Ah the humble mint. As we know there are lots of different varieties to choose from, ranging from Mint imperials to Fox's Glacier mints, all with their own level of uniqueness. One such minty sweet is Bassets Murray mints. The thing I like about any hard boiled sweet is the fact that you can make them last for ages and Murray mints are one such sweet that I have taken to keeping in my desk drawer at work, if I find myself craving a snack of some sort. I find that sucking on a mint really helps me to concentrate, and it helps me to avoid snacking on things such as crisps and other highly calorific items.
***Murray mints - A history***
The history of the Murray mint is something of a mystery with the first recording of this particular sweet in the confectionary market in 1944. Having changed hands over the years, the history has been lost a little along the way. In 1965 Basset's acquired a company called Pascall Murray and hence acquired the Murray mint brand along with it. It wasn't until 1989, that Cadbury acquired the Trebor Basset's brand and created a UK Confectionary subsidiary known as Cadbury Trebor Basset. Murray mints are today branded as Basset's Murray mints but were previously branded as Trebor Murray mints.
***What are Murray Mints?***
The Murray mint reminds me somewhat of a minty version of Werther's originals. Essentially what makes the Murray mint different from most of your traditional mint sweets out there is the creamy buttery taste you get combined with the mintiness, which is essentially what makes me think of Werther's originals. They are a hard boiled sweet manufactured to be enjoyed slowly, although I know some people who are crunchers...crunching these surely can't be any good for your teeth. These are individually wrapped sweets to be enjoyed one at a time.
Opening the wrapper which is a traditional sweet wrapper to reveal the small oblong sweet with the very obvious Murray name stamped into the middle, there is no obvious minty aroma, in fact there is not much of an aroma at all. Holding the sweet up to my nose, I can only smell what can only be described as sweet butter, however popping the sweet into my mouth I am instantly met with a smooth creamy sweet that oozes minty butteriness. These are by no means mints that would be used to freshen your breath, as is the appeal of so many other mints out there but instead are to be savoured and enjoyed to the max allowing the mint to slowly dissolve in your mouth the flavour is very pleasant indeed, only when you get to the very end should you be tempted to crunch. There are no soft centres or chewy parts to this sweet, it is hard boiled through and through so be careful and mindful of your teeth if you are a cruncher.
As ridiculous as it may seem, I actually sat and timed how long it took me to get down to the bare bones of this particular sweet, and the calculated time was approximately 15 minutes which is a long time to have your taste buds continuously stimulated with the same flavour. Purchased in January 2011, these sweets have a shelf life of around 5 months.
Approximately 4 Murray mints will cost you around 90 calories, but it will also get you a good solid hour of pure creamy, buttery, minty pleasure.
They are high in sugar, with 4 sweets containing 15.2% of your GDA, 1.7% of fat and 3% of saturated fat along with 1.3% of salt.
I purchased my Murray mints from my local Asda and a 200g bag of individually wrapped sweets cost me a pound and if my calculations are correct, you get around 30 sweets in a packet for your pennies, which I think is really good value for money given the 15 minute sucking time....that's 7and a half hours worth of sweeties, so a whole days work worth, although I wouldn't even eat a whole packet in one day. I find that I can make a packet of these mints last me for a couple of weeks before needing to restock.
Unless I'm mistaken, unless you want to go rooting through websites online, you can currently only buy Murray mints in the 200g bag from your local supermarket, but if you're looking for alternatives, you can get them in 2kg jars from various online retailers as well as being able to buy a case of rolls.