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LOLLIPOPS (HARD CANDY)
Hard candies are high-boiled sweets that can be clear, pulled or grained, making for a variety of textures. They differ from other boiled sugar candy primarily in their low moisture content. Examples of hard candy are lollipops, lozenges, stick candy, rock candy and mints.
Lollipops can be one of the simplest of the boiled sugar treats. Sugar syrup, cooked to the hard crack stage -- 290 to 300 F (143 to 149C) -- is cooled slightly, flavour and colour are added, then the candy is poured out onto an oiled marble slab or other nonstick surface.
Overworking the batch while incorporating the flavour and colour may cause crystallization. A bit of glucose added to the syrup will inhibit crystallization, keeping the candy clear.
Hard candy is best made on a dry day where the humidity is low. Syrups taken to witcrack temperatures contain very little water, so they have a tendency to absorb moisture from the air and become sticky on a humid day. The candy should be wrapped in cello or packed airtight containers as soon as it cools.
Hard candies are more likely to be sticky if too much 'doctor' (corn syrup, invert sugar or cream of tartar) is used. The higher the temperature to which the candy is taken, the more the sugar inverts, and thus the less doctor that is required. Hence a soft-boiled sweet such as caramel uses more corn syrup than hard candy.
2 cups sugar اثنين كوب سكر
1 tbsp glucose (white corn syrup) ملعقة طعام كورن سيراب ابيض
2/3 cup water ثلثين كوب ماء
2 to 3 drops essential oil or flavouring (I used 2 drops of lavender oil)
Several drops water based food colouring ملون طعام
Place the sugar, glucose and water in a heavy 4-quart saucepan. Bring to a boil. Cover the pot with a lid for a minute or so to dissolve any sugar crystals as required.
Boil to 300 F (149 C). Place in pan of cool water to stop boiling. Stir in flavour and colour. Spoon out into small rounds on oiled marble, press a lollipop stick on each lollipop and add a bit more syrup on top of the stick.
Variation: Instead of water, you can use the juice from raspberries for the liquid. Start with 2 cups of raspberries. Heat the berries in a pan to the point where they release their juice, then place in sieve and let the juice drain (do not squeeze fruit). Use 2/3 cup juice and 2 cups of sugar (no corn syrup is required due to acidity of fruit). Boil to only 290 F (143 C). No flavour or colour required.
Ingredients: it is not necessary to use bottled water; tap water is fine. As I didn't have any lollipop
sticks I used bamboo chopsticks.
Marble slab prepared for hot sugar syrup with a thin coat of neutral oil.
Sugar, glucose and water measured into 4-quart pot.
Bring the sugar syrup to a boil and cook to between 290 and 300 F (143 and 149 C).
Have a pan of cool water ready to cool the syrup quickly.
When the syrup reaches temperature, place in cool water just to stop boiling.
Add a couple of drops of flavouring. Here I am using some lavender essential oil.
Add a couple of drops of colour. Keep the stirring to a minimum to prevent crystallization.
Quickly pour out small rounds of syrup onto the oiled marble.
Add the lollipop stick, pushing it in to the hot syrup.
Add a dab more syrup behind the stick.
Once cool, cover in cello to exclude moisture.