Thursday, October 27, 2011

Candy Corn

For the last 3 years we have been making our own candy corn. Conventional candy corn is often filled with chemical dyes, high fructose corn syrup, preservatives, and gelatin all things we avoid in our house. Although it is quite a process to make candy corn (the shaping and cutting is the longest part) it is well worth it. I must say it tastes so much better then store bought and it has the added bonus of not having any nasty chemicals.
Next year I think I am going to increase the honey and decrease the agave (which is really just a very processed sugar just like corn syrup). 

Candy Corn
2 1/3 cups powdered sugar
1/3 cup cornstarch
Pinch of salt

1/3 cup honey
1/3 cup agave nectar or corn syrup
1 tsp vanilla
5 tbs butter
1 cup sugar –the candy corn base will turn out the color of the sugar
Use white sugar for a real white base, turbinado sugar for a slightly off white base, and rapadura sugar for a brown base.

Natural food coloring

Sift together the powdered sugar, cornstarch, and salt. Set aside.
In a saucepan combine the agave, honey, vanilla, butter, and sugar. Bring to a boil over high heat, stirring constantly.
Reduce heat to medium and continue to boil for 5 min, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat.
Add the sugar/cornstarch mixture to the agave/honey mixture. Mix well until fully incorporated a whisk works well. 
Let sit for 20 minutes or until slightly warm and easy to handle.
Place the dough on a large sheet of wax paper or other nonstick surface.
Divide the dough into 3 equal pieces. Add food coloring to one section of dough at a time. Kneading the dough to work in the color until it is evenly distributed and the dough is smooth. Repeat with the other 2 pieces. If leaving a section white knead it until it is smooth but do not add any color.
Most Halloween candy corn is white, orange, and yellow but you can use any colors you like. 
Roll the dough into long ropes, dividing them as needed so the ropes are easy to handle.
Line up the dough with the other colors and gently squeeze them together to form a long rectangle.
Using a sharp knife cut the rectangle into triangles. The tips will alternate colors.
Smooth out the edges and dust or roll in cornstarch to make them a bit less sticky.
Lay them out in a single layer on a surface lightly dusted with cornstarch. If possible let them sit for 24 hours to dry out. Not many of mine ever make it this long! 

*The dough can be used to make any shape you want- Try making little orange pumpkins out of the dough or just break off little pieces and roll them in to a ball for a much quicker way to make little candies.

1 comment:

  1. Jen- when do you combine the powdered sugar mixture with boiled honey /agave mix? I think I missed a step. Thanks!