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Jelly bean

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Jelly beans or jelly eggs are a type of confectionery that comes in many different (primarily fruit) flavours. They are small (the size of a kidney bean or smaller) and usually have a harder shell and gummy interior. The confection is primarily made of sugar.


The interior jelly traces its origin back thousands of years to a candy called Turkish Delight while the shell is essentially the same as developed in the late 17th century for Jordan Almond candies. The two were brought together around the beginning of the American Civil War. It was not until 1930 or so that jelly beans became an Easter candy, presumably from their resemblance to eggs.


Most jelly beans are sold as an assortment of about eight more or less standard fruit flavours. Assortments of 'spiced' jellybeans and gumdrops are also available, which include a similar number of spice and mint flavours. The colours of jelly beans are also more or less standardized, and include red for cherry, orange for orange, yellow for lemon, green for lime, violet for grape, black for anise, white for vanilla, and pink for rose.

On the other hand, some premium brands are available in dozens of different flavours, including berry, tropical fruit, soft drink, and novelty ranges in addition to the familiar fruit and spice flavors. While these are also sold as assortments, individual flavours can be purchased à la carte.