Saturday, April 10, 2010


I like candy. A lot. I want to make my own candies and delicious things. There's many reasons for this, one is that it's typically a bit cheaper though it can be time intensive, and I'm much more interested in homemade than not anytime, and two is that high fructose corn syrup, additives, and preservatives are not very good for you. Recent studies have shown that high fructose corn syrup contributes to weight gain (possibly due to the unnatural format, confusing your body instead of just sweetening your food) and unnatural things just aren't typically that good for you anyway. Changing the format of fat and calories entering your body changes how your body processes them. Basically, if your candy, desserts, and sweets are homemade with good ingredients, you don't have to worry as much about intake. Of course, you can't have cake for every meal, but you don't have to skip dessert.

Recently, I finally mastered fondant. Okay, so, maybe not mastered, but I have fondant. I'm still learning how to quickly and easily make the perfect fondant, I'm not there yet. Seems to me that you can't let it cool all the way or else it takes almost an hour of creaming it to work, and you should get it as hot as possible without going into the hard ball stage, so as close to 242 F without going over as possible. I also learned that some of my early candy making and attempts at fondant didn't work because my candy thermometer is about 10 degrees Celsius off. Not even close.

Fondant, yay!

With fondant, you can do quite a few things, and homemade fondant tastes really, really good. Like, really. You can also add flavors and colors, though I can only find powdered food coloring here and I don't like it. It can be used in oh-so-many ways, too. I decorated a cake, but didn't take a picture before transporting it, and it managed to get squashed in transport. I also made chocolate covered fondant candies. These are delicious.

I added almond and vanilla to one lump of fondant, and some grated orange zest to the other. The really cool thing about the grated orange zest is that it also gives the fondant a bit of color, which I like. After mixing in the flavorings, I rolled the fondant into a log and cut off slices to coat with chocolate. This does take a lot of powdered sugar to coat the surface and your hands with, so the fondant doesn't stick to everything. I saved the leftover powdered sugar in the fridge with so I could use it next time I was going to use the fondant. That stuff is expensive! The goal was round candies, but the fondant flattened out a bit as I cut it, so they ended up being more rectangular. They were amazingly delicious! I dipped the fondant into milk and dark chocolate, since I keep a supply of both in the cupboard.*

The other nice thing about fondant is that it will keep in the fridge indefinitely, or so sources say. This means that I can make fondant every so often, and keep the leftovers in the fridge, and when I have an event it would be good to bring something to, mix in some flavors and/or colors, dip in chocolate, and voila!, a quick, fancy-looking and delicious treat as a hostess gift, party favor, or quick addition to a potluck or work party. Excellent!

*I have never once raided that supply when I've had a chocolate craving. I have just realized this, so now, the chocolate is in danger. I am quite surprised that that chocolate has been safe for so long.

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