“ Brand: Marks & Spencer / Type: Biscuits „
I can resist anything except temptation. So when I was finishing off a Marks and Spencer's voucher on food staples like milk and butter, as oddly enough where I live M&S is the cheapest option for both at the moment, I saw that Marks' were promoting their own version of Jaffa Cakes.
£1.39 for two packets wrapped together into one package of pure temptation. Very reasonably priced temptation at that. Well, it would have been rude to turn it down.
For that what did I get? Two packets with eleven bisc/cakes in each box. Each one a rounded oblong nestled into its designated place in a ridged tray that kept the yumminess intact until it met my teeth.
They are topped with dark chocolate which blends and contrasts perfectly with both the orange and cake base. The chocolate layer is firm enough to make the bite satisfying without putting fangs at any more risk than usually comes from eating chocolate/orange/cake combinations. The dark chocolate contains a minimum of 59% cocoa solids and the chcolate layer makes up a very tasty 19% of the total cake.
The orange filling is tangy and full of flavour, lifting the whole into incredibly moreish territory. It contains 5% of real orange juice and you can certainly taste this fact.
Moving into the most contraversial area of the Jaffa Cake oevre, the base here leans closer to the biscuit than cake side of the force. It is soft enough to show a tooth impression when meeting the teeth but firm enough to require a bite to part. The firmer base does make for better adhesion between the top two layers and the base and so keeps the whole together better than the norm and makes for a delcious taste sensation.
Ingredient wise this is a mixed bag. On the Yay side, it uses free range eggs - though of course this rules it out for vegans. On the Nay side, it does include glucose-fructose syrup as well as having sugar as the main ingredient - which of course makes it problematic for diabetics.
The cardboard box they come in can be recycled though there is a lot of wasteful packaging here.
Each 11.5g cake will cost 45kcal, which is not bad given the flavour hit it gives. However, because these are so incredibly moreish it will be very hard to stop at one and as you get two boxes for the price of one, even difficult to stop at one box.
But they taste so good that the diet will go down in calorific flames delicously.
When standing in the queue at a Marks and Spencer store, this double pack of M and S own brand jaffa cakes, forced themselves into my arms along with my other purchases. We were en-route on a very long journey and they seemed like a perfect in car treat. At £1.39 for the 2 packs I thought that they were well priced. Each box contained 11 biscuits / cakes with a total weight of 125g. I'll refer to them as biscuits in this review as despite their name they do seem more of a biscuit than a cake to me.
The packaging is quite over the top, with the biscuits lined up in a heavy duty moulded plastic tray and then wrapped in cellophane. A rectangular cardboard box then keeps these safe and yet more cellophane seals the two packs boxes together. The outcome of this though is that the biscuits do reach you in tip top condition with none broken, but they certainly aren't environmentally friendly, although the box advises that all of these materials are recyclable. The box is a thin rectangular shape; not what you normally expect from jaffa cakes, but then these biscuits aren't your normal round shape but a rectangular shape too. Orange is the key colour on the box - what else would best suit such a fruity orange flavoured treat. We are told that the contents are golden sponge topped with tangy orange and half coated in dark chocolate - mmmm that sounds good and the pictures of the biscuits look tempting too.
Full ingredient and nutritional information is provided, but the key one that I expect we all want to know are the calories - that'll be 45 per biscuit - not too bad for a treat I think. The packaging does tell you the total recommended amount per day but to be honest I'm never going to do the sums of how many biscuits I could eat on a daily basis and I would really value the use of a traffic light system to tell me if they are high or low in fats, salts etc. In terms of fat though if my maths is correct I could eat about 50 of these per day and be within recommended levels! Sugar is high too, as you would expect.
Other useful information is that they are not suitable for people with a nut allergy, but this is due to the manufacturing facilities and they do not actually contain nuts. I don't have a nut allergy but I do find this highly annoying as I believe food production factories should have specific guaranteed nut free areas to make nut free products in order to give allergy sufferers greater freedom of choice of food to eat. They are however suitable for vegetarians and contain no artificial colourings and preservatives, always a positive thing and they still manage to have a long shelf life - over three months on my pack. Other allergy sufferers should be warned that they contain cows milk, eggs, soya, wheat and gluten.
