chocolate.

A few months ago we had an exchange of comments on a post that triggered a quest to find Vegemite in Canada and brave a try of this salty paste. That ultimately resulted in the great Vegemite vs Marmite taste test that had me dubbed an honorary Aussie for giving Vegemite two thumbs up.

So.  What do you think was in my surprise box of treats?

If you guessed chocolate and Vegemite, you would be right … but not just any chocolate and Vegemite.  It included a limited edition Cadbury chocolate-vegemite bar.  OH MY!  I had wanted so much to try this chocolate bar.

Aussie pkg 2

Each one of these treats had been lovingly wrapped and tightly taped -with a slightly sadistic edge – in bubblewrap.  In other words, I had to really work for it.

Because I have the willpower of a 5 year-old with ADHD, I was preparing to promptly dig into the Cadbury Vegemite bar with wild abandon when I noticed the *resealable* wrapper.  Resealable?

Does that mean it’s not normal to hoover an entire giant bar in one sitting? … and what’s this about eating treats *wisely* as part of a balanced diet?

Aussie pkg 3

I was beginning to feel my honorary Aussie status slip away.  Clearly  I had character flaws that weren’t going to measure up to Aussie standards.

With an oh-well shrug of my shoulders, I dug into each. and. every. one. of these treats.

The verdict ….

TimTam … is a nice, light chocolate biscuit.  I think I might have had two … Gilles ate the rest of the package over the next several days. They were good, but I prefer something a little richer in taste.  Interesting that Gilles agreed with my verdict only AFTER he had finished the package.

Violet Crumble … I savoured this one sloooooowly over several days.  It was delightful and reminded me of a Crunchie bar.  In fact I was seriously tempted to go out and get a Crunchie bar to have a comparison test, but I resisted because – well, you know – chocolate issues … I don’t need any more excuses to eat chocolate.


Image from Flickr

Finally, the Chocolate-Vegemite bar … was totally not what I was expecting!

In fact I needed to enlist taste tests from a few other chocoholics for their reaction to ensure I hadn’t developed a serious defect in my taste buds.  Everyone – including Gilles, who finally tried it out of curiosity – agreed with my assessment.

It tastes like salted caramel!!

Diehard vegemite haters were as surprised as I was.  What’s not to love about chocolate and the flavour of salted caramel?

Thank you so much Heather.  I got a lot of mileage out of this package and I think most of the calories were damaged in transit from Australia … so it’s all good.

I should mention that Heather had a co-conspirator in sending me this package.  Although Heather had already implicated her, Maggie at The Zombies Ate My Brains finally confessed to divulging my address.  Isn’t that what good friends are for?

About Joanne Sisco

Retired but not idle. Life is an adventure - I plan to continue to embrace it.
This entry was posted in Friends, Random Stuff and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

126 Responses to A Chocolate Tale Of Surprise

  1. Pingback: The Great International Chocolate Exchange | Master of Something I'm Yet To Discover

  2. What a totally awesome thing to get in the mail!
    Hehe, vegemite. Got that from an Australian couchsurfer once. I didn’t like the taste (and it’s not gluten free either if I remember correctly).


  3. treerabold says:

    What a fantastic care package!! I am quite jealous. I have not tried any of the treats in your care package…but anything with chocolate is worthy of jealousy!!!


  4. LB says:

    So I drop in to see how the bicycle riding is going and what do I find you’ve been up to?
    Eating chocolate! GOOD FOR YOU!
    Your writing style made me laugh out loud (the willpower of a 5 year old with ADHD)!
    What a truly fun package!


  5. Su Leslie says:

    Yay to Aussie treats! I haven’t seen Vegemite chocolate here in NZ, but I guess that’s because we’re definitely a Marmite (NOT the UK muck) country. Tim Tams I’m not crazy about, but Violet Crumble ….. YUUUM. Much (in my humble opinion) better than Crunchies. Glad you enjoyed your taste of downunder. 🙂


  6. Alright, reseal and chocolate is an oxymoron like leftover wine 🙂 What a sweet idea. I have never heard of the chocolate you guys are eating, but it looks yummy


  7. The proper use for a Tim Tam is to bite the ends off and and use it as a straw for drinking hot cocoa. Melty chocolate heaven.


