Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Candy is dandy.

But liquor beer is quicker.

Last week was a doozie.  I was still feeling a little off from the stomach bug I caught over the weekend but I had no choice but to drag ass into work on Monday.  The department was two travel agents short and I was on call for our after hours emergency line.  To top it all off, I was anticipating a gift from Mother Nature, which is a totally inappropriate topic of conversation to discuss on a food blog but anyone who knows me knows I'm not one to mince words when it comes to matters of TMI. 

You can imagine the ball of fun I was last week.

BUT!  This week is different.  I'm no longer on after hours duty (at least until my turn comes around again next month), the DC area will be seeing its first balmy day of the year and I have a 3-day weekend chock full 'o nothing to look forward to.  All signs are pointing to awesome.

Naturally, I've been celebrating with beer.  Drinking it, giving it away and even turning it into candy.  I found a recipe for beer lollipops on the Celebration Generation blog and I gotta's pretty genius. The recipe lists hop cones or pellets as one of its ingredients.  I didn't have any on hand so I omitted them.  I also didn't have lollipop sticks so I made candy drops instead.

Beer Candy

 1/2 cup beer
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 light corn syrup

Lightly butter a baking sheet.  Set aside.

In a heavy saucepan, combine all 3 ingredients.  Over medium-high, bring the mixture to a boil then place a candy thermometer into the saucepan.  Stir the mixture until the temperature reaches 300 degrees.

Remove the pan from heat and let it cool for a minute while you continue stirring.

Use a spoon to drop spoonfuls (as opposed to forkfuls) of the candy mixture onto your baking sheet.  It starts to firm up pretty quickly as it cools so this is where you want to (carefully) pick up the pace.  Try not to burn the crap out of yourself.  

If you prefer freeform candy pieces or are prone burning the crap out of yourself, pour the entire mixture into the pan.  Once the sheet is cool, you can break it like you would peanut brittle.

I want candy.

Some of the hoppiness cooked off in the process so I want to try adding the additional hops next time around.  The malt is the dominant flavor and when combined with the caramelized sugar, it is delicious.  I want to experiment with this candy using different types of beer.  What do you think?  A stout?  Or maybe a rich, figgy dubbel?  Yeah, definitely a dubbel.


  1. Girl, you are an evil genius. While I'm not a fan of it myself, I think that Guinness would be a great candidate to use in your next batch.

  2. I'm definitely prone to burning the crap out of myself - thanks for the tips!! This looks very interesting even though I am not a beer fan. I bet you could make a tasty homemade root beer barrel kind of thing like this.

  3. Young's Double Chocolate Stout.

    Do it.

  4. Wendi - Guinness works so well in cupcakes. I'd like to think that it'll work just as in other areas of sweetness.

    breadandputter - Mmm. Homemade root beer candies would be really good. I love those things.

    Harry - FBC candymaking party?

  5. What about ginger beer? I wonder if you'd have to knock down the amount of sugar so that the candies aren't overly sweet. Dang, looks like I'm going to have to pick up some gb at TJ's and give this a go.

  6. i agree with Wendi, guiness would be fab in candy form.

    i've a recipe for champagne lollies but beer? soooo you.

  7. Damn, this looks awesome. And totally easy. Nice one, Ali.

  8. Wendi - ginger beer would be yum. Maybe even add some fresh squeeze/grated ginger to up the gingeriness.

    Angry Asian - champagne lollies sound awesome, too. They would make a cute favor to give out at a New Year's party.

    Liam - thanks :) Although I think you can be quartered in some states for using Hopslam for anything other than drinking.

  9. I could seriously make this RIGHT NOW. So very tempting. Dude I bet these would be killer if made with some Milk Stout(if you can get it, go with Left Hand Brewing CO. they are based out of CO and one of my favorite breweries)! Almost like caramels!

  10. I'll give it a shot with stout and let you know. This is an awesome idea. I'm also thinking a good stout would make mighty fine soft caramels. . .

  11. Definitely try a stout. A nice coffee or chocolate stout. Yummm... Do that and then send me some. ;)

    I think I need to try this, but I'm not so handy with the heating up and cooking of sugar. Any tips?

  12. This is my first visit to your blog. Loving your wit, candor & recipes. This beer candy is genius and that is all there is to it!

  13. Jessi - Left Hand makes some great beer (love Sawtooth and Blackjack Porter.) Milk stout caramels...genius.

    Koshercorvid - thanks for visiting! And please do report back. I'd love to see how the different variations turns out for everyone.

    Jennifurla - just make sure he faints in the opposite direction of the pot. Those candy burns are no joke.

    Stacy A - my first experience with caramelizing sugar was a few years disaster. My best advice: patience and KEEP STIRRING. And when you get a chance, email me your info, Ms. Winner Lady :D

    Marla - thanks Marla, I really appreciate the comment. I just spent some time on your blog. Beautiful pics and styling.

  14. Beer candy?! How cool is that! I want to make some! :)

  15. You might want to look at

    Disclaimer I'm the president of Beercandy Inc.