The Joys of Candy Corn

20091022-candycornpile

Candy Corn Pylons from Diabetik, Flickr

Well it’s Halloween here in Ontario and we all know what that means…bags and bags of candy corn are gracing the store shelves! MMMMM It seems from doing my research for this post that there are two kinds of reactions to the mention of candy corn:  mmmmmmm or YUCK!!!  Candy corn seems to truly be one of those love it or hate it kind of things.  I, as I am sure you have already figured out, fall on the side of the LOVE IT people but it is incredibly sweet and even I can’t eat more than just a little bit (something my waistline and teeth thank me for).    Candy corn is so popular that October 30th has even been declared as National Candy Corn Day in the US.  Despite its many sugary ingredients and sweet sweet taste, a cup of candy corn actually has fewer calories than a cup of raisins so indulge away! 

Candy corn has been around since the 1880’s.  It was originally invented and produced by George Renninger, an employee of the Wunderlee Candy Co and then later by the Goelitz Brothers Candy Company, which later became the Jelly Belly Candy Company.  (yes those Jelly Bellies…more mmmm).  In early days, candy corn was only available seasonally.  It apparently was produced from March to November but I know that in my area it was (and often still is) only available from September to just after Halloween.  (When I lived in the US, it was available longer…usually right up through their Thanksgiving).  Now with the advanced machinery they have, the company is able to produce candy corn in a variety of seasonal colours throughout the year at a rate of approximately 25,200-40,000 pounds per hour.The main ingredients in candy corn are fondant (which is comprised of about 20% sugar and 80% corn syrup), and marshmallow (which helps it to retain its shape).  Each of the three colours are produced separately and then done layer by layer from orange to white.  Back in its early days, this layering process was all done by hand, pressing the layers into moulds that had been dusted with cornstarch.  Want a more detailed description of the production process?  Check one of these out:  http://recipes.howstuffworks.com/candy-corn.htm    http://candydishblog.com/2009/10/20/candy-science-tuesday-candy-corn-and-starch-molding/  Apparently there is a video from The Food Network showing the candy corn production process but I can’t add it here as it says I am unable to access due to the fact I live in Canada.  Perhaps you will have better luck! 😉  http://www.seriouseats.com/2008/10/in-videos-how-candy-corn-is-made-goelitz-factory.html

This site has a list (and recipes) of 10 things to do with your candy corn from candy corn popcorn cakes to adding them as sweetener in your coffee and tea to adding them to your Chex mix and your apple pie recipe and more!  http://www.fox4kc.com/lifestyle/holiday/sns-halloween-candy-corn-ideas,0,7740621.story  One of the ideas I really want to try is their idea for adding candy corn to baked apples ( just use your favourite baked apple recipe and add about a dozen pieces of candy corn to each apple).    Prefer to make your own candy corn?  Here ya go!  http://candydishblog.com/2009/10/21/make-your-own-candy-corn/ (for a recipe) or if you prefer a step by step tutorial:

Some great links to check out for more candy corn fun!

Skip to my Lou (I HIGHLY recommend this blog!) has a collection of ideas for candy corn themed foods and drinks which could make the basis for a really rad candy corn themed party!  http://www.skiptomylou.org/2009/10/26/yummy-candy-corn-themed-ideas/

Living Locurto (another of my favourite blogs) has this adorable candy corn treat bag and tag printable:  http://www.livinglocurto.com/2008/09/halloween-candy-corn-bag-tag-printables/

This candy corn Halloween bracelet is easy to make and just adorable! http://www.favecrafts.com/Halloween-Crafts/Candy-Corn-Halloween-Bracelet#

I found a tutorial on Youtube for applying your eye makeup in a way inspired by candy corn but honestly I didn’t think it had any relation to candy corn whatsoever.  Instead, I offer for your viewing pleasure, how to paint your nails in candy corn fashion!

How about this thoroughly adorable candy corn hat pattern?  http://reeniewhirled.blogspot.com/2008/09/candy-corn-yarn-and-free-hat-pattern.html

A tutorial for a really adorable candy corn mini-book   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=toNqVeV13Qc

Making candy corn out of polymer clay (use it for jewellery or as embellishments on other projects)  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E7PKDaTUNf0&feature=related

And lastly, if you enjoy the bizarre humour of Mr. Bill from the old Saturday Night Live show, I leave you with this offering…Candy Corn Man!

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