**And on to the important bit**
Who's ever heard of a jaffa cake being oblong in shape? It's just not right - they always have been and always should be round. They should also be bigger than these teeny weeny little rectangles, which measure a mere 5 x 3cm and are incredibly thin - not quite wafer thin, but only ½ cm. However, I can forgive these short comings in shape and size as they taste absolutely sublime. The balance and consistency of the light sponge base, the thin orange jelly layer and the sumptuous dark chocolate is in my opinion, perfect. The sponge is probably most present as an alternative texture to the gooey jam and rippled chocolate, rather than a distinctive taste. It is about half of the overall depth. The jam layer is very thin, but the tanginess makes this the most dominant flavour and it is very sweet, although not too sweet for me, but I do have a very sweet tooth and they may prove too sweet for some. I expect this is why they are made small, but personally for me one, or even two was just not enough, which does reduce their value for money somewhat. Finally the chocolate is a rich dark colour and it tastes bitter with an obvious high cocoa content and indeed cocoa mass is the top ingredient in the chocolate. I believe there has been no scrimping on using the best ingredients, for example, free range eggs are used, and these own brand biscuits rival the original McVities jaffa cakes exceptionally well in taste. Because of their delicate proportions and thin layer of sponge I may actually go as far as saying that I prefer them.
I do recommend these and at about 6p each compared to McVities which are selling for 10p each with Ocado, they still seem well priced despite their smaller size. I am sure that I will buy them again, but only as a treat as there is nothing healthy about them (except that they contain 5% orange juice - do you think I could get away with counting a packet of these as one of my five a day). Despite them being the wrong shape I still have to give them 4 yummy stars, losing one for the excessive packaging. Actually I think M and S have been quite brave changing the shape - they're growing on me.
MARKS AND SPENCER JAFFA CAKES
Being a Jaffa cake fan for as long as I can remember I recently tried the Marks and Spencer brand. They were on offer for two 125g boxes for £1.00 and it seemed like an excellent time to try them.
They come in an orange box with Dark Chocolate Jaffa Cakes written on the front in brown letters. Under this it says Love At First Bite in while writing. There is a picture of three Jaffa Cakes on there too. On the back of the box the ingredients are printed along with a nut allergy warning and the nutritional values which are per cake:-
of which sugars 5.2g
of which saturates 0.9g
Equivalent as salt Trace
Not too bad on the calorie front if you can stop at one!
The Jaffa Cakes are presented very nicely on a plastic tray, each one in their own little slot. There are eleven Jaffa Cakes in a packet (funny amount) and they are oblong in shape. They smell lovely when you first open the box. The Marks and Spencer Jaffa Cakes are similar to any others. They have the spongy, cakey bit on the bottom. This was very nice and more spongy than McVities. You then have the orangey bit in the middle. This was very fruity and sharp. Really orangey, it tasted lovely, however it didn't really seem like jelly to me the consistency was slightly "mushy". Lastly there is the chocolate, dark, rich and surprisingly thick for a Jaffa cake.
All in all these Jaffa cakes were very nice, they tasted rich and very orangey. My only disappointment is that you cant nibble around the edge of the sponge and separate the layers (something I like to do) but that is just my preference.
I would recommend Marks and Spencer Jaffa Cakes, and urge anyone to give then a try.
Lovely fruity taste
Rich dark chocolate
None. Except I can't separate the layers!
Jaffa cakes are a regular item on my shopping list so I have tried a number of different makes from McVites to shop brands. However, on a recent trip to Llandudno I called in at the M&S to get some basic groceries for when we returned home.
One item was obviously jaffa cakes . M&S were selling two packets of 125g each for £1.29 of their own make of Jaffa Cakes. The jaffa cakes come in a cardboard box that is mainly orange with white writing depicting "Marks and Spencer Dark Chocolate Jaffa Cakes". There is also a picture on the front showing you what to expect inside the packet. On opening the packet there is a golden coloured rippled tray inside a cellophane wrapping, showing the jaffa cakes lying horizontally overlapping one another.
There are unfortunately, only 11 jaffa cakes in each box. They are rectangular shaped and about 5cm by 31/2 cm in size. The top of each cake is coated in dark rich chocolate and the bottom is a lightly coloured golden sponge.
On biting the jaff cake the chocolate layer is crisp, the sponge light and fluffy and the orange filling is very orangey and tangy.
I am not going to list the all the ingredients but I will mention the 19% Dark Chocolate, the Pasteurised free range egg and the 5% concentrated orange juice + natural orange flavouring as I think these contribute to the delicious flavour of the jaffa cake.
On the back of the pack there is information about the product in different coloured strips. In the pink strip it tells you that the product is made in a factory which uses nut ingredients. In the pink strip there is a warning that it contains cow's milk, eggs, soya wheat and gluten and in the green strip that there are no artificial colours, flavouring of hydrogenated fat.
Nutrition Values per cake
Energy KJ 190
Energy Kcal 45
Carbohydrate 7.5g of which 5.2g sugars
Fat 1.5g of which 0.9 is saturates
Equivalent as salt trace.
You are also advised to store in a cool dry place and once opened store in an airtight container. Unfortunately with only 11 biscuits in each box I didn't need the airtight container. They are very moreish and one is just not enough as the delicious mouth watering tangy filling mixes with the dark chocolate and light fluffy sponge they are very hard to resist.
To summarise - a delicious jaffa cake for sheer indulgence once in a while but are more expensive then other makes but then it is M&S.