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Tuesday, January 19, 2010

A Snowflake is Winter's Butterfly

I love that quote!

 In that spirit, I decided to make my own snowflakes out of  poured sugar- Isomalt- to be more specific.


The supplies I used were 1 cup of Isomalt crystals, a small saucepan, a rubber snowflake mold, a spoon, non-stick spray and a small bowl of ice water ( in case of burn injury!)


Isomalt is interesting. I had used it once before and learned quickly about its properities ( idiosyncrasies, if you will) at about 3am in the morning before a 9am scheduled cake delivery! Having waded through a barrage of mistakes, making the snowflakes on this go round was a bit easier.

I started by spraying a rubber snowflake mold ( the kind used to make maple candy ) with non-stick spray.
Then I dabbed the inside of the molds with a paper towel to make sure there was no puddling of the spray anywhere. This is important! Any pooling of the nonstick spray will literally sizzle and cook when you pour the Isomalt on it and you will have to discard your candy. I know this for a fact. :-(


Then I poured about a cup (or so- I didn't measure) of Isomalt into a stainless steel saucepan. I put my candy thermometer in place and, without adding water, began heating the crystals over low heat; stirring as it began to melt down.


Once melted, the sugar begans to heat quickly and before you even notice it is boiling, the candy thermomter will register 356 F or 180 C.


Isomalt heats very quickly. Do not turn your back on it. Do not blink!
However, it is more forgiving than sugar because it maintains its clear properties as it approaches the hard crack stage of cooking, whereas sugar turns a nice amber color.



Quickly remove from heat and with spoon, carefully ladle into the mold. Watch your hands as you do this to avoid burning yourself on the pan. ( Ask me how I know )

Wait until the candy snowflakes completely harden. Pull the mold away from the snowflakes.

 For more definition, I brushed some with SuperPearl edible dust or sprinkled with edible disco dust for sparkle.



There you have it. Easy Poured Sugar Snowflakes!
Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!!

13 comments:

  1. I love this Jacque!! They are so pretty! I love your molds too! And it's a wonderful tutorial!!

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  2. Wow... this is so cool. Never tried to make anything with this isomalt before.
    And I must agree with your quote...
    Thanks for showing how you made this snow flakes.

    Elin xx

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  3. Thank you for this tutorial. I wasn't sure how to use isomalt, but it seems simple enough. Beautiful work!

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  4. Thanks so much for the tutorial! I've never tried with isomalt yet..maybe i should soon!

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  5. these are such beautiful little snowflakes. Thanks for sharing it with us!!

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  6. Thank you for your comments! I hope you have fun making snowflakes inside your warm and comfy kitchen!! Stay warm...and wishes for a happy winter!

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  7. thanks a bunch for the tutorial,may i ask where u purchased the snowflake mold?

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  8. The link in the tutorial discussing the maple candy molds
    (http://www.maplemadness.com/maple_candy.html)
    is very similar to the one I used.

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  9. Thank you for this helpful information. I need help with a recent project. I would like to pour a sugar centerpiece using a mold. My main issues are the following: its a kind of large mould (about 8 by 11 by 9 inches)so do I need to worry about how fast the sugar cools? Also, its to accompany a wedding cake so I need to finish it about a week in advance but I am worried about how to store it away from humid conditions. Also,if I am just pouring it into a mold, do I need to use isomalt or if I use casting sugar do I need to add tartaric acid? And last, how do I get the sugar to stay crystal clear and not develop a yellow caramalized color?
    Thank you so much for your help!

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  10. I cannot address some of your questions because I have never made a poured sugar project in that large size. However from judging the nature of isomalt when I used it, there would be no problem pouring a larger piece as it heats to a very high heat.
    I have used sugar, but when I heated it to hard crack stage, it turned amber. So if you want to attain a crystal clear product, I recommend using Isomalt.

    I have the snowflakes that I made in January and they are still crystal clear. But since everyone lives in differing climates, I recommend that you try it out ahead of time and see if it maintains its clarity. I do this always before any project if I am unsure of the outcome.

    Here is a link to a blog that I found on the internet. They used isomalt for a larger pour glass project. You may find their experience useful.
    http://images.doitmyself.org/seasons_love/sugarplates.php

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  11. love the snow flakes have a wedding cake to do in October want to use sugar to make hearts for the cake but I want them to be hollow and lacey I have heart molds would I be able to use this sugar and drizzle inside the molds to get the effect I want

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  12. Not having tried it, I wouldn't be able to advise you other than to say that you will probably have to experiment ahead of time to see if you get the effect you are wanting to achieve.

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  13. Hi...maybe you can answer a question for me. I tried making isomalt coral which I was totally happy with until several hours later.. It started turning (I think) back into crystal form. What did I do wrong or how do I make it not do that?

    Thanks.

    ReplyDelete

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