Saturday, March 24, 2012

Sahlman Pehmeä Toffee (Salmiakki Flavor)

Despite being intelligent, sentient beings, our instincts still tell us a lot. Things we find that are dark brown and squishy – as an example – are probably best left alone. Today I once again ignored my instincts and opened up a Sahlman bar.

IMG_0767 IMG_0769

The texture, consistency, and color reminded me of something I see nearly every day. It’s used to patch asphalt road cracks, seam roof shingles, and occasionally as an adhesive to apply feathers. Of course, we're not use to seeing it in this pure, bar form... so a took a picture of what a sahlman bar looks like in nature, after someone leaves it outside to melt in the hot sun:


I haven’t eaten tar before, but I'll try everything at least once.

The Sahlman bar had a sweet smell to it, much like the toffee it claims to be. When I first bit into it, it had a sweet, caramely taste. The texture was very soft... even gummy. There was a subtle liquorice taste, but it didn't seem so bad. At least, at first.

Then the unmistakable salty liquorice came out of nowhere. It was powerful, and must have been activated by a mix of chewing and saliva. I tried, but I couldn't do it -- I spit out the mouthful of yuck and took a quick swig of water.

It didn't help all that much as the flavor stuck with me quite a bit. While this Sahlman Toffee is clearly inedible, at least I have something to patch my roof should there be any leaks.


  1. Ok, now the time has finally come to try the Terva Leijona tar-flavoured candy. You did get a pack of those, right? (I'd be surprised if they forgot those) If you did I hope it was the classic ones that make you smell like an old wooden boat.

  2. I'll write tervaleijona down in my TODO list should Alex forget the updates for a few months again :)

  3. Your blog causes severe salmiac cravings.

  4. The round box with "pre-molded" hard candies, try it next! And take a video!

  5. Hey, you lucky bastard! Sahlman stuff is somewhat hard to find even here in Finland unless you live in a major city. I only have one bar left in my cupboard at the moment :(

  6. Yes, this Sahlman bar is one of my absolute favorites, whenever there's a trade show in Helsinki convention center, there are usually some stands that stock this as a snack, and I quite often end up buying one or several. Delicious!

  7. My coworker told me as a kids she and her friends would pull up pieces of the tar off the road and chew on it like gum. There is no limit to what people will put in their mouths. I have not tried it.

  8. Minor piece of advice: If you ever get around to trying that Synkkä Salmiakki (the candies in the transparent plastic container that reminded you of Turkish Peppers) included in the "gift" package seen in the video in your previous blog update, you really should use video camera to record your (and possibly your friends'/co-workers'/mother-in-law's) reactions. Two words: CHILI EXTRACT

    1. Aww, now you spoiled the surprise. But yes, that one absolutely deserves a video!