From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
The term confectionery refers to food items rich in sugar. Different dialects of English also use regional terms for items of confectionery -- confections. Thus we find "sweets" in British English; "lollies" in Australian English and New Zealand English and "candy" in American English (although this last term can also refer to a specific range of confectionery and does not include some items called confectionery, see below and the separate article on candy), .
Confectionery items include sweets, lollies, candy bars, chocolate and other sweet items of snack food. The term does not generally apply to cakes, biscuits or puddings which require cutlery to consume, although exceptions such as petits fours or meringues exist. Speakers in the United States do not refer to these items as "candy".
American English classifies many confections as candy. The many categories and types of candy include:
- Hard candy: Based on sugars cooked to the hard-crack stage, including suckers, lollipops, jawbreakers, lemon drops, peppermint drops and disks, candy canes, rock candy, etc.
- Fudge: Although some people regard any soft, chocolate-flavored confection as 'fudge', the name properly refers to a confection of milk and sugar boiled to the soft-ball stage.
- Toffee (or Taffy): Based on sugars cooked to the soft-ball stage and then pulled to create an elastic texture.
- Tablet: A crumbly milk-based soft candy, based on sugars cooked to the soft-ball stage. Comes in several forms, such as wafers and heart shapes.
- Chewing gum: Uniquely made to be chewed, not swallowed.
- Gum/Gelatin candies: Based on gelatins, including gum drops, jujubes, turkish delight, jelly beans, gummies, etc.
- Marshmallow: "Peeps" (a trade name), circus peanuts, etc.
- Chocolates: Used in the plural, usually referring to small balled centers covered with chocolate to create bite-sized confectionery. Chocolates should consist of almost all chocolate.
- Marzipan: An almond-based confection, doughy in consistency, and often formed into shapes mimicking (for example) fruits, which marzipan-makers can then paint with food colorants.
- Licorice: Containing extract of the licorice root. Chewier and more resilient than gum/gelatin candies, but still designed for swallowing.
- Halvah: Confectionery based on tahini, a paste made from ground sesame seeds.