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Brittles, Barks, & Bonbons    by Charity Ferreira order for
Brittles, Barks, & Bonbons
by Charity Ferreira
Order:  USA  Can
Chronicle, 2008 (2008)

Read an Excerpt

* * *   Reviewed by Belle Dessler

When I was growing up, the best part about Halloween wasn't the name-brand candy I got when I went out trick-or-treating. It was the homemade candy my mother always made the weekend before Halloween. I remember sitting at the kitchen table, watching her dip a candy thermometer into a pot, and smelling the delicious, mouthwatering scent of burnt sugar.

Brittles, Barks & Bonbons took me back to that kitchen table. In this pretty, hardcover book, Ferreira has assembled 'a collection of the candy I love to make, eat and share.' I know there are those among you who think making candy is hard work, but Ferreira's instructions make it seem effortless. She takes the time to walk us through a variety of ingredients we'll encounter when making candy, then talks about the equipment needed, so we're prepared for anything candy-making might throw at us (you do have a candy thermometer, don't you?) Ferreira also provides a wealth of candy tips and techniques before diving into the recipes, which are a sugar-lover's dream.

She begins with Brittles and Toffees, where you'll find instructions for making Spanish Almond Brittle and Coconut-Peanut Toffee, among others. If Barks and Clusters are more your style, look no further than the recipes for Rocky Road Bark and Sea Turtles (made with salted caramels). And what would candy-making be without recipes for Truffles and Chocolate-Dipped Candies? Ferreira thoughtfully includes recipes for Mexican Chocolate Truffles, Chocolate Covered Graham Crackers and Chocolate-Dipped Candied Citrus Peel. She ends on another sweet note with Bonbons and Other Sweetmeats, like homemade Butterscotch Caramels and Toffee Popcorn with Cashews.

Full-color photographs accompany many of the sumptuous recipes, adding to the mouthwatering quality of each type of candy. With Halloween just around the corner, consider starting your own homemade candy tradition. Kids may never look at store-bought candy the same way again.

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