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Turn up your sugar high with jellos and candies

Indians love their sweets. But with changing times we have started experimenting with western sweets and candies. Summer vacation outside the country is bound to bring in bounties of jello, lollipops, candies, marshmallows and more. The treats not just entice kids but also grown-ups with a sweet tooth.  

The tradition of making candies and lollipops has been a part of Indian culture. Our grandmothers used to preserve seasonal fruits throughout the year by turning juicy fruits to delicious candies and pops.   

Here are a few recipes of some traditional and some experimental jello, lollipops and candies. They are sure to take anybody back to their childhood days.  

Blueberry and Orange Jello

Cook time: 20 mins + setting time 

Makes12-15 pieces 

Type: Sweet 

Ingredients: 

Blueberry1 cup (about 200 grams) 

Orange juice: 2 cups 

Sugar: ¼ cup 

Agar-agar powder: ¼ cup 

Method: 

  1. Take a jello mould and freeze it. A frozen mould accelerates the setting process. 
  2. Chop the blueberries finely.
  3. Take a bowl and mix orange juice and sugar. Put this on heat and warm it up. Stir continuously. When the juice is warm add in the berries and stir well. Cook for 2-3 minutes. Add the agar-agar powder and stir well immediately. Cook the jello for 4-5 minutes till it is thick. Ensure to stir continuously otherwise lumps would be formed.
  4. Cool this mixture for 10 minutes. 
  5. Pour the jello in moulds and leave it in the refrigerator to set. 
  6. It takes a couple of hours to set well. It is ideal to leave it in the fridge overnight. 
  7. Enjoy the fruity chewy goodness. 

Tips: 

You can use gelatine instead of agar-agar. Gelatine needs to be soaked before using. 

The gelling capacity of Agar-agar reduces when it comes in contact with any raw fruit. So ensure to cook the fruit well before adding agar-agar powder. 

One can use plain orange juice instead of spiced orange juice.  

 

Watermelon And Mint Jello

Cook time: 20 mins + setting time 

Makes: 12-15 pieces 

Type: Sweet 

Ingredients: 

Watermelon: 1 piece 

Mint leaves: a handful 

Sugar: ¼ cup 

Agar-agar: ¼ cup 

Method: 

  1. Chop the watermelon and deseed it. 
  2. Clean and wash 8-10 mint leaves and chop them finely.
  3. Take a blender and blend the watermelon and the mint leaves. Pass the juice through a sieve.
  4. Take a couple of cups of the juice to make the jello.
  5. Heat up the juice and sugar. Add the agar-agar powder and stir well.
  6. Stir of low flame for 8-10 minutes or till it thickens up.
  7. Pour and set them in moulds. 
  8. Though jellies set at room temperature, it is always a good practice to set them in the fridge. Setting in the fridge needs at least 2 hours or ideally overnight.  

Tip: A pinch of red colour can also be added. 

Caramel Popcorn Lollipop  

Cook time: 30-35 mins + setting time 

Makes: 10 pieces 

Type: Sweet 

Ingredients for caramel popcorn:  

Instant un-popped popcorn: ¼ cup 

Brown sugar: ½ cup 

Honey: ¼ cup 

Salt: ½ tsp 

Butter: ½ cup 

Baking soda: 1 tsp 

Ingredients for lollipop:  

Brown sugar: 1 cup  

Water: ¼ cup  

Pancake syrup¼ cup 

Caramel popcorn powdered: ½ cup 

Method: 

  1. Take a heavy bottom pan with a lid and pop the popcorns as directed in the packet.
  2. To prepare the caramel, take a pan and melt in the butter. Add sugar and leave it on low flame for some time till the sugar melts. Ensure the sugar does not burn or crystallize. Add in honey, salt and butter. Stir well. Take the pan off the heat and add in the baking soda. It will froth up. Mix well to have an even colouration. 
  3. Pour the caramel sauce over the popcorn and mix the popcorn well till all are coated well and evenly. Caramel popcorn is ready.
  4. To make the lollipops, prepare a silicon mould by placing lollipop sticks.
  5. Take some caramel popcorn and powder them in a mixer. Sieve them to get a fine powder. Use ½ cup of the fine caramel popcorn powder for the lollipop. 
  6. Take a pan and heat up sugar, water and pancake syrup. Boil them on low flame till the sugar melts.
  7. This would take 7-10 minutes. 
  8. Take a bowl with some water and put a drop of the boiling sugar into the water. If it hardens, the syrup is ready.
  9. Once ready, stir in the caramel popcorn powder.
  10. Pour the sticky and mouth-watering golden syrup in the lollipop mould. Ensure to prepare the mould before starting. 
  11. Leave it to set and enjoy. 

