If you've ever had rock candy before, you know that most of the wow factor is in how pretty it looks rather than the flavor. And to be perfectly honest, I think we're all OK with that. However, I thought it would be cool to make a version of the candy that felt a little more sophisticated than your usual blue raspberry flavored kid's treat. Not only can you make this candy at home, but the rose flavoring and the gold flaked accents make this perfect for a pretty wedding or baby shower type of occasion. Ready to get started?
Rose-Flavored Rock Candy
Adapted from Hard Candy Recipe
3 3/4 cups white sugar
1 1/2 cups light corn syrup
1 cup water
food coloring (I used pink gel food coloring)
1/2 teaspoon rose extract (use 1/4 teaspoon if you only want a hint of rose)
gold sprinkles (optional)
Cover a cookie sheet (one with sides) with foil and lightly oil the foil so the candy will remove easier. Combine your water, sugar and corn syrup in a medium-sized saucepan. Stir to combine. Place the saucepan over medium heat and warm until the sugar dissolves, stirring occasionally.
Once the sugar has dissolved, bring the mixture up to a boil and place a candy thermometer into the pot. Do not stir the liquid during this stage. Watch the pot in the first few minutes and adjust the temperature to find an even boiling point (too high will make it start to spill over the top). Let the mixture boil until the temperature reaches 300° F (it could take 20-30 minutes depending on your pot and type of stove).
Have your extract and food coloring ready because as soon as it reaches 300°, you'll want to take it off the stove and quickly stir in your extract and food coloring. The mixture will hiss a bit at you when you pour them in, but just stir quickly until combined.
I would also suggest having some boiling water ready to pour into your pot and dip your utensils in once the candy is poured. Really hot water is the best way to get all that sugar mixture off your cookware and thermometer.
If you want to add any sprinkles on top of your candy, wait 7-10 minutes until it's cooled down a bit, sprinkle them across the top, and then lightly push them into the candy with the back of a spoon.
Let the candy cool for about 45 minutes. Then use a hammer to break your candy into whatever size pieces you want (either wash the hammer first or put wax paper on top of the candy before hitting). Now your fancy candy is ready to eat!
You can break them into much smaller pieces if you like, but I thought the bigger chunks were so beautiful. I also kept thinking how pretty it would be to use pieces to accent the top of cupcakes or a cake. If you aren't a big fan of rose flavor, just substitute a different flavored clear extract.
If you're wondering how to eat this candy, it's obviously not something that you just swallow whole. You can either break off a piece and suck on it like any other hard candy, or you can crunch on it like you would with a piece of peanut brittle. The rose flavor is unexpected for a candy and I really like how it elevates the treat a bit. I would definitely reserve this candy for adults rather than a kids' party because of the shape, but it would be really pretty in little bags as a favor for guests. Hope you decide to make some for your next event! xo. Laura
Credits // Author and Photography: Laura Gummerman. Photos edited with A Beautiful Mess actions.