Candy making is a delicious and rewarding hobby. Whether you are making luscious caramels, tender brittles, divinity, lollipops, caramel corn, toffees, truffles or fudges, you can make professional-quality candies using normal kitchen equipment and utensils!
Experienced candy makers will tell you that candy making is both a science and an art. One of the most important tools in candy making is a good quality thermometer, but you also need to carefully observe the candy at all times to check for doneness. Using both tools and keen observation and experience will help ensure that your candy turns out great batch after batch. Remember, even the most experienced candy makers have a batch that “flops”; but while the candy may not look picture-perfect it almost always tastes delicious anyway. Some old tales will tell you not to make candy when it rains. This isn’t precisely true, but changes in temperature, humidity, and air pressure may change the cooking conditions.
A Word To The Beginner Candy maker
The idea that candy making is difficult is prevalent among housewives, and the object of this website is to remove that erroneous impression and to teach the housewife how to make candies equal in appearance to the confectioner’s candies, and as good as the best and most wholesome ingredients will be produced.
With this book as a guide, if instructions and recipes are followed, even a child can master the art of candy making, and not one recipe in the book is too difficult for the beginner to attempt. In dipping bon-bons and chocolates it will require a little practice to acquire speed and to make uniform designs, ut one’s success at the very beginning is always surprising. Not every woman will have the tools most practical for candy making, but by the expenditure of a few dollars these can be secured, and the profits saved on candies will soon more than cover the cost.
Making fine candy is one of the most interesting parts of the culinary art, and when a woman once begins making candies she will buy but little, for the home product is usually much superior to the commercial candies. To make ten pounds of candy, for which one ordinarily pays from forty to fifty cents per pound, is not more than one hour’s work, and one is always certain of the cleanliness and wholesomeness of the product.
Children have a natural craving for sugar, which should be satisfied to a normal degree, but all factory candies containing deleterious ingredients should be guarded against. Many children have been made sick by unwholesome candy. Candy should be placed on the table and eaten at the end of the meal; to allow children to indulge in it every hour of the day is not conducive to good digestion. This book gives recipes for a large variety of candies, and with a little study and practice, every one of them can be easily made. If on any occasion a failure should occur, remember that only the work is lost. The sugar can be re-boiled and converted into a delicious fudge.
We have tried to go into every detail, and if the instructions are given close study – the reason for which we assume this book was purchased – making candies will be a pleasure.
Tired of your candy not turning out right but not knowing why?
I was too. That’s why I decided to make this site. I found that when I had a question about candy making there weren’t too many places where I could post my questions and get some answers.
In the different sections of this Web site, I will be sharing tips and tricks I’ve learned along the way. Check out the newly added 9-minute YouTube video on how to cook fudge the old fashioned way on our fudge page.
My hope is the Forums will become the most active part of this site and you, the many visitors, will become regular participants. Let’s post our questions, recipes, and tips and share our knowledge so we all can become better candy makers!
Thermometers aren’t always 100-percent accurate, so when determining whether or not my candy is done, I use them as a guideline – not an absolute test of readiness.
To find out which stage candy is in, use the ice water test. Take a glass of ice water and pour the ice-cold water into a small bowl or ramekin – making sure not to get any ice in it. Take a spoonful of your candy and drip it into the cold water. You can then determine which stage your candy has reached. (Some candy makers also recognize a firm-ball stage, but I stick to four stages for my tests because that’s what most candy thermometer mark.)
- Soft ball stage – When the candy forms a ball in the water and will flatten out by the heat of your hands when taken out of the water.
- Hard ball stage – When the candy forms a ball in the water and still holds its shape out of the water, but can still be molded by your hand.
- Soft crack stage – When the candy separates in the water to form threads. The threads are hard but not brittle.
- Hard crack stage – When the candy separates into hard, brittle threads.
General Instructions to Make Candy
Use granulated sugar unless otherwise directed.
The recipes may be increased or decreased, as desired, but the syrup must always be boiled to the degree directed. Carelessness in this respect is sure to cause failures. One of the most important features in making good quality, uniform candies is the boiling of the syrup to exactly the right degree.
We will give both rules for testing, but we strongly advise the use of the candy thermometer. What one saves when making a few pounds of good candy over what the same quality candy would cost in a confectionary store will pay for a good thermometer, and then one has it for the remainder of life, barring accidents.