I was a little skeptical about these suckers. After all, I’m not a big fan of candy making. It’s too complicated for me.
But actually, this one was pretty darn easy. And, I was happy to finally have an excuse to use my cute Valentines sprinkles.
I cleaned out my pantry recently, and found the perfect sized box to hold all my sprinkles. As long as I don’t purchase even one more bottle. I discovered a bunch of stuff in there I had forgotten about, including the heart-shaped sprinkles.
Which is too bad, because they are dang freaking cute.
Really the main key to making candy is just being prepared. Get all your stuff out ahead of time. Use the bathroom and pour yourself a drink and finish the current episode of whatever you’re binge watching before you start.
You don’t need distractions.
And, because I know you’re going to ask, let me answer in advance.
Yes, you do need the ice water. I learned this the hard way when I forgot to put the pan in ice water and my candy was all full of bubbles.
No, you don’t need the flavor extract, but it helps. You can use any flavor you want, though.
Yes, you will need to work fast to get the sprinkles on there. No, they don’t stay really well, which is why I ended up being happier stirring them into the candy before I poured it out.
I wasn’t positive my family would love these, but they went plenty fast. My niece even told me I got her to like coconut, which is a real plus.
I think I might make them for more holidays.
Easy Valentine Suckers
- 2 cups sugar
- 2/3 cup corn syrup
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/2 teaspoon coconut or other extract (optional)
- Prepare ahead by lining two baking sheets with silicone liners. Have sucker sticks and sprinkles handy. Place a candy thermometer in a heavy saucepan and have a pastry brush nearby. Fill a large bowl with ice water.
- In a heavy saucepan, combine sugar, corn syrup and water. Bring to a boil.
- Let boil 5-7 minutes, stirring occasionally. Wet the pastry brush with water and periodically brush the sides of the pan just above the candy to keep it from crystallizing. Cook until candy reaches 310F, the hard crack stage.
- Place the saucepan in the bowl ice water, making sure no water gets inside the pan. This cools the pan and quickly stops the cooking process. Stir the candy while in the water, about 15 seconds, until smooth and clear.
- Add extract and stir well. If desired, you can add sprinkles to the candy at this stage.
- Pour candy onto prepared pans, making about 3-inch circles. Quickly set sucker sticks in the middle of each sucker and put sprinkles on top. You must work quickly during this stage. If the candy in the saucepan begins to harden before you are done, set it back on the stove over low heat to warm and soften it slightly.
- Let cool before gently removing from pan and serving. I found that they were safe to move within 5-10 minutes.