Friday, 15 September 2017

Vegan Candy Corn

I love Autumn. I love the colour of the leaves as they fall from the trees. I love the crisp, chilly weather that allows me to wear my large collection of knitted jumpers. But most of all, I love the food. Comforting soups and stews, pumpkin spice coffee...well pumpkin spice everything! And of course, candy corn. 

I haven't had candy corn since going vegan because the original version is full of honey, sometimes gelatin & confectioners glaze (code for beeswax & shellac - ew!) The past few years I've searched the web for a vegan version, but there doesn't appear to be one! If anyone finds some, please let me know! This year I decided enough was enough, I would just have to make my own!

While there are plenty of recipes for vegan candy corn out there, I don't have a candy thermometer (or the patience to use one!) Last week I made these Vegan Googly Eyes by the incredibly talented Fork and Beans, and I thought the flavour was somewhat similar to what I remember candy corn tasting like! So a few adaptations here and there and I think I've got something close enough to the original, but 100% vegan and not quite so sickly! 

Vegan Candy Corn
Recipe adapted from Fork and Beans
Makes about 2 cups

2C powdered sugar (plus extra for dusting the counter top)
2tsp cornstarch
1/4tsp salt
2Tbsp liquid glucose or corn syrup
2tsp pure maple syrup
2tsp dairy free milk
1/2tsp vanilla extract

Orange and yellow food colouring gel

Line two baking trays with parchment paper and set aside.

In a large mixing bowl combine the powdered sugar, cornstarch & salt. Make a well in the center and add the liquid glucose, maple, milk & vanilla. Mix with a wooden spoon until the mixture comes together to form a very stiff dough. Mix with your hands until the dough is very smooth (if it's too dry add another 1/2tsp milk) 

Split the dough into three equal portions and add a few drops of food colouring to the first two bowls until you achieve the desired orange and yellow colours. I found it helpful to make a hole in the dough, put the food colouring in the hole and then knead the dough by hand to incorporate the colour into it. Dust the counter top with powdered sugar and knead the dough until its an even colour and isn't sticky. Repeat with the second bowl of dough.

Dust the counter top with powdered sugar. Roll each ball of dough into a long sausage shape (depending on the size of your kitchen counter you may wish to split each ball of dough in half and do this in two batches) Once the sausages are about 1cm thick, layer them together and just gently press down to meld them together. (See above photo)

Cut the strip of dough into small triangles (see above photo) and then use your fingers to round the corners off and smooth down the surface of the candy. Place on the lined baking tray and repeat until all the mixture is used up. I found that after a while the dough did dry out a little bit, but the heat from handling them was enough to soften it up again. 

Leave the candy on the trays to dry out at room temperature for 24hrs, turning them over halfway through. Store in an airtight container, they last for a long time (unless they're gobbled up!)

My favourite way to eat the candy corn is mixed with roasted, salted peanuts! Delicious!

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