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Hokey Pokey – Nigella Lawson


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Hokey pokey, as far as I knew, was just a song. However, I have learned that hokey pokey is also a candy, with a recipe popularized by Nigella Lawson.

Hokey Pokey is also a key ingredient of Minko’s cupcake for Groom 2.5 (read Cupcake Love Connection to see what this is all about). If she wanted to put Groom 2.5 in the mood, it worked! When he heard the name “hokey pokey,” he got a giant grin on his face. “You put it in, you put it out.” That’s what it’s all about!

Did Groom 2.5 Like the Hokey Pokey?

Sadly, it turned out that Groom 2.5 did not like the hokey pokey. It had the consistency of brittle, which he does not like. But do not fear, love will conquer all. When the hokey pokey was put in the “Do the Hokey Pokey Cupcake,” the texture was completely different and he didn’t mind it at all.

Hokey Pokey by Nigella Lawson

Below you’ll find Nigella Lawson’s hokey pokey recipe as sent to me by Minko.

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Hokey Pokey – Nigella Lawson

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 4 tbs golden [dark corn] syrup
  • 1 1/2 tsp bi carb [baking] soda

Instructions

  1. Put the sugar and syrup into a saucepan and stir together to mix. You can't stir once the pan's on the heat.
  2. Place the pan on the heat and let the mixture first melt and then turn to goo and then a bubbling mass the color of maple syrup - this will take 3 minutes or so.
  3. Off the heat, whisk in the baking soda and watch the syrup turn into a whooshing cloud of aerated pale gold. Turn this immediately onto a piece of baking parchment or greased foil.
  4. Leave until set and then bash at it, so that it splinters into many glinting pieces.

Recipe Notes

Warning (see pics at bottom of this post):

What makes it work:

The recipe works better if you use 3 T of corn syrup rather than 4.
You need to wait. Do not touch the mixture in the pot for even longer than the 3 minutes the recipe recommends. I waited about 6 minutes the second time. It will look like it is starting to burn.
Don't spread the mixture after you pour it on the parchment - just pour it and leave it.

 

When I followed the recipe the first time, I ended up with this:

No bashing at it would make it shatter. It was a dentist’s nightmare – super sticky, stretchy candy.

I did a bit of research and came across Pennypincher’s Pantry. Pennypincher had made Nigella’s hokey pokey recipe and had about 50 comments from people, many of whom had made the recipe multiple times before getting it to work. I read all the comments and tried again (see the notes section of this recipe). It worked perfectly!

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