Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create an account.

KristenP

Chewy Candy Help

Recommended Posts

Hi All,

I'd like to make a candy that is similar to the Ginger Chews made by Ginger People, but slightly softer (those are hazardous to dental work!) The ingredients for the Chews are simply sugar, tapioca starch and ginger. I've got other flavors in mind, so I'm not that concerned about the ginger right now, but I can't get the consistency right. It just ends up a gelatinous goo. I've made numerous stovetop attempts, cooking the starch and sugar together, adding the starch at the end, etc. I'm wondering if I should be dehydrating as the last step?

I've consulted Grewling's Chocolates and Confections, but didn't find anything really close to what I'm looking for. I'd like to stay away from gelatin, and probably pectin, but am open to other starches and ingredients. I don't want a gummy bear texture, and I'd rather not a gum drop texture, though that might be my fall back. The Botan Rice Candy would be another example of the texture I'd like to get close to. I'm not a professional, but am fairly good with execution :) Any advice to set me in the right direction? I'd like to hear any thoughts you have!

Thanks much!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would love to know the answer to this too. If you ever get it figured out, please post your recipe!

What temperatures have you tried cooking the sugar to so far?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I love ginger and I love chews. Never seen Ginger Chews by Ginger People, but then I live in the middle of nowhere in the far frozen north. Would love a recipe if you come up with one.

And welcome to eGullet. Good and helpful people here.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would love to know the answer to this too. If you ever get it figured out, please post your recipe!

What temperatures have you tried cooking the sugar to so far?

I will let you know if I figure it out. With only two essential ingredients, how hard can it be?? Ha. I was messing around with a copy cat starburst recipe last night, but I don't like the butter it calls for. Though it may give me another route. I've cooked the sugar anywhere between soft and hard ball.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I love ginger and I love chews. Never seen Ginger Chews by Ginger People, but then I live in the middle of nowhere in the far frozen north. Would love a recipe if you come up with one.

And welcome to eGullet. Good and helpful people here.

Oh, the Ginger Chews are pretty darn good. I'd be happy to send you some! It'd be pretty easy to pop a bag in the mail.

Thank you for the welcome! I've been surfing the site for over a year and thought this might be the best group to help. Fingers crossed...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would love to know the answer to this too. If you ever get it figured out, please post your recipe!

What temperatures have you tried cooking the sugar to so far?

I will let you know if I figure it out. With only two essential ingredients, how hard can it be?? Ha. I was messing around with a copy cat starburst recipe last night, but I don't like the butter it calls for. Though it may give me another route. I've cooked the sugar anywhere between soft and hard ball.

I'm not an expert in candy-making (still hoping someone will chime in here) but you may need some fat content to get the texture you're after.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Have you considered playing around with a recipe for Turkish Delight? Not as chewy as bontan ame (the "real" japanese candy is bontan ame--bontan being the citrus which gives the candy its flavour), but more similar, I think, than a caramel.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I suspect that this confection is more like a taffy than anything else. The difficulty will be in "pulling" the product before sizing and cutting.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You've probably already seen this http://radmegan.blogspot.ca/2011/03/homemade-ginger-chews.html which makes a hard candy. But you could give it a try and just cook it the caramel to a soft ball stage or slightly harder. In this recipe, the starch isn't mixed into the mixture, it's just used to coat the candies.

In the comments, there are a couple of other recipes people have played with. One includes temps for the caramel--very helpful as a reference point when you're playing around. The second recipe (second last comment) sounds like the texture might be closer to what you're looking for (but no temps!).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

KristenP, on 13 May 2013 - 12:53, said:

I will let you know if I figure it out. With only two essential ingredients, how hard can it be?? Ha. I was messing around with a copy cat starburst recipe last night, but I don't like the butter it calls for. Though it may give me another route. I've cooked the sugar anywhere between soft and hard ball.

You'd be very surprised at the variety of ways you can combine sugar, starch, and ginger. Personally, I think I would keep messing around with the recipe you found of that website, that will probably give you something you can make yourself and enjoy. When it comes to the real ginger chews, there's really no telling how it ginger has been processed, and I think they add more then just juice, which means it could be processed in a way that we cant really do at home.

I think this is a unique candy in itself, a 'chew' can refer to a lot of things. I dont think its akin to a taffy though, it doesnt resemble a pulled candy, and a taffy would have more then sugar, starch, and ginger. Not to mention if you did pull a candy like that, it would crystallize very quickly. If you make a caramel, and pulled it once its cooled like you would taffy, your cut pieces would crystallize a few hours later, and have more of a short fudge texture then anything you would call a 'chew.'

