Looking for a slightly unusual addition to your array of holiday treats this year? Try making lollipops! Apparently, they're not as hard as they sound (no pun intended)...
This is an we picked up from Christine Moore of Little Flower Candy Company during her interview on this past week's episode of Good Food. If you're not fussy about getting that perfect lollipop shape, she says you can make them just using a well-oiled mini muffin tin as a mold. You can find lollipop sticks at just about any craft store like Michael's or JoAnna's.
The lollipops themselves are a simple mixture of 2 cups of sugar, 2/3 cup of corn syrup, and 1/2 cup of water. Bring this to a boil over medium-high heat and cook until the mixture reaches hard crack and registers 300° on a candy thermometer. Check out our tips on working with sugar for this part of the process.
To this basic lollipop solution, you can add a teaspoon of flavoring. Moore suggests holiday flavors like peppermint, cinnamon, or citrus. Add it in right when the mixture reaches hard crack.
If you want to get even more creative, you can put a holiday candy in the middle of the mold before pouring in the sugar mixture. The candy will end up suspended in the middle of the lollipop, adding both visual appeal and incentive to keep licking!
This sounds like a winning idea to us. We can't wait to give it a try! Have any of you made lollipops before?
•To hear the full story and get the original recipe, visit the Good Food website.
Related: Food Science: How Sugar "Cooks"
(Image: Flickr member anaulin licensed under Creative Commons)