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Print this Recipe    Buttermints

Buttermints

1 cup water
1/2 cup unsalted butter
3 cups granulated sugar
1 1/2 tsp. peppermint extract or 6 drops of oil of peppermint (I prefer the
peppermint oil)
About 5 drops food color, if desired

Butter a marble slab or a 15"x10" jelly roll pan; chill jellyroll
pan in refrigerator while candy is cooking. In a heavy 4 quart
saucepan with lid, combine water and butter. Cook over high heat
until butter is melted. Using a wooden spoon, stir in sugar. Remove
spoon and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-high and cover
the pan for 3 minutes; this will wash down the sugar crystals from
the pan. This recipe will grain very easily if any sugar crystals
are present. Clip on a candy thermometer. Cook to 260F or hard ball
stage. Remove from heat and pour quickly without scraping onto
marble or cold baking sheet. Let stand undisturbed until bubbles
no longer rise to the surface of the candy, this will only take a
few minutes. Using a spatula, gently turn the edges into the center
of the hot candy (this will soften the edges). When candy is cool
enough to handle, pour flavoring and food color over the surface.
Butter fingers liberally. Form candy into a ball, then begin
stretching and pulling as for taffy. Continue pulling and stretching
until candy becomes porous and satiny. Parallel ridges will form
and candy will look puffy and hold its shape. Threads of candy will
form on stretched edges. Pull out into a rope about 1/2" in diameter.
Using buttered scissors, cut candy into little pillows about 3/4"
long. Store in an airtight container for 24 hours to allow candy
to crystallize and mellow. If candy has not crystallized after this
time, shake the pieces in powdered sugar, then return them to the
airtight container; this will begin the crystallization process.
Always store them in airtight containers. Makes about 1 1/2 pounds
of candy.

Note: Buttermints are a little tricky to make. Since they contain
no corn syrup or milk they will sugar at the least agitation. Don't
scrape the cooking pan or move the marble or baking sheet once the
syrup is cooling. If they do turn into sugar, recook the candy with
1 cup water just as you did the first time. Be sure there is no
sugar left undissolved in the pan or on the wooden spoon. Don't
stir the candy once it reaches a boil. A marble slab or a throughly
chilled baking sheet is necessary for success. You may want to have
someone else with you to lend a hand when making these.


Variations:

Lemon: Use lemon extract or oil and yellow food color

Licorice: Use licorice flavoring and black food color

For Holiday Buttermints: At Christmas time, divide candy in two
batches and color half of the mints red and the other half green.

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3 of 6 people found the following review helpful:
Taste: Ease of Prep: Appearance:
Find another recipe, July 17, 2005 - 07:27 PM
Reviewer: Anonymous from SLC, UT
The recipe was right when it said this was difficult -- I tried it three times (once with adding the 1 cup water and reboiling -- it went to sugar every time. Look for another recipe!

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