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    Score: 4.60. Votes: 15

    In 1992 Fortune magazine estimated the Mars family's personal worth at somewhere around $12.5 billion. This solid foundation of wealth, built on the country's undying passion for chocolate and other sweets, has made this clan the richest family in America—and the most reclusive. A family rule prohibits photographs to be taken of the Mars family and corporate executives. According to Fortune, a photographer who once tried to get a shot of Forrest Mars, Sr., found himself enveloped in a cloth that was thrown as he was about to snap the picture. 

    The empire started in 1902, when nineteen-year-old Franklin C. Mars began selling homemade candy. In 1910 he started a wholesale candy business in Tacoma, Washington. Ten years later Frank moved to Minneapolis, where he used the family kitchen to make buttercreams, which were personally delivered to retailers in the city by his wife, Ethel. Business grew steadily, and in 1940 Frank's son Forrest established M&M Limited in Newark, New Jersey. 

    By 1967 the family's confectionery business in the United States had been consolidated into M&M/Mars. The fortune grew steadily larger as the corporation routinely kept four brands in the top-ten-selling chocolates in the country: Milky Way, M&M's Plain and Peanut, and, in the number-one spot, Snickers.

    Source: Top Secret Recipes by Todd Wilbur.

    For a live demonstration of this classic clone recipe, check out this video.

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    Score: 5.00. Votes: 2

    Founded in 1914 by Harry Brown and J.C. Haley in Tacoma, Washington, the Brown and Haley Candy Company is one of the oldest confectioners in the country. In 1923 the company hit the jackpot when Harry Brown and the former cook from what would eventually become the M&M/Mars candy company, created a chocolate-coated butter toffee candy, sprinkled with California almonds. They took the sweet to Tacoma's head librarian, and she named it Almond Roca—roca means "rock" in Spanish. In 1927 the two men decided to wrap the little candies in imported gold foil and pack them into the now-familiar pink cans to extend their shelf life threefold. In fact, because of the way the candy was packaged, it was carried by troops in World War II, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, and the Gulf War.

    The Brown and Haley candy company is still housed in the former shoe factory that it has occupied since 1919. Almond Roca is so popular today that it can be found in sixty-four countries and is a market leader in Hong Kong, Singapore, Korea, Taiwan, the Philippines, and Japan. The company sells more that 5 million pounds of Almond Roca each year and is the United States leading exporter of packaged confections. 

    Source: Top Secret Recipes by Todd Wilbur.

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    The process by which M&M/Mars and other candy companies smoothly chocolate-coat their confections is called enrobing. Enrobing was created in 1900 to protect the interiors of the bars from drying out. The process begins when the uncoated centers pass through a curtain of liquid chocolate on a continuous stainless-steel belt. The top and sides of each bar are coated with a thin layer of chocolate. The process is repeated a second time, and then the fully coated bar is quickly cooled and wrapped.

    Enrobing is the least expensive way for manufacturers to coat their chocolates. At M&M/Mars, the enrobing machines run around the clock to meet the high demand for their products. Unfortunately, traditional kitchen appliances don't include among them an enrobing machine, so in our case, dipping will have to suffice.

    The caramel Twix was introduced in 1977, and peanut butter Twix came along in 1982. 

    Source: Top Secret Recipes by Todd Wilbur.

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    Score: 5.00. Votes: 1

    At one point Mars, Inc. chose to capitalize on the companys best-selling candy bar, and called this one Snickers Munch Bar. I think that may have been confusing to consumers who expected to open the wrapper and find something inside resembling a Snickers bar. Other than the abundance of peanuts in this butter toffee brittle, this candy bar is nothing like Snickers. It is, however, an awesome peanut brittle that's super-easy to clone. The original is made with only six ingredients: peanuts, sugar, butter, corn syrup, salt, and soy lecithin. The soy lecithin is an emulsifier used here for texture, but this ingredient is hard to find, and we really don't need it for a good clone. Use a candy thermometer to bring the mixture of sugar, butter, and corn syrup up to 300 degrees F, then stir in warmed, salted peanuts. When the candy has cooled, break it into chunks and you will have created the equivalent of 12 bars of the addicting original. 

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    Score: 3.00. Votes: 2

    At the train station in Naugatuck, Connecticut, candy and ice-cream shop owner Peter Paul Halajian used to meet the commuter trains carrying baskets full of fresh hand-made chocolates. The most popular of his candies was a blend of coconut, fruits, nuts, and chocolate that he called Konabar.

    In 1919, when demand for his confections grew, Halajian and five associates, all of Armenian heritage, opened a business in New Haven to produce and sell his chocolates on a larger scale. Because there were no refrigerators, they made the chocolate by hand at night, when the air was the coolest, and sold the candy during the day. In 1920 the first Mounds bar was introduced.