  8. badfish says:

    I love getting Care Packages from dear friends. But Chocolate-Vegemite. No, no. Please none of that for the badfish, please! Dark chocolate from Godiva, fine.


  9. Mrs. P says:

    How fun! I am not a fan of Vegemite but I think I have had a Violet Crumble before and as I recall, it was tasty.

    I am a huge fan of Cadbury…it is my favorite chocolate but ever since the legal battle between Nestle and Cadbury things have changed. The UK Cadbury is no longer available and Nestles changed the formula but use the brand name Cadbury. It’s just not the same! I miss my UK Cadbury bars. I think salty caramel sounds great…I would try that bar!


  10. NancyTex says:

    I got a bloggy care package 2 years ago and it included Tim Tams (2 flavours) along with a jar of vegemite and other goodies. I loved the Tim Tams. Then again, an old shoe would taste better than vegemite, so my standards were pretty low at the time.


    • joannesisco says:

      LOL! Sorry you didn’t like the vegemite. I actually smeared a tiny bit on my eggs this morning. Yum! …. 😉

      My sweet tooth needs something a little higher octane that a TimTam though 🙂


  11. Elly McDonald says:

    I consider myself an Aussie chocolate bar connoisseur: Violet Crumble, Pollywaffle, Chokito, Cherry Ripe… these are the love songs of my youth (and decades and since). Biscuits? (Or as North Americans know them, cookies?) My father worked at Arnotts, home of the Tim-Tam, Iced Vo-Vo, Monte Carlo, Gaiety, Mint Slice, Caramel Crown… Stop me now.

    But I have never heard of a Vegemite chocolate concoction. And I must say it sounds more than *slightly* sadistic. Heather, have you been holding out on me?

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Interesting to read what others think of our iconic chocolate variations. Vegemite chocolate is very new and I haven’t tried it as yet. I think I might break my no-sugar eating and see what all the talk is about. Cadbury chocolate factory is right here in Tasmania. I wonder if your lovely gift came from the Tasmanian factory or the Victorian ones… How lovely of your friend to send you all those yummy goodies.

    Liked by 1 person

    • joannesisco says:

      Too bad I’ve eaten it all and no longer have the wrapper. I could have checked its place of birth 🙂
      I’m in awe of your no-sugar eating. I’ve been trying to go sugar-free since the beginning of the year. So far my record is 10 days. I’m weak and my addiction is deeply engrained 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Corina says:

    Lucky! I’ve never tried vegemite but I’ve had Cadbury and TimTams. When my son and I went to Australia, we bought about 30 packages of TimTams to bring back as gifts. I think of the 30 less than 10 made it home. We couldn’t stop eating them. And the Cadbury. Surprisingly, at least to me, Australia has the most delicious licorice you have ever tasted. We brought back a lot of that too! I almost want to go again just for the chocolate and the licorice. Then again, the whole country was amazing!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. What a lucky blogger you are! What a delightful thing for your Australian friends to do but they also clearly understood how much you’d appreciate it.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Paardje says:

    I’m jealous! How I wish to swap stuff with other bloggers. The delicious friendship of it all ❤ 😉


  16. bikerchick57 says:

    Heather is an enabler…of the good kind.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Nancy says:

