Make Your Own Hand-Pulled Cotton Candy
This recipe came from a blog called A Little Zaftig, where you can find beautiful step by step photos of the process as well as some great tips to ensure success.
This is another one of those recipes that must be read all the way through a couple of times before you set out to make it. A Little Zaftig makes it look really easy, and it is - as long as you pay attention to the details. I'm including the proportions included in A Little Zaftig here but again, I only made half the batch. One full batch makes enough for 4 people to pull and each fourth makes a mound big enough for 4 people to eat from - it's a lot.
4 1/3 cups sugar
2 cups water
1 teaspoon vinegar
scant 1/2 cup corn syrup
1 drop food coloring - optional
cornstarch for working the candy
Also, you must have a candy thermometer.
It's essential that you go through the original post, as my photos don't do it justice. There is also a great hand pulled cotton candy youtube video that demonstrates the entire process.
After boiling the ingredients to 268° and not any higher, the solution is left in the pan to cool to 212° and not any lower. It is then poured into plastic quart sized containers and left to cool to room temp. The disc is popped out (getting the disc out can be quite tricky) and pulled into a ring.
The ring is stretched and pulled, then doubled over.
The same process is repeated over and over again until the entire thing resembles powdery strings.
If you eat the candy right way, it becomes kind of a hard candy again in your mouth, but the next day it's much more powdery and cotton candy-like.