Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Caramelized Sugar Rooster Pop

People these days like simplicity. You can see this in one of the recipes I've seen over and over in the different blogs, banana ice cream, which after being featured on The Kitchn is sure to pop up like dandelions. So I figured, why not share with you MY one ingredient recipe? It's not really made that way for health reasons, considering it's candy, but it comes with a lot of nostalgia.

When I was little, the street vendors in Odessa used to sell golden brown and red lollipops. They were hollow inside and came in various shapes, the favorite of which was a rooster. You'd bite into the head and the whole thing would shatter into pieces and then as you scrambled to get all the shards into your mouth, you'd inevitably end up with sticky sugary face and fingers. It was fantastic!

A few years ago, I was experimenting with spun sugar at my sister's house, who kept stealing some of my not so perfect sugar strands and spirals from the counter. I was about to wash the spoon coated in the leftover sugar when with a loud yell she snatched it out of my hand. "It tastes just like those lollipops!" she said, "Leave it and I'll wash the spoon when I'm done".

They don't sell those rooster pops anywhere here in the states and while I don't know how to make blown sugar yet, I did buy a rooster shaped candy mold and made solid caramelized sugar rooster pops for my sister's birthday a few weeks ago.

Rooster Pop

There is only one ingredient as I've mentioned, sugar, and the steps are easy:

- Carefully coat the mold with a very thin coat of vegetable oil (otherwise you're going to have to lick the treats out of the mold) and set aside some lollipop sticks nearby. You don't want to go looking for them while your hot sugar is solidifying.
- Set a bowl with ice water nearby. You'll need it to stop the sugar from cooking once it's ready.
- Depending on the size/number of molds you have the amount of sugar will vary, but to make 4 of the roosters in the picture I needed just a half a cup of sugar.
- Pour the sugar into small pan set over high heat, making sure it's evenly spread out, and don't touch it. Once you see the sugar starting to melt, you can gently nudge it from the outside in with a heat proof spatula, but don't stir or you'll end up with clumps. Keep nudging gently until all the sugar is liquid and has acquired a nice caramel color. Be careful not to walk away, get distracted, or let the sugar get too dark. It will burn and burned sugar smells and tastes gross.
- Once the pan is full of a golden brown sugar syrup take it off the heat immediately and plunge the bottom of the pan into the ice water to stop the cooking for a few seconds.
- Pour the sugar into the molds, stick in the lollipop sticks, rolling them around to make sure they're in there good, and let them cool completely before you pop them out and enjoy.

Note: if you have extra sugar still left in the pan after your mold is filled, you can pour it into shapes on a silpat or spin it into sugar threads. Basically this is your play sugar and you can try out different things with it, just be sure to be extremely careful. This stuff is HOT!


scrambledhenfruit said...

I LOVE your rooster pop! That's a terrific mold- where did you find it? It's so special when a taste or smell reminds you of a time in your childhood. So glad you were able to re-create it.

Unknown said...

ohhh, Julie wouldn't stop starting at those. I think she was scared to eat them.

Abby said...

What a sweet gift for your sister! I love gifts with memories attached. Plus I love roosters. So win-win!

malishka82 said...

Love your idea! Where did you buy the mold? i'm planning a matrioshka party for my little one and would love to make those for a treat. Thanks in advance!

Anna said...

Masha, I got the molds here:
but they seem to be out of stock. You can browse the site though, they have tons of fun molds at very reasonable prices, just remember to get the hard molds, not the chocolate molds.