    Alright let me say right up front that I am fascinated by this whole topic! I had to go back and read all the other post so I could get the full picture. I’m not sure I would like either Vegemite or Marmite spreads based on their description alone (what exactly is a “yeast extract”) but the photos reminded me of eating apple butter on bread when I was little.
    Now the candy bars I may give a thumbs up because, hey, anything surrounded by chocolate is going to have possibilities. I’ve never heard of some of the items but we do have Cadbury here in the states. It’s not really my favorite and I know, based on some of the other comments, that I’m going to take some grief about this but I’m a Hershey girl! To be fair though, I am a product of my environment. We are only an hour and a half drive from Hershey Pa. The kids go there on class trips, for crying out loud! I grew up with it and even though I’ve had some European chocolates (we have a friend who brings us Polish chocolate) which I find is creamier, I still prefer Hershey. If however, anyone would like to send me a box of European or Canadian chocolates just so I can compare, I will gladly write a post about it! 😊


    • joannesisco says:

      LOL!!!!!! We clearly are products of our environment. We won’t hold your love for Hershey chocolate against you 🙂 Chocolate, regardless of its various forms, should be embraced for the thing of beauty it really is!

      … and yes, now that you mention it, the Marmite in particular does look a lot like apple butter. That’s where the similarities end. I don’t know what a yeast extract is either, but a thin spread on toast is quite delightful 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  18. mickscogs says:

    I have tried the vegemite chocolate thing and I was not a fan. As for tim tams – too sweet; but the dark chocolate ones are not bad. I like high % cocoa chocolate so you can see I’m not all that big on sugar. What a treat to receive all those things though. Lucky you.


    • joannesisco says:

      I think you and I are on polar opposite ends of the sweetness range. I laughed at your comment that the TimTams were too sweet!! My favourite cookie is a Maple Cookie that I suspect would send you into sugar shock 😉
      On the other hand, I’m not a fan of dark chocolate. My sugar addicted taste buds are left wondering what all the fuss is about 🙂


  19. Sammy D. says:

    Awww what a super nice surprise. Even an empty box all the way from Aussie would be a mail treat but to find it filled with delicious empty calories is the mark of a true friend 😀. Such fun to have taste testers too 🍷 i lack an emoticon for chocolate. That is a serious defect!!

    Liked by 1 person

  20. bkpyett says:

    Joanne, what a special parcel and post! Heather is far more informed than many Australians about these treats, so I’m pleased she was able to introduce you to a few of them. It’s wonderful to hear your comments. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • joannesisco says:

      Thank you! She really made my day. Ever since I had heard about the limited edition chocolate bar, I was hoping someone would write a post about it and let me know their impression. Heather gave me such a thrill to be the one to write that post!!

      Liked by 1 person

  21. Sue Slaght says:

    How fun is that!? What a fantastic and fun surprise! I would have been with you in the hoovering of chocolate. 🙂


  22. Heyjude says:

    I quite like Cadbury’s chocolate too, though it’s not as good as ‘proper’ chocolate. No-one should be made to eat Hershey bars. I shall have to look for that Vegemite version, I wonder if they sell it here? Sounds gross, but as I like salted caramel (and confess to polishing off half a carton of salted caramel ice-cream this evening) perhaps it’s worth the risk. But what made my eyes water was the postage! Yikes AUD29.70! Now I remember why I stopped sending parcels to Australia…

    Heather, you ARE a real pal (but I’m not sure you should be fattening Jo up – she is supposed to be in training isn’t she?) xx

    Liked by 1 person

  23. beeblu says:

    Blogging is bad for one’s waist! 🙂


  24. This is so great, Joanne! Love the post. Made me laugh so much, especially the bit about sadistic sticky tape. 😀
    1. I am kicking myself I didn’t tell you about the TimTam Slam. (You bite off two diagonal corners and then dip it in a cup of coffee and suck the coffee up through the biscuit.) I don’t do it myself as I don’t like to pollute my coffee with anything other than milk but it’s an Aussie experience. Next time. 😉
    2. You mean you’re not going to be the Canadian Peacekeeper and resolve the decades-long Crunchie vs Violet Crumble War?
    3. I know, right?! Totally not gross at all. You can still taste the Vegemite, though, don’t you think? What I liked was it has such a strong, rich flavour, I didn’t need to eat quite so much of it in one sitting as usual. A block of chocolate never lasted so long. 🙂

    This makes me very, very happy. And I must thank Helen at the Post Office next time I see her for picking out some great Aussie stamps to put on the box.

