I've only played with making candy a few times before. Today I decided to attempt pulled sugar even though I have no heat lamp, torch, etc... Even without the proper tools I cannot wait to get back in there and play some more! This has opened up artistic doors for me that I can't even explain.
I have always been amazed by and wanted to learn glassblowing. I realize that this is different in so many ways, yet still an amazing art. And now that I have pulled my first few curly ribbons and flowers I cannot wait to do it again! Heat lamp on order... check. Torch... check. Bulb and tubing... double check. It's like I have been born into cake decorating all over again.
Oh, and did I mention this is just a hobby? I believe I am becoming obsessed. I'd probably be tempted to head back in a do round 2 if I didn't hear my babies waking up from their naps. Oh well... Soon!!
So tell me a bit more about it. What all can you do with it? I have never even dabbled in candy making/pulled sugar but it sounds fun. You said flowers and such what else? I love finding cool ways to add neat things to cakes!
Oh and P.S. Totally hear ya on the waking kids. Mine just went down. I would totally do more fun stuff during their naps but lately I have just been taking a nap too!
Well, let's just see if an attached file will work. These are the flowers I made (feeble attempts I know for the pros out there, but a girl's gotta start somewhere!)
You can blow ornaments, birds, sculptured shapes. You can twirl it, stretch it, smoosh it, bend it... basically go crazy! I tried to do some curly ribbons, but genius me did it too tight around my dowel and the candy snapped when I tried to get it off after it cooled. I'll have to play with that a little bit.
Okay I have never seen candy flowers so I have to say I love them!!!! Thats so fun!! Me thinks I have something else to try Thank you for sharing that. Any tips before I jump into this? Keep in mind I have zero tools either. Do you know where any tutorials are by chance?
I watched as many videos on youtube as I could find, and I couldn't really find any tutorials for what I wanted to do. However this website was a big help: http://www.cheftalk.com/forum/thread/3434/pulled-sugar-for-dummies
I followed the recipe about 1/4 of the way down the page, except I halved it.
Now, of course not having a heat lamp to keep the marble warm and the sugar pliable was a big hindrance. Since the marble was considerably cooler than what I would want it the sugar immediately started solidifying. That plus the fact that I apparently hadn't gotten enough vegetable on it made the candy stick to the marble, so I ended up just scooping as much as I could to the middle and had a huge crust around the outside. So I colored and flavored just the middle section and pulled away what I could by hand when it was cool enough to touch (which is still pretty dang hot). Sharp kitchen scissors let me cut what sections I needed off while leaving the rest in a mass so it didn't cool too fast.
I probably could have used a blowdryer to help some, but my dryer is really loud and as previously mentioned the kiddos were sleeping.
You're supposed to use a mini torch to melt your pieces and stick them together when you want to assemble, but I also lack one of those so I just stuck them into the icing as close as I could.
Last thing, humidity is a sure fire killer. It will turn your nice clean hard smooth sugar into a sticky surface that picks up the slightest fingerprints. So wear gloves! I just used latex that I had around the house, but it made a big difference.
I really want to take a class now, but the only place around here that does it doesn't have any scheduled right now, and they are quite expensive, so I will probably just keep playing on my own.
If you decide to try it let me know and good luck! Post pics!!
I smiled a very wide smile when I read this thread.
I fell into sugarwork in pretty much the same way and it grabbed me as you've described it.
I must say I commend you for starting out as you have - with none of the tools or tricks of the trade, just your imagination and enthusiasm. Brilliant! So many I find are quick to say they can't do this or that without this or that item..
It's quite plain to see that you're developing your eye and feel for the medium which will only enhance your experience should you ever take on a class.
Well done. Keep going.
SammieB your flowers are so pretty!!! I tried to do the molds for gems (and over-filled them like a total goof) and when they came out, I had to break them apart. Easy enough, but my question is how do you store them until you need them? I found that they were real sticky....any suggestions?
Are you using the new CakePlay isomalt sticks?
Hey bobwonderbuns (love the name)-idk if the question was for me -Im assuming it was since SammieB's flowers are amazing--no I used the regular sugar, water, corn syrup, cream of tartar recipie on the stove top with a candy thermometer....lightly greased mold....???