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Food History: An Ongoing Series Making and Learning About Candy Through History

Average rating:4.8Number of reviews:(1,561)
In this ongoing series, we will be making candy from all eras and highlighting the history behind the candies we love.

Class experience

I have been making candy since I was a kid. It brings great joy to teach these centuries-old skills to the next generation. All of the facts regarding the history of the candy is thoughtfully researched and references of the facts will be provided.
Week of January 29
Blown Sugar
jolly ranchers
A microwavable bowl
two metal straws

Week of February 5
Martha Washington's Candy
1 cup butter melted (vegan version would work as well)
1 pound powdered sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
14 ounces shredded coconut sweetened
14 ounces sweetened condensed milk (coconut version would work)
10 ounces maraschino cherries drained and chopped
3 cups finely chopped pecans (You could add peanuts or oatmeal as an alternative)
16 ounces candy coating such as Ghirardelli melting wafers, Almond bark, etc
Paper towels
Big bowl
Big spoon
Baking sheet
Parchment paper
Microwavable bowl

Week of February 12
Candy Thermometer
Flexible Hard Candy Molds
Pastry Brush
Medium Pot
Coffee/Spice Grinder
2 Cups Granulated Sugar
2/3 Cup Light Corn Syrup
3/4 Cup Water
6 Drops Gel Blue Food Coloring:  https://amzn.to/3h22353
1 Tbsp LorAnn Tart & Sour:  https://amzn.to/3zKuVpD
1 tsp LorAnn Super Strength Strawberry Flavoring:  https://amzn.to/2WPSH5h
1 tsp Fumaric Acid:  https://amzn.to/3yJShun
1/2 Cup Sugar 
7 Tbsp Citric Acid:  https://amzn.to/3DP03qs
2 Tbsp Malic Acid:  https://amzn.to/38Inq70
2 Tbsp Tartaric Acid:  https://amzn.to/3tjmFKT

Week of February 19
Charleston Chew
192g (1 cup) Granulated Sugar
252g (¾ cup) Agave Nectar
½ cup Water
⅛ tsp Salt
2 Large Egg Whites (room temperature) (Or an egg substitute and some lecithin powder)
1 tsp Vanilla Paste
6 oz Milk Chocolate
6 oz Dark Chocolate
56g (¼ cup) Coconut Oil
two 8" brownie pans
parchment paper
medium-sized saucepan
mixer or whisk
medium bowl that is heat resistant

Week of February 26
Pocky Sticks

3 small microwaveable bowls
Food processor OR pastry cutter
Medium bowl
Plastic wrap
Baking sheet
Wire cooling rack
If you do not have a food processor you will need a knife and cutting board
1¼ cups/160 grams all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
½ teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ cup/55 grams cold unsalted butter (½ stick), cut into pieces
3 tablespoons whole milk
¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
3 ounces/85 grams white chocolate, chopped (about ½ cup)
3 ounces/85 grams milk chocolate, chopped (about ½ cup)
3 ounces/85 grams dark chocolate, chopped (about ½ cup)
Vegetable shortening, as needed (about 1/2 cup)
Optional Toppings:
1 tablespoon pulverized freeze-dried raspberries or strawberries, or ½ teaspoon matcha powder
2 tablespoons cocoa nibs
3 tablespoons chopped nuts

Week of March 5
Ganong Chicken Bones

1 cup Sugar Extra Fine Granulated Sugar - you can substitute this for 1 cup of Swerve (a sugar replacement)
2 teaspoons corn starch - you could substitute this with arrowroot
2/3 cup white (light) corn syrup - you could substitute this with honey
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1/3 cup water - if using Swerve, you would use 1/2 cup water
1/8 teaspoon baking soda (optional)
1 1/8 teaspoon glycerin (optional)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup butter - you can substitute this for any fat (coconut oil or vegan butter)
3-5 drops food coloring of choice (gel or liquid is okay)
1 cup chopped dark chocolate (this is about 2 or 3 chocolate bars)
A medium pot
A baking sheet (like a cookie sheet)
Wax paper
A reliable instant read or candy thermometer
Scissors that are okay to grease and use with food (clean)
Rubber/silicone spatula
Small cup with cold water

Week of March 12
Milk Duds

4 ounces water (1/2 cup; 115g)
8 1/2 ounces sugar (1 1/4 cups; 240g)
3/4 teaspoon (3g) Diamond Crystal kosher salt; for table salt, use half as much by volume or use the same weight
6 ounces heavy cream (3/4 cup; 170g)
8 ounces finely chopped dark or milk chocolate (1 1/3 cups; 225g), such as Callebaut or Valrhona; do not use chips
8x8 baking pan
Parchment paper
2 quart pot
Candy thermometer
Baking sheet
Medium microwavable bowl

Week of March 19
Tutti Frutti
500 grams raw papaya / papita
7 cup water
2 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
4 drops food colour (red, green, yellow)
Medium pot
Knife and cutting board
Strainer (small holes)
3 small bowls
(NOTE: This recipe will take time to soak up the syrup and so will not be ready to eat until the next day)

Week of March 26
Cadberry Creme Eggs

½ cup light corn syrup
¼ cup butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
⅛ teaspoon salt
3 cups powdered sugar
yellow gel food coloring
12 ounces milk chocolate melts
Medium microwavable bowl
Medium bowl
Baking sheet
Parchment paper
Learners will be using hot cookware and boiling sugar every class (and sometimes a knife). I ask that a parent or guardian be present for all classes so that we can minimize the risk of injury. Safety tips will also be given at the beginning of every session.

Some recipes include items that your learner may be allergic to or goes against their beliefs. Some cases would include peanuts (allergies) or honey (non-vegan). I try to write ingredients out with all these things in mind and provide alternatives where needed. If you see a recipe that includes ingredients that are not suitable for your learner's diet please reach out to me and I can assist in providing further alterations that would work for the recipe.
Sources for the short presentations come from several food historians:
Mason, Laura. Sweets and Candy: A Global History (Edible). Published by Reaktion Books, 2018.
Richardson, Tim. Sweets: A History of Candy. Bloomsbury Publishing USA, 2002
Kimmerle, Beth. Candy: The Sweet History. Collectors Press, Incorporated, 2004
The recipes for this class are based on historic texts found here:
Ketcham Wheatan, Barbara. Harvard’s Schlesinger Library historic texts in relations to food and recipes: https://thesifter.org/
Average rating:4.8Number of reviews:(1,561)
Hello! am a scientist and adventurer. I have a Masters degree in Animal Science with minors in Chemistry and Fish & Wildlife. I started my journey investigating sheep and goats, went on to study shrimp and zooplankton, and have many years of... 
Group Class


1x per week
85 min

Completed by 19 learners
Live video meetings
Ages: 10-15
3-6 learners per class

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