Editor's note: Every weekday in October, the Serious Eats editors and staff will chat about a candy they loved as kids (or love today). Artificial colors encouraged, no organic chocolate allowed.
There's a Threadless shirt out there that says, "Stupid Raisins, Stay Out of My Cookies." I saw a guy wearing it once; it made me a little sad. The anti-raisin camp can be loud and hostile. Meanwhile us raisin supporters sit here in our armchairs on Friday nights eating shriveled-up grapes for fun. But you know, that's fine. More of the rejected wrinkly fruit for the rest of us!
I don't need chocolate as an incentive to eat more raisins, but it doesn't hurt. The sweet Raisinet chocolate shell enrobes each puny grape. It takes a couple chews before you even realize it's under there, adding another element of juicy sweet. So often with fancy chocolates you pick up on tasting notes (tart, smoky, fruity) except in this case, the fruit is literally in the chocolate to make life easier.
Raisinets are part of the poppable-by-the-handful classification of candy. But you somehow feel more virtuous eating them over M&Ms or Reese's Pieces thanks to the raisin-makes-things-healthier rule. While I hardly pay attention to the antioxidants pitch on the packaging, a little part of me does think, ohh really, 30% less fat than leading chocolate brands? That's at least five more bites at dinner.