Monday, December 7, 2009

Divine Violets - Violet Nut Divinity, Take 2

This is my seconds shot at Divinity...
Little did I know, that I would be visiting my grandmother in The Dalles this weekend, so I am going to take advantage of the dry cold of eastern Oregon and try again... Besides, this way she can show me EXACTLY what it is that she does, in case my recipe is missing an instruction or 2. All I can say after this is that my gramma is an expert at divinity (and Almond Roca too). It took all of 13 minutes to make it (as opposed to my 50 minutes to make goo) and it came out perfect. WOW!

I didn't get as many pictures as I would have liked, but I was listening intently to my "instructor". Now I am pretty sure I have the method down. (I will probably try this again) I was doing a couple of things wrong. I had the basics, but she has far more knowledge and finesse than I do when it comes to candy. One of my mistakes is that I did not hand stir, I was placing too much faith in technology and it failed me. Sometimes there is just no replacement for a strong arm, a good wooden spoon, and knowing how something should "feel" when stirring.

So here we go, round 2

Violet Nut Divinity with Gramma

3 cups Granulated Sugar
1/2 cup Corn Syrup
1/2 Cup Water
2 Egg Whites
1/8 tsp Kosher Salt
a pinch of Cream of Tarter
1 tsp Violet extract (or Vanilla extract)
3/4 cup Walnuts, chopped

Separate the egg whites and place them in the bowl of a Oster Kitchen Center fitted with the beater attachments, along with salt and a pinch of Cream of Tarter.
Line to baking sheets with waxed paper and set aside.
Place Sugar, Corn Syrup, and Water in a heavy bottomed saucepan over medium high heat and stir the mixture until it just comes to a boil.

Place the thermometer into the Sugar mixture

and begin beating the egg whites.

When the Thermometer reaches soft ball, pour half the sugar syrup into the egg whites with the mixer running.

Return the syrup to the stove and continue boiling, also leave the mixer running.

Add flavoring to the egg whites and continue beating with the mixer.
When the syrup reached Hard ball, it is time for the second pour.
Pour very carefully, because the egg whites will splatter a little bit before coming back together.

When you have incorporated all of the syrup, stop the mixer, move the bowl from the mixer base to the counter top where your waxed paper lined pans are located and stir with a wooden spoon.
Stir, Stir, Stir, Stir add Walnut pieces and....Stir, Stir, Stir, Stir.... Until the mixture begins to stiffen (don't worry about the shine) and feels kind of like your are stirring Choux Paste after adding the last egg. (That's the best way I know of to try and convey the way the mixture should feel while you are stirring)
With all haste begin scooping out the mixture, by teaspoon, onto your waxed paper lined baking sheets.

Allow to sit for 30 minutes to cool and harden completely.
Store in a Zip-Loc bag inside another air tight container (gramma uses 3 lb coffee cans)

and keep at room temp (the refrigerator is too humid) away from ANY humidity or it will "melt".



Dajana said...

Grandmothers are wondewomen!
I'm glad they came out wonderfully this time. Now, if only I could pop one in my mouth :)))

DDpie said...

Yesssss, grandmas certainly know their stuff and tend to remind us that sometimes doing things "old school" is the way to go. I'm glad she's around to teach you (us) a thing or two! Hugs!

Bob said...

Man, I wish I could cook with my grandma. The cookies look fantastic!

Unknown said...

YEAH for Grandma!!! They look soo good!

Patti T. said...

There can be no better teacher than our grandmothers to teach us the recipes that are our family heritage. I so wish I would have learned more from my grandmother. I am so glad that she was able to help you/us.

Katy ~ said...

Sweet post, no pun intended. My grandma taught me a lot about cooking too. Sometimes you just need that personal how to and there's no one better IMHO than a grandma. Lucky you. You were both blessed by this.