Thursday, September 06, 2007

Candy S.O.S.

A friend of mine has discovered that her son is allergic to artificial colors. Not a big deal overall, but the thing is, he loves sour candy, particularly stuff like SweeTarts. She wanted to know if there's some way her little budding chef could make his own sour candy. Intriguing, isn't it? It seems like it should be possible with the help of some citric acid, which apparently is readily available at beer- and wine-making stores (as well as the Internet, of course). I'd love to experiment with this but the very-mobile H-man has been cramping my style lately, so if anyone has any suggestions, I'd love to hear them!


cybele said...

I used to make hard candy when I was a kid (I'd get citric acid at the pharmacy). It's pretty simple, just boiled sugar & corn syrup (but requires supervision for smaller kids because of the heat).

I've seen Pixy Stix type candy made, it's pretty simple (though kind of dusty). Though they usually use malic acid for the tartness.

Sift together dextrose (you can buy it by the pound on Amazon and probably at vitamin stores), malic acid or citric acid + flavors (a little lemon oil).

To make it pretty the kids can put it in little tubes or colored jars for dispensing.

Creating the tablets, however, is a little more difficult as it requires a lot of pressure. There's no liquid in SweeTarts, they just use high pressures (like making pills). I suppose the kid could add a little bit of water (maybe with a spray bottle) and then spread it out on a sheet and put something heavy on top for a day or two to see if could compress into a wafer or something.

Please post any results!

In the mean time, try St. Claire's Organic, they make a line of tarts that are all natural. They're even available in bulk.

Kris Bordessa said...

Thanks, Patti! I'll let you know if I have any success.