    PS Did you know it only cost me A$10 more to post that whole box to Canada than it did to post about half that from New York to Wisconsin??


    • joannesisco says:

      1) Apparently TimTams are going to be available in Canada … Gilles had just listened to a radio show the same day that box had arrived. Hence his interest in trying – and eating – all the cookies 🙂
      If I run into some TimTams in my travels, I must try a Slam!!
      I was actually saying to Gilles that I thought the cookie needed coffee 🙂

      2) Without doing an actual side-by-side taste test, I would have thought the Violet Crumble was a Crunchie. That’s how similar in taste and texture they were to me. mmmm!!

      3) You’re totally right about the rich flavour of the chocolate-vegemite. I don’t often have a square or two or chocolate and feel fully sated. I thought the bar was a winner.

      … and yes, Helen at the Post Office did a wonderful job … as did you ❤ I laughed so much at how carefully you had wrapped each piece like they were precious heirlooms 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • 1. How funny is that? You’ll have a bit to catch up, though. We have about 11 different flavours now. Just picked up a new one yesterday – Three Bean (coffee, vanilla & cocoa).
        2. I find the honeycomb more solid in a Violet Crumble and less likely to just fizz in your mouth. My ideal would be the honeycomb from a Violet Crumble coated in the chocolate from a Crunchie.
        3. 🙂

        I don’t trust those airport baggage handlers…. (I love bubble wrap. Just to play with. Hours of popping fun. Oh, and those…what do you call them?…the air pillow things? Just made for jumping on and making a very loud bang. 😀 )


        • joannesisco says:

          1. Really?! Eleven different flavours! Wow.

          2. Now that you mention it, yes … the honeycomb in a Crunchie dissolves in your mouth while the Violet Crumble became more toffee-like. While the texture is different, I still suspect the taste is the same.

          … is there anyone who doesn’t love playing with bubblewrap? 🙂

          Liked by 1 person

  25. Salted caramel?! Really? I might have to hunt some down and do a taste test 🙂


  26. How funny, Joanne…..either Maggie and you are in a losing weight contest and she’s trying to trip you up so she can win, or she just really is that good a friend! Lovely gesture on Heather’s part and I can’t imagine anyone else getting so much mileage out of this gift. Perfect!

    Liked by 1 person

  27. Joe says:

    Very cool post and surprise package Joanne 🙂


  28. Oh my, Cadbury’s! How I remember that from my decades of living in the UK. I will eat it, but it’s not my fave, I must confess. Too crumbly in texture, with a weird hint in its aftertaste. I sure would like to compare the UK and the Aussie versions, though. Hey, for anyone who wants to send me chocolate my address is up for grabs 😉


    • joannesisco says:

      LOL!! I think Heather might have started something 🙂

      I LOVE Cadbury chocolate. I would go as far as to say it’s my favourite.
      I think UK Cadbury is creamier than Canadian. Canadian chocolate tends to be more sugary … and since I have sugar issues, well, that says it all.

      I was too busy concentrating on the flavour of the Aussie Cadbury to notice whether it resembles Canadian or UK. Damn – and I have none left 😦

      I find European chocolate VERY creamy … probably too creamy for my taste … but then again, maybe my taste is rather unsophistocated.
      … and I don’t care for American chocolate – especially Hersey’s – which tends to have that funny aftertaste you mentioned.

      The wonders of international chocolate is all part of the great mysteries of the universe that we need to solve 😉

      Liked by 1 person

    • Elly McDonald says:

      Cadbury’s Australia changed to a different type of vegetable oil a couple of years ago and the change was not for the better.


      • Interesting. The “problem” with Cadbury’s in the UK (from the perspective/taste perception of other European consumers) was that they used cheap vegetable oil from the beginning, instead of cocoa butter.


  29. Totally not jealous cause, you know, I get to sample chocolate every day that arrives in the mail!!


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