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Candy

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A shelf filled with candies

Candy is often used as a synonym for the more general term confectionery in North America, whereas the word has become archaic in most parts of the United Kingdom and survives today almost exclusively in the term "candy floss". In some areas, notably Scotland, "candy" is generally taken to mean confectionery made from crystallized sugar, whereas a piece of confectionery is referred to as a "sweet". In Australian English, all such confectionaries are collectively referred to as lollies.

Candies are prepared by dissolving sugar in water or milk to form a syrup, and boiling it until it starts to caramelize. Depending on the solvent and the end result of the process, the product may be called candy, caramel, toffee, fudge, praline, or tablet. The recipe used also predicts how hard, soft, chewy or brittle the end result should be.

The eventual texture of candy depends on the temperature to which the sugar solution is boiled, since the presence of a solute in a liquid tends to elevate the boiling point of the liquid. Increasing the sugar content will also raise the boiling point. As the syrup is heated, it boils, which causes the sugar concentration in the syrup to increase due to evaporation of the water, which raises the boiling point even further. The relationship between the boiling point and the sugar concentration is predictable, and so heating the syrup to a particular temperature ensures a particular sugar concentration with some accuracy. In general, higher temperatures — which imply greater sugar concentrations — result in hard, brittle candies, and lower temperatures result in softer candies. These "stages" of cooking candy have been named and correlated with the cooking temperatures, and is frequently specified in recipes:

  • "thread": 230-233°F / 128°C
  • "soft-ball": 234-240°F / 132°C
  • "firm-ball": 244-248°F / 137°C
  • "hard-ball": 250-266°F / 143°C
  • "soft-crack": 270-290°F / 156°C
  • "hard-crack": 295-310°F / 168°C

List of types of candy

External links

es:Caramelo nl:Snoep ja:キャンディ sv:Godis

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