Thursday, April 21, 2011

Homemade Gel Candy

Perfect for the Easter table! A very nice traditional replacement for jelly beans, originally known as "Turkish delight".

24 parchment paper muffin liners
muffin tin(s)
olive oil
Stage One
1-1/2 cups water
4 cups pure cane sugar
1 tablespoon 100% pure organic lemon juice
Stage Two
½ cup potato starch, or arrowroot starch, or tapioca starch
½ cup tapioca starch, or arrowroot starch, or potato starch
3 cups water
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
Stage Three
1 cup powdered sugar
¼ cup tapioca starch, or arrowroot starch, or potato starch
  1. Set a medium saucepan over medium heat; add water, cane sugar, and lemon juice; stir to dissolve sugar completely; bring mixture to a boil; reduce to a simmer; cook until temperature on candy thermometer reads 240 degrees F (soft-stage); stir occasionally; once proper temp is reached, remove pan from heat.
  2. In an airtight container, combine starch(es) and cream of tartar; place on lid; shake vigorously to combine; set aside.
  3. Place large saucepan over medium heat; combine water and dry mixture; whisk vigorously to combine completely; bring mixture to a boil; drop to a simmer; cook about 5 minutes, or until texture is thick like glue – whisk constantly to prevent large clumps of starch from forming.
  4. Beat starch mixture until completely smooth; add prepared syrup from Stage One; beat to combine; place saucepan over medium heat; bring to a boil, stirring constantly; beat in flavor of choice; drop heat to a simmer; cook 1 hour at a simmer, stirring frequently.
  5. Meanwhile, using pure olive oil, lightly coat each muffin well; place parchment liners into oiled wells; add a drop of oil to each liner, spread to coat evenly; set aside tin aside.
  6. Once mixture has cooked for one hour, remove pan from heat and beat vigorously. Using a ¼-cup metal measuring cup, fill each prepared well with the hot candy gel.
  7. Cover filled muffin tin with plastic wrap; place in safe place to cool, preferably overnight.
  8. In airtight container, combine powdered sugar and tapioca starch; place on lid; shake vigorously to combine.
  9. Remove a cooled gel from its muffin liner; place gel into powdered sugar mix; place on lid and shake gently to coat gel evenly; remove to cutting board; slice into desired sizes; place pieces into powdered sugar mix; place on lid and shake gently to coat each piece evenly; remove to airtight storage container, in flat rows separated by parchment paper; may refrigerate to store for a firmer candy.
Clockwise from top: gel candy once set;
gel candy coated in powdered sugar and vegetable-dye sugar;
gel candy coated with plain powdered sugar.
Servings: 24 standard muffin-size gels; once cut to size (12 pieces per large gel) 288 pieces
Preheat: none
Prep Time: 2 hours, plus 12 hours for cooling

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