    Peter Paul merged with Cadbury U.S.A. in 1978, and in 1986 Cadbury U.S.A. merged with the Hershey Foods Corporation, now the world's largest candy conglomerate.

    Today the recipes for Mounds and Almond Joy are the same as they were in the roaring twenties.

    Source: Top Secret Recipes by Todd Wilbur.

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    The first See's Candy shop was opened in Los Angeles in 1921 by Charles A. See. He used his mother's candy recipes, and a picture of her at the age of seventy-one embellished every black-and-white box of chocolates. Mary See died in 1939 at the age of eighty-five, but her picture went on to become a symbol of quality and continuity. See's manufacturing plants are still located in California, but because the company will ship anywhere in the United States, See's has become a known and respected old-fashioned-style chocolatier all across the country.

    In an age of automation, many companies that manufacture chocolate have resorted to automated enrobing machines to coat their chocolates. But See's workers still hand-dip much of their candy. 

    One of the company's most popular sweets isn't dipped at all. It's a hard, rectangular lollipop that comes in chocolate, peanut butter and butterscotch flavors. The latter, which tastes like caramel, is the most popular flavor of the three, and this recipe will enable you to clone the original, invented more than fifty years ago.

    You will need twelve shot glasses, espresso cups, or sake cups for molds, and twelve lollipop sticks or popsicle sticks.

    Source: Top Secret Recipes by Todd Wilbur.

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    What started in Tacoma, Washington, in 1911 as a small home-based candy shop has now grown to be one of the largest privately held companies in the world. Mars products are found in more than 100 countries, and the Mars family pulls in revenues in the range of a sweet $11 billion each year.

    The Mars Almond Bar was first produced in 1936, when it was known as the Mars Toasted Almond Bar. It was reformulated in 1980 and the name was changed to Mars Bar. In 1990 it was renamed once again, becoming Mars Almond Bar.

    You'll need a heavy-duty mixer to handle the nougat in this recipe.

    Source: More Top Secret Recipes by Todd Wilbur.

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    Some are confused by the brand name M&M/Mars. The company is a snack division within the parent company Mars, Incorporated, which produces food products around the world as diverse and Uncle Ben's Rice and Kal Kan dog food. When the founder's son, Forrest E. Mars, Sr., returned from England where he had established the first canned pet food business in that country, he formed a company in Newark, New Jersey, to make small chocolate candies that could be sold throughout the year and not melt in the summer months. Those were the first M&Ms. The company, called M&M Limited, consolidated with the other Mars confectionery businesses in the United States in 1967 to form M&M/Mars as it exists today.

    The Mars Milky Way bar was the first chocolate-covered candy bar to find widespread popularity in the United States. It was developed in 1923 by the Mars family, and became so successful so quickly that the company had to build a new manufacturing plant in Chicago just to keep up with demand.

    Youll need a heavy-duty mixer for this recipe.

    Source: More Top Secret Recipes by Todd Wilbur.

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    Score: 5.00. Votes: 1

    Nougat is an important ingredient in the 3 Musketeers Bar, as well as in many other candy bars created by M&M/Mars. Nougat is made by mixing a hot sugar syrup with whipped egg whites until the solution cools and stiffens, creating a frappe. Other ingredients may be added to the nougat during this process to give it different flavors. In this recipe, you'll add chocolate chips to create a dark, chocolaty nougat.

    But the 3 Musketeers Bar wasn't always filled with just a chocolate nougat. In fact, when the candy bar was created back in 1932, it was actually three pieces with three flavors: vanilla, strawberry, and chocolate. After World War II, the product was changed to a single chocolate bar because that was the favorite flavor, and customers wanted more of it. Thankfully they didn't change the name to 1 Musketeer.

    You'll need a heavy-duty electric mixer for this recipe.

    Source: More Top Secret Recipes by Todd Wilbur.

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    Score: 5.00. Votes: 1

    In 1867, infant mortality rates in Vevey, Switzerland, had been climbing and Henri Nestle was working hard on a concoction of concentrated milk, sugar, and cereal for babies who were refusing their mother's milk. Eventually he discovered a formula that helped infants stay strong and healthy. He called his new product Farine Lactee and merged with two American brothers, Charles and George Page, who came to Switzerland to capitalize on Swiss canned milk technology. Their new company was called Nestle and Anglo-Swiss Condensed Milk Company, and quickly expanded into fifteen other countries. Seven years later, Nestle sold the company to three local businessmen for one million francs.

    The new company kept the Nestle name and started selling chocolate in 1904. In 1929, the company acquired Cailler, the first company to mass-produce chocolate bars, and Swiss General, the company credited with inventing milk chocolate. This company was the core of the chocolate business as we know it today. The Nestle Crunch bar was introduced in 1928 and is now the company's top-selling candy bar.

    Source: More Top Secret Recipes by Todd Wilbur.

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