Makes 3/4 to 1 pound
• 2 cups granulated sugar
• 1 1/2 cups water
• 1/4 cup corn syrup
• 1 to 3 drops oil of wintergreen
• 1 to 2 drops food coloring
1. Combine the sugar, water, and corn syrup in a 1 1/2-quart saucepan and stir over medium-low heat until the sugar is dissolved. Continue cooking without stirring to the soft-ball stage, 238°F. With a pastry brush, continuously brush the sides of the pan with cold water to dissolve any sugar crystals.
2. Pour the syrup onto a marble slab and let it cool about 10 minutes. With a spatula or wooden spoon, scrape the candy to the center of the slab and beat it vigorously until it is white, stiff, and free of lumps, which may take anywhere from 10 to 40 minutes. Form the candy into a ball, wrap securely in plastic wrap, and let it “ripen” at room temperature for at least 24 hours. (Ripening ensures a creamy fondant.)
3. Divide the fondant in half. Heat one half in a double boiler until softened and smooth. Stir in the oil of wintergreen. Pour the fondant onto the marble slab and let it cool about 5 minutes, or until it is easy to handle. Shape the fondant into marble-sized balls.
4. Wash the double boiler, and heat the remaining fondant. Stir in the food coloring of your choice, and heat until smooth. Let the colored fondant thicken in the pan 2 to 3 minutes, then spoon it over the balls. Let them harden at room temperature 40 to 50 minutes before removing them from the marble.
5. Store, covered, at room temperature or in the refrigerator.
Variation: Ginger Wafers
1. Heat the ripened fondant in a double boiler until softened and smooth. Stir in 1 or 2 drops oil of ginger, or 1 teaspoon ground ginger for a speckled look, and 1 drop of food coloring.
2. Drop fondant from a spoon to form round wafers, or pour it onto a slab and let it cool until stiff, then use small cutters or forms to press out shapes. Let harden at room temperature and store covered.
Jennifer Van Norman of Loveland, Colorado, is a freelance food developer and recipe tester. Besides frequent appearances in Woman’s Day magazine, her work is featured on the recipe cards packaged with Perdue chicken.
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