You people. You marshmallow lovers. You raucous, inscrutable, dangerously admirable marshmallow lovers. Turns out, you’ve made 232,000 Google pages devoted to “Peeps marshmallow recipes.” You have such daring. Such skill. Such eschewing of tradition. You put Peeps on your peanut butter sandwiches, in your pancakes. Sometimes, you just smack out your miniature flamethrower and torch those suckers up. Surely, I have stumbled into my confectionary tribe. You do realize this will only lead to mischief.
For example, if I were to find myself with two packs of specialty Peeps the day after Thanksgiving, who would stop me? Certainly not you. Certainly not Target. And certainly not this Peep staring at me with its big ol’ waxy eyeball.
And for that, I am grateful because straight from the plastic veneer, Photoshopped with candy canes cut straight from the Windows 92 Clip Art book, the chickadees tumble out like gangbusters: sandy and sugary on the outside with a white fudgy coating glistening on their chickadee rumps, these might be confused for the fowl that grace the lakes of a Sugar Plum Fairy. Oh sure, they’re just glorified gelatin, but dear god, isn’t that what Peeps are all about? How can we expect anything more? How???
Because Peeps is making a promise here. A promise to dish out the Red Velvet Cake in all its cocoa-y, sugary, acidic glory. A promise to which they [somewhat] live up to.
These little mallows are sweet. Straight up sugary. Unquestionably red. The inside is sweet and cocoa-y like Duncan Hines cake batter mixed with chocolate Jell-o pudding. The outside sugar crust has the taste and texture of fine sanding sugar, but with a slight mineral aftertaste, like the faint tarnish of a cast iron skillet (because the party hasn’t started until Red #40 brings the bite of metallic cookware, am I right?)
Thankfully, the white fudge is there to pick up the slack with melty, smooth sweetness. Traditionalists, be forewarned: this isn’t cream cheese icing. Heck, it’s mainly palm kernel oil and dextrose, but it does have a quick melt and is dappled with little sprinkles, making a good show for those who subscribe to the buttercream predilection. If you like your icing sweet, dig in, but, if you’re sensitive to sugar overdose, you may feel like you’re being smacked in the head by a tetherball. Only you can know your limits. Just make sure you bring a graham cracker. S’mores will be in your future.
It’s easy to think of new products as a long chain of evolving improvements, as a never-ending advancement toward largeness and complexity, but Peeps knows not to flatter itself with such delusions. They thrive, nay, celebrate the creation of the same marshmallow sensation over and over. These Peeps are a pretty good riff on that variation. At the best of times*, they made me feel like I was eating cake batter straight outta Martha Stewart’s golden Kitchen Aid. Other times, I felt like I was eating the crust of a rusty nail.
*The worst of times was when I had just put lotion on my hands and wrestled to open the package for 15 minutes.
Aftertastes and mistimed use of moisturizer aside, these Peeps provide marshmallow lovers something different while still sustaining the unique, smooshed Peeps signature. Sure, they may not be astounding, but they remind me that, even when life’s not astounding, I can be grateful that it doesn’t completely suck.
(Nutrition Facts – 3 Chicks/1 pack – 150 calories, 30 calories from fat, 3.5 grams of fat, 3 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 25 milligrams of sodium, 32 grams of carbohydrates, 0 grams of dietary fiber, 30 grams of sugar, and 1 gram of protein..)
Item: Limited Edition Red Velvet Peeps
Purchased Price: $1.99
Size: 3 Peeps Pack
Purchased at: Target
Rating: 5 out of 10
Pros: Doesn’t completely suck. Duncan Hines cake batter. Squishy. Festive fudge glaze. Reason to make s’mores. Reason to pursue Mischief. Windows 92 Clip Art.
Cons: Doesn’t completely suck. Red #40 tastes like a cast iron skillet. Glaze is mainly palm oil and dextrose. Getting smacked by a tetherball. Poorly timed use of moisturizer.