- 1 cup water
- 1 tablespoon white vinegar
- 2 cups sugar
- 1-1/2 teaspoons peppermint extract
- 1/8 teaspoon red food coloring
- Coat two 9-in. square pans with cooking spray; set aside. (Do not use butter or foil to prepare pans.)
- In a heavy saucepan over medium heat, combine water and vinegar. Add sugar. Cook and stir until sugar is dissolved and mixture comes to a boil, about 8 minutes. (If sugar crystals are present, cover saucepan for 1-1/2 to 2 minutes to allow steam to wash crystals down.) Cook, without stirring, until a candy thermometer reads 300° (hard-crack stage), about 26 minutes.
- Combine peppermint extract and food coloring. Remove syrup from the heat; stir in peppermint mixture until well blended (mixture will bubble up slightly). Immediately and carefully pour into prepared pans (do not scrape saucepan or tilt pans to spread mixture evenly). Cool for 1-1/2 to 2 minutes.
- Using a sharp knife, score candy into 1/2-in.-to 3/4-in.-wide pieces, about 3-in. long. Place both pans in a warm oven(150° or your oven's lowest temperature) for about 5 minutes or until candy is warm enough to cut but cool enough to handle.
- Using a heavy-duty kitchen scissors, cut along scored lines, one piece at a time. Immediately wrap each piece around the handle of a wooden spoon; remove candy and place on waxed paper to harden. Continue cutting and wrapping until mixture in pan begins to harden. Return pan to oven for at least 5 minutes.
- Meanwhile, remove second pan from oven. Cut and wrap as before until mixture begins to harden. Return to oven and repeat with the first pan. Repeat until all mixture is cut and formed into twists. Yield: about 1/2 pound.
Originally published as Hard Candy Peppermint Twists in Taste of Home's Holiday & Celebrations Cookbook Annual 2003, p86
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Reviewed Dec. 10, 2012
"To start off positively, these little twists are absolutely beautiful! They would make a wonderful edible decoration!Now there are a couple of downfalls, though part of that is my fault.Definetely use EXTRACT of peppermint. If you use artificial like I did put a lot more in there.Since I'm no candy specialist (in fact this is the first time I've ever succeeded in hard candy making) I'm not too fast at getting going. I did the full batch (as to the directions) and I found I had to toss 3/4ths of my batch because the sugar got all colluded and the candy was cloudy. As it turns out the longer you leave it in the oven the more brittle it becomes (duh) so I could only get 1/4 of this batch into cute little ribbons. To solve this problem I suggest making smaller batches or speeding up!The taste isn't too bad. But again, definetely use extract. It needed more mint.Overall, I would make these again! Great recipe!"