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Baking with Elsa by: Caroline Westbrook

banana and chocolate pastry bite
banana and chocolate pastry bite

The Elsa's Story range of biscuits and other snacks oozes class. This Israeli company based in the resort town of Nahariya has distanced itself from other manufacturers by creating upscale gourmet products.

One of its latest creations is Pastry Bites. Similar to cookies, only softer and chewier, they come in six different varieties, and I had the opportunity to sample the banana and chocolate flavour.

The first thing you notice when you bite into them is how sweet they are and then the taste of the banana hits you. Another bite, and it's chocolate chips mixing with the banana that you notice as well as the surprise of raisins (which you didn't know you were getting).

But even though they're very sweet, they're not sickly, as banana flavoured products can sometimes be. The balance of banana, chocolate and raisin is perfect, and these are a real treat. They're not cheap around 2 for a box of approximately 12-15 but they taste genuinely homemade. And the presentation is also good the pastry bites, for example, come in a smart white box. And that's how Elsa's differs from the competition.

They also have a wide range of other fayre, from cookies through to pies, Danish pastries, preserves and even a selection of sugar-free Products. This Israeli company certainly knows how to bake good food. Whether or not there really was an Elsa remains in question but whether there was or there wasn't, it's certainly a clever bit of marketing.

The homeliness of the whole thing leaves you with a nice warm glow, and you feel as though you're connected with Elsa in some way, though of course it does seem odd to envisage this Elsa character she is described as always baking, and there are mock photos of her with her family, but we're given no indication which country she's from or how she ended up having cookies and snacks made in Israel. Whoever Elsa is, one thing's for certain this are premium products that no cupboard should be without.

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