Thursday, April 15, 2010
9:30 AM | Posted by Peter Behringer | | Edit Post
Today I had a major breakthrough with my hard candy line. Natural flavors and colors are usually less forgiving than their artificial counterparts. When making hard candy with natural ingredients, it often requires patience and skill. This is especially true of colors. If color is added at the wrong time or temperature, it can burn off or turn color. In addition, too much stirring to incorporate into a batch can cause crystallization –a fudge like consistency as opposed to that of clear glass. Artificial colors and flavors are far more heat resistant and require less work when folding into a batch.
I have found that green is especially tough to work into hard candy. The colors we experimented with tended to burn off or turn to a strange looking teal or a murky sea-blue. Although, many natural flavors are heat resistant, they do not work well at a heat in excess of 200 degrees. I was able to overcome this obstacle by creating a method of bringing down the temperature while still incorporating the color. The result was a consistent, pretty green piece that retained its clarity. The first green batch I made into sour apple, which I consider to be my second best flavor to date (second to cinnamon-ancho). Tomorrow, I will test a kiwi with a pretty lime green color. Wish me luck!
There are a lot of great flavors that can be used in a green lollipop, make sure to comment if you have any ideas.
- Peter Behringer
- I have worked in the confectionary industry since the age of 14 when my mother founded Peterbrooke Chocolatier. She named the business after my sister Brooke and me. I have long had a passion for making confections. Over the last year, I have enjoyed creating a wide variety of hard candies at home. These included pulled sugar candy canes and cast sugar lollipops. In addition to the hard candies, I also experimented with marshmallow, and jellies. When I purchased marshmallow, lollipops, and other candy, I noticed that they were filled with artificial flavors and colors. Many confections contained high fructose corn syrup and other unnatural ingredients. Increasingly, candy was manufactured in Mexico or China. I believed that consumers deserved better. I believed that consumers deserved pure, simple, sweets made the traditional way with real cane sugar while using natural flavors and colors. It became clear to me that there would be a need for my sweet services! A good friend and now business partner approached me about a neat old house in Springfield –a quaint up and coming Jacksonville neighborhood. Everything just clicked and Sweet Pete’s was born!