Bird’s Milk

Appears in

Oxford Companion to Sugar and Sweets

Oxford Companion to Sugar and Sweets

By Darra Goldstein

Published 2015

  • About

bird’s milk is the stuff of fantasy, and the name of this beloved Eastern European sweet reflects its mythical qualities and physical scarcity. The candies are indeed ethereal: small, chocolate-enrobed bars with a soft, marshmallow-like interior, colored white for vanilla or egg-yolk yellow for lemon. Bird’s milk candies were first produced in Poland by the famous E. Wedel company in the mid-1930s; in 2010 the company received a trademark for them from the European Union. From Poland the candy spread in popularity throughout Eastern Europe, especially Russia, where during the Soviet era of food deficits, obtaining a box of bird’s milk candies was considered a coup, nearly as unlikely as milking a bird.