Anyways, I guess what I'm saying is that I'd recommend to keep playing with the recipe you have, theres too many variables to realistically expect really replicate this candy exactly and make different flavors. The proportions of the ingredients are unknown, and when it comes to starch, that makes a huge difference, and not to mention, like you said, they could have a drying stage in the process. And also the ginger seems to be a pretty large part of the candy, so if you wanted to make different flavors, you really would have to formulate it quite differently if one were omitting the ginger.

I hope I'm not being discouraging or anything! Sorry if I am! You'll find something you are happy with, please let us know!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Now I'm curious about this, seriously, I'm going to get a bag of these things to see the texture.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I like the Ginger Chews also...closest thing I could think of with similar texture is a stale Tootsie Roll. It's not the same, but a similar taffy kind of texture that threatens to pull fillings out of your teeth.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I love ginger and I love chews. Never seen Ginger Chews by Ginger People, but then I live in the middle of nowhere in the far frozen north. Would love a recipe if you come up with one.

And welcome to eGullet. Good and helpful people here.

Oh, the Ginger Chews are pretty darn good. I'd be happy to send you some! It'd be pretty easy to pop a bag in the mail.

Thank you for the welcome! I've been surfing the site for over a year and thought this might be the best group to help. Fingers crossed...

Seriously, be careful what you offer. I've never had a "ginger chew." But love ginger. And chewy things. And candy. Me too, please!

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Have you considered playing around with a recipe for Turkish Delight? Not as chewy as bontan ame (the "real" japanese candy is bontan ame--bontan being the citrus which gives the candy its flavour), but more similar, I think, than a caramel.

Yes! I have gone to the Grewling recipe for Turkish Delight as a guide, with the same thought. That's where I got my idea of the proportions I might need. Still the texture isn't quite there.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I suspect that this confection is more like a taffy than anything else. The difficulty will be in "pulling" the product before sizing and cutting.

I've considered that as well, but have no interest in the pulling, and it's still not the perfect texture I'm looking for :)


Edited by KristenP (log)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Now I'm curious about this, seriously, I'm going to get a bag of these things to see the texture.

Good! You'll enjoy them! And I hope it gives you some ideas.... they are a tad firmer than what I want, but very close.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You've probably already seen this http://radmegan.blogspot.ca/2011/03/homemade-ginger-chews.html which makes a hard candy. But you could give it a try and just cook it the caramel to a soft ball stage or slightly harder. In this recipe, the starch isn't mixed into the mixture, it's just used to coat the candies.

In the comments, there are a couple of other recipes people have played with. One includes temps for the caramel--very helpful as a reference point when you're playing around. The second recipe (second last comment) sounds like the texture might be closer to what you're looking for (but no temps!).

Thank you! I saw that last year, but hadn't revisited since. I'll check out the comments....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

KristenP, on 13 May 2013 - 12:53, said:

I will let you know if I figure it out. With only two essential ingredients, how hard can it be?? Ha. I was messing around with a copy cat starburst recipe last night, but I don't like the butter it calls for. Though it may give me another route. I've cooked the sugar anywhere between soft and hard ball.

You'd be very surprised at the variety of ways you can combine sugar, starch, and ginger. Personally, I think I would keep messing around with the recipe you found of that website, that will probably give you something you can make yourself and enjoy. When it comes to the real ginger chews, there's really no telling how it ginger has been processed, and I think they add more then just juice, which means it could be processed in a way that we cant really do at home.

I think this is a unique candy in itself, a 'chew' can refer to a lot of things. I dont think its akin to a taffy though, it doesnt resemble a pulled candy, and a taffy would have more then sugar, starch, and ginger. Not to mention if you did pull a candy like that, it would crystallize very quickly. If you make a caramel, and pulled it once its cooled like you would taffy, your cut pieces would crystallize a few hours later, and have more of a short fudge texture then anything you would call a 'chew.'

Anyways, I guess what I'm saying is that I'd recommend to keep playing with the recipe you have, theres too many variables to realistically expect really replicate this candy exactly and make different flavors. The proportions of the ingredients are unknown, and when it comes to starch, that makes a huge difference, and not to mention, like you said, they could have a drying stage in the process. And also the ginger seems to be a pretty large part of the candy, so if you wanted to make different flavors, you really would have to formulate it quite differently if one were omitting the ginger.

I hope I'm not being discouraging or anything! Sorry if I am! You'll find something you are happy with, please let us know!

