How to Junk Food: Dublin Edition

It must be a European thing. Every corner store is Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory. I’m going to tell you about Dublin Junk food, but I’m currently in Iceland, and even here it’s a junk food paradise. Bins of candy as far as the eye can see. And weird shit too. I just ate a butter-frosting filled black licorice piece dipped in milk chocolate. WHO COMES UP WITH SOMETHING LIKE THAT? It was tasty, but RICH. One tiny piece was plenty. More of those candy stories to come. For now I’m going to tell you about Dublin.

You may recall that I took a ferry from London to Dublin. The first thing I did when I got on that ferry was find a store and buy chocolate. It was a long boat ride, okay, I needed boat snacks. I found some gourmet looking candy bars and bought three. BECAUSE MAYBE THEY WOULD MAKE A GOOD GIFT. But also I ate one.

The caramel crunch was chosen as tribe because CARAMEL IS MY JAM. I did save the other two for gifts. I noticed that the caramel is sweeter than I’m used to. Typically, I like caramel a little salty. Like me. When you’ve got sweet chocolate and sweet caramel, it’s just too much.

Later, I bought some sea salt caramel fudge from the Guinness factory. These satisfied my craving for salted caramel a little better, but they were still very sweet. And they didn’t have as much of the Guinness flavor that I’d hoped for. Beer sweets are wonderful, by the way. Some of the best ice cream I’ve ever had was beer ice cream. If you ever encounter it, TRY IT.

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On our cliffs of Moher tour, we filled the long bus ride with a tour of more junk food. Nothing spectacular, but certainly some interesting finds.

In the first two pictures, Emily and I are about to try some kind of gummy candy. They looked like gummy bears, but the outside was coated in a very fine powder, probably corn starch. It wasn’t sweet. The gummies were very soft, almost like eating firmed up jelly. Pretty good. Kind of weird. The second thing I bought because I kept seeing racks and racks of these “tubs” of candy and I picked one that looked interesting. These were toffee flavored bon-bons and had a bit of a chew to them and an okay flavor. Not my favorite. Squashies, though they could have a better aesthetic, were pretty good. Kind of like a marshmallow and a gummy had a baby. And I want to say…strawberry flavored? Lastly–you know Chorizo flavored chips were delicious. HOW CAN YOU GO WRONG THERE.

On the whole, I had more success with bakery items than candy. At the botanical gardens I found this caramel pie that looks like it’s mostly whipped cream but it had plenty of rich caramel and a very buttery crust. This pie was phenomenal. I saw several others like it at other bakeries in Dublin and a few in Norway. Maybe we have this at home and I just haven’t been to the right places. I HOPE THAT IS THE CASE THERE’S NO WAY I CAN REPLICATE THIS AT HOME.

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Also from the pastry department, I found this eclair on our last afternoon in town. IT WAS DELICIOUS. The whipped cream was very light and not too sweet, and the pastry was just a little bit cold–as an eclair should be. I also ate something from the bakery case on the right…but I can’t remember what. Anyway, JUST LOOK AT THIS BEAUTY.

 

As for savory junk food, I found more sausage rolls. These were really different from the ones I had in London. The London rolls were all about the pastry–thick, flaky, buttery. This sausage roll had an understated pastry and a very big filling. It also wasn’t like a sausage link, but rather a sausage mash with a bunch of other stuff in it. I got the one with cranberry and it tasted like Thanksgiving. DELICIOUS. Moral of the story: when you come across a sausage roll, eat it.

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There were a few other treats and some good meals, but ALL I HAVE TO SAY TO YOU IS THIS: When you travel to a new place, try some weird shit. You will suffer disappointments, yes, but at lest you can say you tried something new. And sometimes you stumble on something awesome. Eat well, my friends.

 

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