A few weeks ago I was browsing my Facebook feed when something caught my eye. Yuri, who writes Chef Pandita posted a link to a gourmet lollipop shop that sells many unusual flavors – including a Sriracha pop!
Like! I clicked. “I would totally try this!” I commented, to which she replied “You should come up with a recipe and blog about it, why not?!” I declared her a genius and got out my recipe journal.
For those unfamiliar, Sriracha is a delicious sweet-hot chili sauce that is (in my opinion) highly addictive. I’ve always thought it could improve the flavor of just about anything, but I wasn’t sure how it would translate into candy.
I gave it a try in spite of my doubts. The first batch failed because I used too much sauce. The candy didn’t harden properly and when I tasted it my eyes watered. Definitely too much!
I was more conservative the second time around and struck a nice balance between sweet and hot. It’s just hot enough to make your tongue tingle and has the recognizable flavor of the beloved rooster sauce.
One thing I’d like to address about making hard candy – you must have good candy thermometer. The last time I posted lollipops, so many people had burned candy it made me question my recipe. I even took the recipe down from the site until I had made it three more times successfully. For this reason I’m including a few important tips.
Check the accuracy of your thermometer – You can check your candy thermometer accuracy by placing it in water and bringing the water to a boil. The thermometer should read 212° F, if the reading is higher or lower, take the difference into account when testing the temperature of your sugar syrup.
Don’t have a thermometer? I use a Taylor TruTemp digital thermometer with an alarm, almost identical to thismodel. I no longer use a thermometer that clips to the side of the pan because of inconsistent results. If the right clip model comes around and changes my mind, you’ll be the first to know.
Plan ahead – have candy molds, spoons, pot holders, and other tools ready to hand. You must work quickly and efficiently when working with hard candy. Being organized will also help decrease the risk of burning your candy -and yourself!
Burned candy–Your candy can take on a burned flavor if it is heated beyond the hard crack stage 310°F. You can remove the liquid candy from the heat once your thermometer registers 300 degrees F., allow the temperature to rise on its own for the last 10 degrees.
I really love how these turned out – right down to the faceted lollipop mold I used (you can buy it here if you love it too). I can definitely say these lollipops won’t be for everyone, but if you’re feeling adventurous or know a fellow rooster sauce enthusiast -give them a try!
Edit: A commenter has pointed out that Sriracha pops are the brainchild of Jason at Lollyphile. I don’t know Jason, but I’m happy to give the guy credit. This particular recipe is my own.
Yield: 12-17 Lollipops [click for printable recipe]
2 cups sugar
2/3 cup corn syrup
2/3 cup water
2 tablespoons Sriracha sauce, divided
1/4- 1/2 tsp. orange gel food coloring
- Lightly grease candy mold with cooking spray.
- Stir together the sugar, corn syrup, and water in a small saucepan and insert a candy thermometer into the mixture.
- Bring the mixture to a boil over medium high heat. Continue to heat without stirring until the bubbling mixture reaches 244°F. Drop one level tbsp. Sriracha sauce into the bubbling mixture– do not stir! When the mixture reaches the hard crack stage (302-310°F). Remove pan from heat.
- Stir in the remaining 1 tbsp. Sriracha sauce and food coloring. Be extra careful because the mixture will bubble and sputter with these additions.
- When the mixture has stopped bubbling, pour it into molds and let harden.
- Wrap the cooled lollipops in cellophane or wax paper and store in an airtight container.