Green Apple And Cinnamon Lollipop 

Cook time: 30 mins + setting time 

Makes: 15-20 pieces 

Type: Sweet 

Ingredients: 

Green Apple: 3 

Sugar: 2 cups 

Honey: 1 cup 

Unsalted Butter: 1 tbsp 

Cinnamon: 2 x 1-inch 

Green apple essence: 1 tsp 

Green colour: a drop 

Method: 

  1. Take a lollipop mould and place lollipop sticks in it. 
  2. Chop the apples and blend them well. Pass the juice through a sieve. The green apple juice is ready to use. 
  3. In a pan heat sugar with 1 cup of water and let it melt. Keep an eye so that the sugar does not burn or crystallise. This takes about 8-10 minutes.
  4. To check if the syrup is ready, drop some in a bowl of water. If the syrup hardens the melted sugar is ready to use.
  5. In another pan boil the green apple juice, honey, butter and cinnamon simultaneously and on a slow flame. Let it boil and reduce for 10 minutes. It should yield about ¾ -1 cup.
  6. Pour this cinnamon-infused juice into the prepared sugar syrup. Stir well.
  7. Add the essence and green colour.
  8. The lollipop molten goodness is ready to be poured and set in the moulds. 

Tip: You can combine blue and yellow colour to get a green colour. 

Gooseberry Candy

Cook time: 40-50 mins + drying time 

Makes: 400 grams (approx.)  

Type: Sweet 

Ingredients: 

Gooseberry (Amla): 500 grams 

Sugar: 2 cups 

Honey: 1 cup 

Green Cardamom: 2-3 

Clove: 2-3 

Saffron: a pinch 

Black Salt: 1 tsp 

Method: 

  1. Wash Indian Gooseberries and make 4-5 vertical incisions till the seed. 
  2. Boil them for 5-7 minutes. This allows the segments to separate from the seed. Drain well and discard the seeds. 
  3. Take a pan and put sugar, 1 cup water, honey, cardamom and cloves. Bring it to a boil. Add the gooseberry segments and simmer for 30 minutes. The syrup should be gooey and sticky. I
  4. the syrup is still watery, simmer for some more time.
  5. At this stage stir in the saffron and black salt. 
  6. Grease a tray or take a silicon mould to dry the candies. 
  7. With a spoon, take out the gooseberry segments and put them on the tray or silicone mould. Leave it to dry. They dry faster in summers than in winters. Leaving them in the sun dries them even faster.  

Tip: The gooseberry segments can be boiled in the sugar syrup for a longer duration in one day or can be boiled for a shorter duration for 2-3 days. 

Guava Candy  

Cook time: 40-50 mins + drying time 

Makes: 400 grams (approx.)  

Type: Sweet 

Ingredients: 

Guava: 500 grams 

Sugar: 2 cups 

Lemon juice: 1 tbsp 

Spiced guava juice: 1 cup 

Desiccated coconut: ¼ cup 

Method: 

  1. Wash and cut the guavas into big chunks (use guava with small seeds.) 
  2. Take a pan and bring sugar and ½ cup water to a boil. Add in the lemon juice. Mix well and then add in the guava juice and the guava pieces. Let them simmer for 30 minutes. The syrup should be gooey and sticky. If the syrup is still watery, simmer for some more time.
  3. Take out the fruit candy and let it dry on a wire rack.
  4. Once cooled and semi-dried, sprinkle desiccated coconut onto it and coat them well. Leave them for a couple of days to dry. They are then ready to be popped in. 

Tip: If the seeds are big, then guavas can be boiled in the syrup for 10 minutes and passed through a sieve to remove the seeds. The candy can be made with the fruits pulp. Once the syrup dries and the whole thing comes together, it can be set in a tray and cut into pieces. These candies can then be rolled over desiccated coconut. 

Colourful sweets are always an attraction. Though indulgence is always an option, that’s best left to the kids. Adults can indulge in them occasionally or daily but with restrain.  

 

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