Thursday, March 31, 2016

J@H - Tootsie Roll Pops

I have been putting off this recipe for long enough. I knew how to make all of the components, it was just getting up the nerve to put them all together! Now that I've made these bad boys, I am so upset with myself for procrastinating!

With no further delay, please enjoy...


That's right. Tootsie roll pops! Chocolate taffy shrouded in a thick coating of hard candy. Did you ever think that you could make these at home?

I'm not going to say that this is the easiest thing to make at home. You definitely need to block some time and set aside any fear you have of boiling sugar. This is actually two recipes that need to be combined into one - chocolate taffy and grape hard candy. You can get fancy and buy a lollipop mold, but I decided to go a little more free form with my candies. That is why they are flat on one side.

The candy to taffy ratio is a little different with my lollipops - there is a lot more taffy in these than in a store-bought Tootsie pop. I recommend using high quality baker's chocolate and highly concentrated candy oil. With those two ingredients you will get the most richly flavored candies possible. 

How do these compare to the originals? Personally, I think they're way better. Give them a try! With all of the flavor possibilities of taffy and hard candy, I'm thinking of making a summertime version of these - Cherry lollipops with vanilla taffy anyone?

Four Years Ago: Cookie Dough Fudge
Five Years Ago:  Cookie Dough Eggrolls





Chocolate Taffy

1 cup sugar
1 1/4 cup light corn syrup
1/4 cup water
3/4 cup sweetened condensed milk
1/2 tsp salt
6 oz (2/3 cup) melted unsweetened chocolate
1 tsp vanilla extract.
Wax paper cut into 2-inch squares

Spray a cookie sheet with cooking spray or line with a silpat.

In a medium pot, combine sugar, corn syrup, water and condensed milk.  Bring to a boil and stir continuously, with a heatproof spatula, until you reach a temperature of 242 F.
  
Remove pot from the heat and stir in chocolate, salt and vanilla extract.  Stir to combine then pour out onto prepared pan.  Allow the candy to cool for 45 minutes to an hour.  It will be just about at room temperature.

Begin stretching the candy.  Stretch it long, fold in half, stretch fold stretch fold stretch fold...  You get the idea.  Once you have pulled for 10 minutes, the taffy should be a little lighter in color.  Using your kitchen scale, weigh out twelve, 12-16 gram pieces of taffy and roll them into balls. If you don’t have a scale, you want them about the diameter of a US quarter. Set aside while they cool completely. Re-roll if they lose their round shape.



With the remaining candy, divide it in half and roll out into a rope.  Cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces and wrap in wax paper.  Allow to sit overnight for the best texture.

Grape Hard Candy

1 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup light corn syrup
2 tablespoons water
Purple food coloring (paste works best)
1/4 teaspoon grape candy oil (I used this)
12 lollipop sticks

Prepare a bowl of ice water, large enough to set a 2-quart saucepan inside, and place next to the stove.

Combine sugar, corn syrup and water in a 2-quart saucepan. Stir and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Cover the saucepan with a lid and let boil for 4 minutes (this will wash any sugar crystals from the sides of the pan). Remove lid and clip on a candy thermometer.

Do not leave the stove during that part and do not stir the sugar syrup. Allow the sugar syrup to boil until it reaches 310 F. Quickly remove the pan from the stove and set it in the prepared bowl of ice water. Allow the pan to cool in the ice water for 20 seconds.

Remove pan from the ice water and let stand for 5 minutes. Add food coloring and candy flavoring and stir until candy is all one color.  Keep candy warm by placing the pot over a low flame.

Place a sheet of parchment or a silpat on the counter. Get your chocolate taffy balls and place them on the silpat. Dip the end of a lollipop stick into the grape hard candy and poke it into the center of the taffy ball. Let cool on the silpat. Continue with the remaining taffy balls.  You can place the suckers int he freezer for 20 minutes to solidify the candy.

Remove candy from the freezer. Dip each taffy ball in the  grape candy syrup. Gently shake off excess grape syrup. Place the lollipop on the silpat to cool and harden. Repeat with the remaining taffy balls.

If you have any extra grape candy syrup you can pour circles of candy onto the silpat. Place a lollipop stick in the circle. Roll the stick over in order to coat it completely in candy syrup. Let cool and harden.

(NOTE: I didn't freeze my taffy balls before dipping them in the candy syrup. This caused the taffy to soften and the lollipop stick flopped over. They were still delicious, just a little less pretty!)


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