Sunday, March 6, 2011

Apple Juice Stixs

Awhile back, I mentioned that I was frugal in the kitchen. What I'm about to show you next is a tad embarrassing. There should be a limit on frugality, but nope. I know no bounds. In my last post, I posted a recipe on how to make Apple Puffs and I made a side note that one should reserve the juice from the filling. Why? To make these:

Apple Juice Stixs: Appl-ey and cinnamon-ny

Don't give me that look.  Yes, it's not the most gorgeous creation. Yes, it looks rather unappealing, but I am very proud of myself. To create Apple Stix, I guesstimated everything. Did I know what I was doing? Not exactly, but I did have a purpose.

After I made the filling for the apple puffs, I tasted the juice and it was sickly sweet, but I didn't want to waste it. (Case evidence on being frugal #1) I pondered and munched on an apple puff as I tried to come up with a creative solution. A-ha! Candy!! It's so sweet, it would be perfect for candy. I didn't have enough juice to cover the bottom of the pot so I added a bit more sugar and water and started boiling away. I was aiming for the Hard Crack stage (300° - 310°F), but time was working against me. Stupid me thought that I could get the sugar to reach that temperature in 40 minutes. When 40 minutes hit, it was at the soft ball stage, and I didn't have time because I had a meeting to attend. I had two options at this point: it was waste it or let it cool down and see what I created. I opted for the latter.

My  next dilemma. Where and how should I shape the 242°F sugar?? Aiiiyaaah. The only option: parchment paper. Lucky me and my need to keep all things, I had scraps of parchment paper that I stored in a container for moments like these where I didn't need large sheets of parchment paper. (Case evidence on being frugal #2). I carefully poured the mixture into the creased parchment paper and let it cool down.

Check out the texture!

The verdict: it's an extremely soft and chewy candy, because I only managed to get it to the firm ball stage. It definitely works your mouth and it's great for people that like to chew. The taste of the stix was surprisingly pleasant. It had a sweet aroma of apples with a hint of cinnamon.

Apple Juice Stix

leftover juice from apple puffs

  1. If there isn't much juice left, add more sugar about 1/4 to 1/2 cup and enough water to cover the bottom of the pot.
  2. Boil on medium high until the temperature reaches 245°F. (Next time, I'm going to try reaching the hard crack stage: 300°F to 310°F for a lollipop texture.) Mixture will appear dark brown almost burnt looking, but I assure that it's not.
  3. Pour sugar into creased strips of parchment paper and allow it to cool. If mixture firms up too much during the pouring process, warm it up on the stove until it reaches a pourable consistency.

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