I am obsessed with fizzy cola bottles. It's a childhood thing, I guess; that trip down to the shop every Saturday morning to get Transformers for 32p, and the rest of the 50p being spent on sweets. Eighteen cola bottles, each so sour that you'd screw your face up in all sorts of contortions on every bite. The newsagents that I used to village is now a horrible little Tesco Local that somehow manages to have half the things that Jay Kays used to and still feel cramped (I'm guessing growing up has a part in this, but I think that remodelling has indeed made the place much smaller), and cola bottles have never really tasted the same since some point in my teens. Since I've started making sweets and chocolates last year, I've had a few attempts at making gelatin gummies, but they've all been complete failures, except for an odd batch of blue raspberry strips that I made almost by accident last Easter. So, time to try again. Normally, you'd add the flavouring just before you pour the gelatin into the molds, using a concentrated flavour compound. This time, however, I decided I'd bloom the gelatin in the flavour I wanted (I used blackcurrant syrup - perhaps cola next time). This way opens up the idea of using any flavoured liquid you have to hand - fairly useful, perhaps. Anyway, these seem to have turned out quite well, leading me to think that I could embark on a pectin version soon (I'd prefer to have a vegetarian-friendly version if possible). Blackcurrant Gummy Bottles I'm also toying around with texture in chocolates at the moment. I want things to be crunchier. I had a go with ground cornflakes a couple of weeks back, which worked fairly well, but after coming across Michael Laiskonis's playing around with caramelized rice, I thought I'd make an All-Caramel version - rice and white chocolate turned wonderfully brown and tasty... Caramel Crunch Next week: I may begin the Giant Creme Egg madness. Be afraid.