A List Maker's Life: Christmas Spiced Candy for Cider

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Christmas Spiced Candy for Cider

Alternatively Titled: The post where I skip over 7 months of family happenings to share a yummy idea you may want to try.

On the hunt for more oily inspiration, I recently attended a make & take class hosted by a fabulous and creative friend. She had experimented with essential oil cough drops, as have I, but didn't love the texture of the final product or the taste of the honey.  She decided to try an alternative, adapting a family rock candy tradition into thieves candy. The outcome was delicious.  While fighting bronchitis and strep throat in the last several weeks we made several batches of the thieves candy to soothe our throats. The peppermint and thieves taste was a bonus! This is not an all natural, all healthy recipe by any means. Yet, it is so easy to make and works better for us than the other cough drop alternatives we have tried. 

Beside the fact I am out of Thieves and waiting on an auto ship, I wanted to try adjusting this recipe to make a stir in spice mix for our Christmas Eve cider. I have been loving a clove and orange blend in the diffuser this month, so that is what I chose for our holiday cider flavor. Cinnamon Bark would probably be another great addition to this recipe. 

Begin by measuring the following ingredients in a sauce pan:
3- 3/4 cups of organic cane sugar
1-1/4 cups light corn syrup
1 cup water

Bring ingredients to a boil, gradually, stirring continuously. Boil until the temperature reaches 300 degrees on a candy thermometer.  Take off the burner to cool slightly.  Continue stirring to monitor how thick the candy is hardening.  When you can not cool any longer and still be able to stir through the mixture it is time to add your essential oils.  For the spice cider stir in I used 30 drops of orange, 10 drops of nutmeg, and 15 drops of clove.  Just s note: you might want to experiment with ratios to personal taste. I started with equal parts clove and orange (15 drops each) and 5 nutmeg.  It didn't taste strong enough to flavor anything even though they tasted good on their own.  When the oils are stirred in pour the mixture on to prepared 9x13 pans (two per batch).  I spread about 1/4 inch of powdered sugar over both of my trays before I started.

Let the candy cool and harden completely.  When it is hardened, pick the slab off the tray and gently tap it against a metal spoon to crack into small pieces.

Package the final product or store it in a container until you are ready to sneak a few to just enjoy as is, or to drop into your hot water, cider and tea for a delightful infused flavor.


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