Sunday, March 26, 2006

PULLED SUGAR

2 lbs. lump-sugar 1 tablespoonful glucose

1/2 pint (1 cup) water 1/4 teaspoonful cream of tartar

Put the sugar and water in a saucepan, and set in a warm place to dissolve. When thoroughly dissolved place on the fire, add the glucose and the cream of tartar, boil as quickly as possible to 312°, and remove at once from the stove. Dip the pan into cold water to stop the boiling. Pour the syrup on a lightly oiled slab, and as the edges cool, turn them on to the center of the sugar, using a knife to lift them.

When the sugar is cool enough to handle, roll it into a ball and pull with the fingers from the two sides, turning the ends over from side to side and into the center.

Be careful that all parts are equally pulled. Very soon the sugar will take on a white sheen and become whiter and whiter. Care should be taken that it does not become too cold. While shaping the pulled sugar into fancy forms, it should be pulled near the heat of an oven or in front of a batch warmer, and it should not be overheated. It should not be worked too hot, otherwise it loses its glossy appearance. Flowers made with pulled sugar are very effective in appearance. To retain their gloss, it is necessary to keep them in an air-tight glass case.

To make a pulled sugar rose pull a piece of sugar with the thumb and forefinger of the right hand, and break this off short. Shape the piece round and with a thin edge; press this in the center, and fold over to bring the thin edges almost together to represent the center of a rose just beginning to open. Pull some leaves and arrange three or four of them slightly higher than the bud, and outside of these fasten a few others as required.

Fasten the lower parts of the petals so as to leave the outer edge standing out from the bud. The stems of the roses are pulled out from the sugar, and cut off according to the size desired, with scissors, and then fixed together. A real flower should be employed as a pattern. To make the flowers more effective green pulled sugar leaves arc necessary. It is sometimes necessary to cut the sugar with a pair of scissors to the desired shape. The basket shown in the photograph is made by weaving lengths of pulled sugar around wooden skewers, which are fixed upright in a thick piece of board. Special prepared stands or boards can be made, on which upright sticks of sugar have been fastened.

It is necessary to work near to the batch warmer or the oven. Pull out pieces of the sugar about twenty inches long and as thick as a large lead-pencil, and twist this round the sticks or skewers as in basket-making. Continue this operation until the wicker-work reaches within an inch of the top. Place the basket on a prepared base of sugar. Fasten in small sticks of sugar to replace those removed. Make the handle with a piece of twisted sugar, and decorate with flowers, leaves, twists, and ribbon bows all made with the same material. The sugar for the handle should be twisted over a piece of wire. The flowers and stems should be heated and fastened to the handle with the aid of a warm, pointed knife.

Pulled sugar is often used in conjunction with spun sugar and nougats. Sugar is pulled to produce a bright sheen and to make it very crisp to eat.

Pulled sugar may be colored and flavored to taste.

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