Women’s Day is upon us, and, even if you’re not celebrating on the actual day, there are many easy ways that you can make the day special for your woman’s family and friends.
One of the easiest ways to celebrate this day is by making candy. You can find tons of great candy-making recipes online. No matter which recipe you follow, however, there are some tips that you should know and use for ensuring that your candy turns out as sweet as the person you’re making it for!
Choose the Right Saucepan
Almost every candy making recipe out there will require you to melt your ingredients in a saucepan. And, while it may seem like just any saucepan would get the job done, there are some tips and tricks to choosing the right one.
To begin with, always choose a medium-sized saucepan. If you go too small, you risk not having enough room for your ingredients. And, if you go too big, your ingredients may not heat evenly, which can cause its own problems.
You should also choose a saucepan with a heavy bottom, meaning it can handle a lot of weight. Typically, when you make candy, those solidified ingredients will weigh a lot, so you definitely do not want a saucepan that is going to break (literally) under pressure.
Also, look for a saucepan with nice straight, even sides so that you do not have to worry about your ingredients boiling over as you cook or spilling over as you stir and transport the saucepan from the burner.
It may sound simple but choosing the right saucepan can make a big difference in how well your candy-making endeavor turns out.
Know When to Use White Sugar
When people are new to making candy, they often think that sugar is sugar. Or, in other words, they think that all sugar is created equally.
However, this is not the case. There are actually many different types of sugar out there other than just your basic white sugar or granulated sugar- the terms are often used interchangeably.
With that said, however, white sugar is one of the most common options. This sugar, which is created via beets or sugarcane, depending on the brand, is typically what you will want to use.
However, always follow recipe instructions, and never make the mistake of thinking that substituting one type of sugar for another is “just fine.” That’s an easy way to have your candy recipe turn out horribly wrong.
Don’t Be Afraid to Use the Microwave
A lot of people, both seasoned candy-makers and newcomers alike, will turn their nose up at the idea of using a microwave in the candy-making process.
With that said, though, a microwave can actually be quite useful, so don’t balk at this suggestion.
For example, you can melt chocolate a lot more quickly and easily in the microwave than you can in the oven or on the stovetop. So, if you find yourself in a pinch or just need to do things a little more quickly, don’t turn your nose up at the microwave or think that it will ruin your candy recipe.
Despite what some people may say, the microwave can actually be a very useful tool when crafting candy, so use it as needed without fear.
(Almost) Always Go for Unsalted Butter
Just as you shouldn’t assume, in the world of candy making, that all sugar is created equally, all butter is not the same either, and the type of butter that you use can and does make a difference.
For instance, almost all candy making recipes will ask you to use unsalted butter. If a recipe doesn’t specify, you can just assume that unsalted is the way to go.
The reason that this is important is because unsalted butter will keep the candy from, you guessed it, having a salty taste instead of the sweet taste you desire.
Also keep in mind that margarine and butter are not one and the same. Margarine has a lot more water than butter, so when you sub it in, you may reduce the calorie content, but you also change the cooking time and other factors, which can cause your recipe to not turn out right.
So, unless a recipe specifically specifies otherwise, which is rare, never use salted butter or margarine in place of the “real deal.”
As you can see, there are many things that you can do to ensure that your candy turns out “just right” this Women’s Day. So, follow these tips for perfect candy every time!