|old boots, grease guns and metal rasps make candy all the sweeter!|
A recipe that actually works:
1) Fondant. Combine 4 cups of granulated sugar, 1 1/2 cups water and 1 tsp. glycerin (available from cake decorating or homebrewing supply stores). Cook on high heat, stirring constantly, until boiling. Then stop stirring and boil to soft ball stage (240F). Remove from heat and pour into cool pan and let sit until 114-115F; the solution will take on a slight yellow tinge and form a sort of film on top. Stir until it sets hard; it will first turn creamy, then look light a white paste, before becoming rock hard. Take chunks of the fondant and knead by hand; pressure will return it to a soft consistency. Store overnight in a cool location (not refrigerator; an unheated cellar is ideal).
2) Starch solution. Combine 2 cups of cool water, 1 cup of corn starch and 1 tsp. of cream of tartar. Stir until starch dissolves. Heat on medium heat, stirring vigorously, until 180F; it will be a thick white paste at this point. Add fondant slowly, incorporating by stirring fondant in until it dissolves while continuing to heat. The solution will become slightly translucent, with a faint yellow tinge.
3) The brilliant bit. Pour the combined solution into a Pyrex container and microwave on high in one minute increments, stirring after each. The solution will become transparent, almost clear. The mixture is done when one hears bubbles of steam popping from the surface and the surface looks to be changing texture.
This is the critical step to avoid candy sweat later. Heating on the stovetop would take a very long time and risks scorching the starch. It is almost impossible to drive off enough moisture that way.
Add flavorings and pour into a greased 9x9 inch baking pan. Traditionally, one adds 2 tsp. rose water, 1/2 cup pistachio nuts and a drop or two of red food coloring.
Store in a cool place overnight.
4) The 3rd day! Using an oiled knife (or a pizza cutter treated with non-stick spray), cut into pieces. 8x6 rectangular pattern is about the right size. Dredge in powdered sugar.
If the pieces begin to sweat once they are coated in powdered sugar, dust off as much powdered sugar as possible, set on paper towels and blot, to remove as much water as possible, then microwave them again, turning the pieces occasionally, until the surface is not sticky to the touch when cool. then coat again in powdered sugar. They won't be as attractive-looking as commercially sold Turkish Delight, but they will still have a better texture.