My general philosophy in allergen free baking is to start with a recipe close to what I want and modify it to be safe for my family. This time I started with “Water Fondant” in “Candymaking” by Ruth Kendrick & Pauline Atkinson. If you don’t have the limits we have you should consider getting the original recipe.
You’ll notice this recipe is titled Taffy but it started with a Fondant recipe. Once a chef taught me how to make chocolate souffle cake. He said to never tell people what it is before you are done. If it’s over cooked it’s an excellent chocolate cake. If it’s undercooked it’s an excellent chocolate pudding. I have found his advice applies to more then just fancy cake. In this case I either overcooked slightly or my recipe changes were to extreme. Either way it still produced some family approved candy.
Wild Orange Honey Taffy (Gluten, Corn, Soy, Egg, Dairy, Palm Free)
Combine in a large heavy bottom pan. (Our exact items are in quotes. Please use safe for you ingredients, especially with a corn allergy there are many different tolerance levels.):
- 1 1/3 c minus 1/2 Tablespoon Water
- 1/2 Tablespoon Apple Cider Vinegar (Braggs)
- 1/3 c honey (local)
- 1/4 c oil (Aptera Extra Virgin)
- 4 c Sugar
- 2 large pinches salt (Celtic Sea Salt)
Stirring occasionally bring to a boil over high heat. When boiling cover the pan with a tight fitting lid for ~30 seconds. (Taking care for it not to boil over.) Remove the lid. You are getting the steam to release enough water vapor to wash any sugar crystals off the side of the pan. Sugar crystals will destroy candy by causing early crystallization.
At this point attach a candy thermometer to the pan and wait for it to get just a degree over soft ball stage (240F). Watch carefully so you don’t overcook and do NOT stir. (On a side note at this point you should be wearing sturdy pants, close toed shoes and have cold water on hand. Molten sugar is like playing with molten lava. It sticks and it burns.)
As soon as the mixture is at the right temperature poor it into a 9″ x 13″ pan and move to a shelf in the refrigerator. Do NOT scrape the sides of the pan, just pour. Also try to jar the pan as little as possible while moving to the fridge. Once again you are trying to prevent crystals from forming too soon. Also, don’t worry if the oil does not look perfectly blended. That will occur during stirring.
Wait until the bottom of the pan is no longer warm to the touch. (Glass refrigerator shelves make that easy to touch by feeling the shelf instead of moving the pan.) At this point add:
- 3-4 drops Wild Orange essential oil (DoTerra – Our first time trying this on corn allergic daughter)
Now, stir and scrape the bottom of the pan. If you pulled it off right at soft ball stage you might get lucky. You can stir for 15 – 45 minutes and get fondant. If like me it’s way to firm to stir well then you get to make Taffy. Scrape down everything into the center of the pan. Start stirring and folding it over so the oil starts to get worked into the candy. At some point put oil on your hands and kneed and pull the taffy into long strands. Then re-kneed on itself. You want to work it until it goes from clear and lumpy to smooth and opaque/whitish.
Next, cut parchment paper into squares. You will need to experiment with the sizes that work for you. Cut off small pieces of the taffy, roll into a square and twist the ends. They should start to look like the picture above.
Finally since mine were a little on the soft side I’m storing them in the refrigerator so they don’t melt out of their wrapping. Eat and enjoy.