I’ve been so excited to share this project, but it was part of the advent calendar box Matt and I are doing, so I had to wait till it was revealed.
Matt’s not really a candy person, but I LOVE candy, so when I find something that he likes I usually go overboard buying it for him. When I was thinking of things to put in the advent box the idea of candy dots (or as some people call them, candy buttons) came to mind. These are such a little kid kind of candy, but Matt likes them, as do I because, well, they are fun. Real sheets would be too big to put in a tiny advent box and I just thought “I wonder if there are recipes online for making my own”. Immediately after doing a quick google search I find that it is simply royal frosting with food dye, and I definitely know how to make that, after hosting my annual gingerbread house making parties.
I made a batch of royal frosting, referencing recipes online using powdered sugar, egg whites (the boxed pasteurized type in the refrigerated section at the grocery store), and cream of tarter. I divided the finished frosting in 6 ziplock bags and then began adding drops of food coloring until I got the colors I wanted. Red turned pink, yellow, blue, and then mixed the primary colors to make the secondary colors, orange, green and purple. With all the colors mixed, I nipped off a corner tip on each bag of frosting and then was able to push the frosting out of the bag, like real frosting bags.
After that I had tons of frosting left and I had a plan to go the other direction and make mega rolls of candy dots. Think Willy Wonka, endless rolls of candy. While I was working on my looong strips, I realized I had a rainbow of colors. And just like that, I started making DOUBLE RAINBOW THEMED MEGA CANDY DOTS! Matt thought that was hilarious.
If you’ve ever had candy dots you know each dot is solid and hard sugar. I know from working with royal frosting it starts getting hard pretty quickly, but I wasn’t sure how long it would take for each dot to become entirely solid. The next day I attempted to smoosh one to see if it was solid and the very inside was still a bit soft. It probably took a couple days for them to get thoroughly hard, but once they were done, they really did taste and feel exactly like how candy dots feel and taste. I forgot to mention, I had also added lime juice to the secondary colors, but it must not have been enough because we couldn’t discern a difference between the primary and secondary colors with the completed candies. Perhaps if I used the “True Lemon” or “True Lime” products, which are crystallized, I could have added enough to make them flavored. It would be interesting to try a variety of different extracts and flavors to the icing. I just didn’t want to add more liquid to the recipe because I was afraid it wouldn’t harden properly.
When I was telling friends about this they asked if I had used waxed paper instead of regular paper, to avoid the bits of paper you get in your mouth from eating the original candy. I wanted my dots to be authentic looking and even though no one wants to eat paper, it’s part of the experience, so I didn’t, but it is an option. And to tell the truth, my candy dots that I made released easily from the paper. I don’t know if it was the type of the paper I used or the recipe. They’ve been fun and delicious as we’ve been munching on them for days.
There you go! If you are looking for a fun candy project, try making some candy dots.