No, not discouraging at all! I think you've got the concept of what I'm looking for exactly. And all very good points regarding taffy, caramel, ingredient proportions,etc. I really appreciate your thoughts. Thank you.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  • Similar Content

    • By Kerry Beal
      It's that time again - I'm the group leader for a group of newly minted Ecole Chocolat grads taking a masters course. This one is in Wieze, Belgium. You may recall my last trip as group leader for Ecole when I took a group to Valrhona in France.
       
      I got my packing done on Sunday - was all prepared, car was to pick me up at 6 pm to drive me to the airport. Got a little suspicious when the child was late getting off the bus from school - the driver said that the highway wasn't moving well. At about 5:15 I got a call from the limo service to say that the car that was coming to get me had moved 2 car lengths in the last 30 minutes. Apparently a car roll over on the westbound lanes of highway had ejected two people into the eastbound lanes and the entire highway was closed in both directions.
       
      So I set out in my own vehicle - which of course had no gas, and needed oil... at least the toll highway got me past the problem.  Airport wants $175/week to park - so a quick text to @Alleguede and he came to fetch my car from the airport to park in his driveway until I return.
       
      So here I sit in the lounge awaiting my departure.
       
      I'm doing the Jet Lag program that I have done several times before that has worked well for me. Overcoming Jet Lag, by Charles F. Ehret and Lynne Waller Scanlon. This involves food and caffeine modification. So for the past 4 days I've been drinking Rooibos Provence throughout the day and between 3 and 4:30 slugging down as much real tea as my bladder can handle! The dietary part consists of alternating days of 'feasting' and 'fasting' with high protein breakfasts and lunches and high carb dinners. I had planned to get the driver to stop at the Tim Horton's at the top of my street to pick up the black coffee that is to be taken at around 6 pm the day of travel - unfortunately as I was driving myself that didn't happen - so when I hit the lounge I drank down two cups of strong black caffeinated coffee - better late than never. I'm not much of a coffee drinker - and particularly not black. Should be good for some palpitations when I start the next part of the program which is to sleep as soon as I get on the plane!
       
      This is a 'fasting day', 800 calories suggested - I left my carb meal until I reached the lounge.
       

       
      ]
       
      One of the two cups of coffee.
       

       
      These are the "Gentlemen Retire to the Library' chocolates that I posted before that I am taking along - port wine PDF and tobacco ganache. I used Sosa tobacco flavouring this time instead of a cigar so I don't have to concern myself with nicotine poisoning.
       
       
       
       
    • By pastrygirl
      I'm watching The Sweet Makers on BBC - four British pastry chefs & confectioners recreate Tudor, Georgian, and Victorian sweets with petiod ingredients and equipment. A little British Baking Show, a little Downtown Abbey. 
       
      Check it it out for a slice of pastry history. 
       
      BBC viewer only available to the U.K., but on this side of the pond where there's a will, there's a way. 
    • By boombonniewhale
      Hello! I was wondering if anyone on here has tried using an induction cooktop with confection making (caramels, fondant, marshmallows ect...). My stove has literally three settings, and the low setting still burns sugar and there is no such thing as maintaining any sort of "simmer". I was looking into getting a cooktop and buying some copper sugar pots and mauviel makes this thing that goes inbetween. I would love to hear any input into this idea or your experiences!
       
      ~Sarah
    • By ChocoMom
      Greetings all! 
      Quick question ...Has anyone used confectionery coating in ganache, and been successful?   I'd normally not do this, but I have a very dear friend who is allergic to chocolate. Her son is graduating from high school, and she hired me to do chocolates.   We'd all like for her to enjoy something from the selections at the reception.  The only pieces I can do for her without any chocolate derivatives is of the white chocolate variety.  So, white confectionery coating is the only alternative I can find to sub in. 
       
      Now, with the actual chocolates, I did a butter ganache with white chocolate, mango puree and coconut. (Tastes amazing, btw.)   If I do the same method with the softened butter, glucose; then mix in melted confectionery coating, will it harden up when I add the puree, or stay soft?   I tend to think it would be okay, but I absolute hate the idea of wasting that puree.  So, thought it best to ask here and see if this a disaster in the making- or a decent alternative...
      Thank you for any help and advice you're able to lend.  As always, your expertise is very much appreciated! 
      Andrea
    • By pastrygirl
      Some chocolate makers have incredibly intricate chocolate molds that boggle my mind.  How do they clean them?  Or do they not clean/polish them?  Or have an army of interns?  Or just do it perfectly every time and polishing molds is for suckers anyway?
       
       
      They are beautiful, but seem so very impractical.  What am I missing?
       
       
      The Soma is not bad, mostly thin lines, but the Askinosie ...
       
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×