Sometimes I think the only non-vegan foods I miss are junk-food items - Twinkies, Hostess cupcakes. And Whoppers malted milk balls. I've wanted to try my hand at something malted-milk-ball like for a while. I have a bunch of malt - annoying hygroscopic stuff that it is. I've looked online, to little avail, for homemade candy recipes. I think the real ones are made in a vacuum somehow.
But I did discover some candies - Honeycomb, Sponge, Cinder Toffee - all names for similar candies that are like puffier, airer versions of nut brittle. And often coated with chocolate.
So a while back, I tried my hand at one ... I've made brittle successfully before, but this cinder toffee was a total disaster - brunt, sticky, gross stuff that never set up. I couldn't figure out what in the world went wrong.
Well, tonight, I figured it out ... I had decided to try a small batch recipe again and I got out my thermometer, plugged in the thermocouple and it reported it was 86 degrees in here! I used it to take my temperature, it read 112. Then I realized - I was using the "bad" thermometer and our free replacement was packed away somewhere. After a brief search, we found it and its readings were good. So, last time, I'd used the bad thermometer - no wonder.
As expected, with a candy thermometer that works, my agave-comb candy turned out much better! I'll be experimenting with the recipes which call for vinegar next, and then hoping to use some malt sugar and coat in chocolate.Ingredients:
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 2 tbsp water
- 2 tbsp agave nectar
- 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
- a working candy thermometer!
- Level out sugar into the bottom of a 2 quart sauce pan, fitted with your thermometer probe.
- Add water and agave nectar
- Sift baking soda and prepare a place for your candy. I used a silpat mat on a cookie sheet.
- Cook candy without stirring to 300 degrees
- Quickly remove thermometer and add baking soda, stirring with a wooden spoon to mix in soda. Be careful, it puffs up fast!
- Pour foaming candy onto the area you prepared for it and allow it to cool undisturbed.
- Once cool, break into pieces and store in an airtight container.