“ Brand: Kraft / Type: Biscuits „
Oreos are big all over the world, but more massive in some places than others. WalMarts in the USA may have aisles dedicated to everything from double stuffed to chocolate covered to Oreo cakesters, cereals, ice creams and cheesecakes, but over here we're not quite so lucky. Still, my local supermarket has a few sorts, and my latest purchase was these. I've seen them quite a bit in the UK - mainly in pound shops - but never tried them as there were always more interesting things on offer. Here, not so much.
Before we begin, I should say I'm not a huge fan of berry fruit, except in toiletries. I love citrus fruits but never really got into berries. I don't get ecstatic over berry yogurts (plain natural yogurt is just fine) or cereals (bran flakes are all I need) or smoothies (honey and vanilla bean, all the way). I'm under no delusions that fruit flavours make something healthy, and know that most of the time they're all artificial and full of sugar anyway. So, in the UK, I'm not going to buy fruity biccies when there are so many nicer ones available. Or so I thought. Having scoffed a packet of these in under 2 days, and gone immediately back for more, I'm eating my words (as well as these cookies), as they are amazingly and surprisingly delish.
Strawberry Crème Oreos are nothing too fancy or unusual. They are not bigger, don't have more filling, aren't covered or topped with extra chocolate. They are simply normal Oreos, but with a flavoured centre. For anyone who has been living under a rock for the last few years, here's a brief description of the Oreo concept. They take two round 'wafer cookies' and sandwich them together with a sort of fondant cream. This comes in the form of a circular disk whose diameter is less than that of the cookies, do it doesn't quite go up to the edge and spill over. The fondant is quite firm but not too sticky, so you can usually pick off either the top or bottom of each cookie if you wish, and eat the biscuit separately. You can even dunk them in milk, though that would surely be a waste of a good cookie. Dunking in orange juice, however, would be a fine idea for the boring vanilla version.
The biscuits used in Oreos are what I call 'vaguely chocolate' flavoured. They also do Golden Oreos in the USA which are supposed to be vanilla flavoured instead. I wouldn't say the biscuits are the nicest chocolate biccies I've ever had, but have a hint of a flavour to them and aren't really meant to be eaten separately, unless you're dunking them. Alone (i.e. picked off from the cream filling) I find the cookies a bit dry, almost dust like. The texture is a bit funny, softer than say a bourbon or a custard cream, but not really a pink wafer style, and very crumbly. They're a dark, almost black colour, so you really notice when the crumbs start to fall.
Inside, Oreos feature a sort of fondant cream and this is coloured to match the flavour, so white for vanilla, brown for chocolate, beige for peanut butter, and a pretty pink for these strawberry ones. Looking at them you immediately expect them to have a berry flavour which I like: I think it's good when something looks like it will taste. These are much brighter than plain Oreos, and somehow look more appetising and unusual, though that may be the girl in me, immediately drawn to pretty pastels. I also think these would be nice to put out with coffee, perhaps along with another type of biscuit to make a mini selection. In America they do orange Halloween Oreos, and red Christmas ones, but these are enough for me for now.
Beyond the colour, these also smell different to normal Oreos. The fruit flavour is distinct and strong when you open the packet, and it wafts up every time you fish one out of the foil tube. It smells good and, like the colour, made me want to try them immediately.
The fondant in all Oreos is soft and fluffy and wonderfully creamy. These ones are really sweet but also tangy. You can definitely taste the fruit flavour, and the contrast between this and the plainer, almost bitter biscuits, is great. They really do taste of strawberry, not even some generic raspberry/strawberry mix, or random generic berry flavour. They are tart but not unpleasantly so.
I wasn't expecting to find these more than mediocre, but they were superb and really made me think strawberry-and-chocolate a good combination, almost on a par with mint-and-chocolate, and orange-and-chocolate. The fruitiness is at once both sharp and light, and these are a great summery biscuit (says the gal currently living in the land of perpetual sun).
As always, I think the cookies strike the perfect balance of biscuit (the right level of softness without being either crispy or soggy) and fluffy, thick centre. The ratio of filling to cookie is spot on and even though it doesn't look like masses, there is enough crème to make every bite both moist and full of flavour. They are sweet but not sickly, and I can eat more of these in one go than I can regular Oreos, perhaps because some of the taste is from the fruit flavour, not just sugar.
These cost the same as other Oreos, so about £1 per packet. I would expect them to be in British supermarkets soon since they're already in the import market, clogging up the Indian-run convenience stores of Greater Manchester. At least I'll know where to find them when I return, now I'm so taken with them.
I recently reviewed peanut butter Oreos, with the caveat that you are unlikely to enjoy them if you don't like the creamy or crunchy stuff. That's not so much the case with these. I don't like strawberries (or even strawberry ice cream) but these are lush. Somehow adding chocolate and putting them in biscuit form changes them completely. Conversely if you do like the fruit you might not automatically be a fan, but they don't taste terribly artificial, just different from the seedy fruit. Even if you don't think they'd be your thing, try them. You might be surprised. I certainly was.