Aplets & Cotlets are a candy strongly associated with Washington State, where they were originally invented as a way to use up surplus apples. They can be found all around in tourist retail areas but the best place to go for Aplets & Cotlets is the Aplets & Cotlets Country Store. The Country Store, in Cashmere, Washington (close to Leavenworth) is attached to the factory where the candies are made.
These candies resemble Turkish delight. From the manufacturer’s website:
“Our original product, Aplets, was based on a recipe for Locoum, the famous confection of the eastern Mediterranean. Locoum is most associated with Turkey, where it is often called Rahat Locoum. When the British were active in Turkey many years ago, they developed a taste for Locoum, but changed the name to “Turkish Delight” to make it more marketable back in England. Locoum is popular throughout the eastern Mediterranean, and goes by many similar names… Loukoumi, Lokum, Halcoum, and so on. Liberty Orchards products are similar to traditional locoums, but they’ve evolved along a different path to appeal to the American market. Traditional locoums are often made with exotic flavorings like oil of rose, orange blossom oil, and bergamot and nuts from that part of the world, especially walnuts and pistachios. Our products are made with the fruits and nuts that are grown in the Americas, including berries, tropical fruits, pecans and macadamias, along with the traditional nuts like walnuts.”
They are not for everyone. They are extremely sweet – eating these is like eating a block of syrup with some chunks of nuts. I don’t think the apple or apricot flavors in Aplets & Cotlets (hence the name) come through clearly. The Country Store has free samples so you can decide if you like them yourself.
I really like the company’s Orchard Bars, which are nut/seed/dried fruit energy bars. The fruit flavors are lovely in these, which are available to sample as well.
There is more traditional Turkish delight for sale, as well as lots of different types of candy, seasonings, savory snacks, and other gift items. There are often discounted Aplets & Cotlets products available.
When I was there, the factory was not doing production so there was no factory tour. However, a video of the production process was playing in the back, on a wall with several historic photos of the company; Aplets have been made since 1918!
There used to be so many workers in the factory, seen in the large photo below:
I took some photos of the factory machinery through the doors.
The last time I was in a candy production space was when I made my own chocolate bars in Raaka Chocolate’s chocolate class in New York. Wish I could’ve seen this factory in action!
Aplets & Cotlets Country Store
117 Mission Ave, Cashmere, WA 98815