Edible Flower Lollipops
I love making homemade candy. It is fun to do and it is surprising how many nostalgic favourites you can easily recreate in your kitchen. If candy making is something you are interested in, definitely invest in a candy thermometer, which can be relatively inexpensive. You can purchase digital versions as well as the traditional glass. Another purchase that will really increase the quality of your treats are some silicone candy moulds. They come in every shape and size imaginable and range from gummies, to chocolates, hard candies, lollipop moulds, and more. I used exactly these moulds and they were fantastic. For these lollipops, I tried one batch with white grape juice (the golden coloured ones) and the other I added blackberry lemonade candy flavourings. I think the possibilities are endless for flavour combinations and I love how these lollipops look like stained-glass. They are a beautiful way to showcase and preserve edible flowers.
Fruit Juice Lollipops Yield: 18 x 3.5" lollipops 1 cup granulated sugar ¼ tsp cream of tartar ¼ cup light corn syrup
¼ cup fruit juice (or water if you want to use candy flavourings and keep the candy clear)
You can use lollipop moulds or a silpat baking sheet for forming the lollipops. Insert sticks into the molds or lay on the silpat before beginning making the candy, it will make the process go more smoothly. Combine all of the ingredients (except for the *optional add-ins) in a medium sized saucepan, stir well, and bring to a boil. Use a candy thermometer and bring the liquid to almost 300°F/hard-crack stage (the temperature will continue to rise slightly after removing from the heat). Once off the heat, add in any optional colourants and flavourings. Working quickly, pour the candy mixture into moulds or onto the silpat. Allow to cool and store in an airtight container.
Edible Flower Version If you want to use edible flowers, halve the recipe to start. Pour a first layer of the candy (half way up the moulds), and quickly press the edible flowers (these need to have been well dried prior) into the hot sugar, face down. Be careful! Lay the sticks on the back of the flowers. Make the next half of the candy mixture and pour over the flowers to seal them in place. The candy cools and hardens so quickly that it needs to be done in 2 stages, there wouldn’t be enough time to press the flowers in and still be able to pour the top half. The flowers need to be fully encased in order to properly preserve them.
Want to Learn More? Some of my favourite candy making cookbooks I own are:
"The Sweet Book of Candy Making (by Elizabeth LaBau)" There are lots of different flavour variations included within the different categories and there are plenty of step-by-step photos too. This book includes lots on toffee, fudge, and truffles. "Candy is Magic: Real Ingredients, Modern Recipes (by Jami Curl)" If you are only going to purchase and own one candy making cookbook, then I recommend this one. Not only does it have an extensive collection of recipes (for example, the lollipop section is laid out by flavour), but the photography is really eye-catching, and the flavour suggestions are very sophisticated. This book also includes chapters on ice cream making, caramels, marshmallows, and how to package/present your homemade candies. "The Liddabit Sweets Candy Cookbook: How to Make Truly Scrumptious Candy in Your Own Kitchen! (by Liz Gutman & Jen King)" This was one of the first books I bought on candy making. The layout is really cute, there are lots of step-by-step pictures, and they've got a very informative "Candy Making 101" section. "Making Artisan Chocolates (by Andrew Garisson Shotts)" I will say that chocolate and bon bon making are in an entirely separate candy making category, but if you are interested in learning more, then check out this book.