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The Liddabit Sweets Candy Cookbook: How to Make Truly Scrumptious Candy in Your Own Kitchen! Paperback – October 9, 2012

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Workman Publishing Company (October 9, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0761166459
  • ISBN-13: 978-0761166450
  • Product Dimensions: 7.1 x 0.8 x 9.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (52 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #61,988 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews Review

Featured Recipe: PB&J Cups

Cookie Dough Ice Pops

This is a fancified version of the childhood favorite. While some people might say, "Why put jam in a peanut butter cup?," we say, "Why on earth not?" Liz made a version of these when she first started working at Roni-Sue’s Chocolates--a celebrated little chocolate shop on the Lower East Side of Manhattan--and was surprised at how popular they were... until our PB&J candy bar was born. But that’s a horse of a different color. For now, these make lovely gifts that are sure to please--and note that the peanut butter is interchangeable with an equal amount of almond butter, or any other nut butter that tickles your fancy.

Makes about 100 bite-size candies

Special Equipment
  • Heatproof spatula
  • 3 plastic piping bags or gallon-size zip-top bags
  • Kitchen scissors
  • 100 small foil candy cups
  • 2 large (13" x 18") rimmed baking sheets, lined with parchment or wax paper
Ingredients for the Peanut Butter Filling
  • 7 1/2 ounces (225 g) white chocolate, chopped (about 1 1/4 cups)
  • 1/4 cup (60 g) heavy (whipping) cream
  • 1 tablespoon (25 g) light corn syrup
  • 3/4 cup (135 g) creamy commercial peanut butter, such as Skippy
  • 1 teaspoon (5 g) kosher salt
Ingredients for the Chocolate Cups and Garnish
  • 4 cups (26 ounces/740 g) chopped dark chocolate, or 4 cups (26 ounces/740 g) chopped dark chocolate and 2/3 cup(150 g) mild vegetable oil
  • 2/3 cup (175 g) seedless raspberry jam
  • Maldon sea salt or fleur de sel

1. Make the peanut butter filling: In a medium-size microwave-safe bowl, microwave the white chocolate in 15-second intervals, stirring between each with the heatproof spatuala, until it has softened to the touch (it doesn’t need to be melted). (Alternatively, soften it in a bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water.) Set aside.

2. Combine the cream and corn syrup in a small (1-quart) saucepan, and cook over medium heat until the mixture is steaming and bubbles are just starting to form around the edge. Remove the pan from the heat and pour the cream mixture over the white chocolate. Allow it to sit for 1 minute; then stir with the spatula until all the white chocolate is melted and the mixture is smooth.

3. Stir in the peanut butter and kosher salt. Transfer the filling to the piping bag and snip a hole 1/2 inch from the tip; set it aside in a bowl.

4. Make the chocolate for lining the cups: Temper the 4 cups chocolate according to the instructions on page 26, or use the 4 cups chocolate and 2/3 cup oil to make Cheater’s Chocolate Coating as directed on page 32. Transfer the prepared chocolate to a piping bag and snip a hole 1/4 inch from the tip; set it aside in a bowl.

5. Set half of the foil cups on one of the prepared baking sheets. Working with 10 cups at a time, pipe the chocolate into the cups, filling them halfway. Then, starting with the first cup, tilt each cup to coat the inside completely, and pour the excess chocolate back into the bowl. Turn the coated cups upside down on the baking sheet and let them stand for 30 seconds. Turn the cups right side up and transfer them to the second baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining foil cups. Allow the coated cups to set until the chocolate is firm, 10 minutes.

6. When the peanut butter filling is no longer warm but still pipes easily, pipe it into each cup to fill it about halfway. (If the peanut butter filling hardens slightly, microwave the bag on High for 3 to 5 seconds and knead it thoroughly. Or place the piping bag in a bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water and gently knead it after 30 seconds. Repeat as needed until the mixture pipes easily.)

7. Fill the remaining piping bag with the jam and snip a hole 1/2-inch from the tip. Pipe a generous 1/2 teaspoon of jam over the filling in each cup, being careful to avoid getting jam on the rim (which will prevent the top layer of chocolate from properly adhering to the cup).

8. Pipe the remaining chocolate on top of the jam to fill each cup completely. Tap the bottom of each cup gently against the baking sheet to level the chocolate. Top with a few flakes of Maldon salt. Let the filled cups stand until firm to the touch, about 15 minutes.

Store the PB&J Cups in an airtight container for up to 1 week.

Download a PDF of this recipe.

About the Author

Liz Gutman and Jen King became friends while attending the French Culinary Institute’s pastry program. Sharing a passion for locally produced, superior-quality ingredients and a love for (okay, obsession with) sweets, they opened Liddabit Sweets in 2009. They both live, eat, and dream in sugar in Brooklyn, New York.

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Customer Reviews

The instructions are straightforward and easy to follow.
This book is a fun read - some great info, lots of humor, and I noted 17 recipes I want to try (which is pretty good for ANY cookbook).
Baker & Candy maker
I've tried at least ten recipes from this book and they've all turned out very well - exactly as expected!
Rowena Walker

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

39 of 40 people found the following review helpful By Courtney Dove on December 23, 2012
Format: Paperback
I was super excited when I treated myself to this book. I've been to pastry school and have worked as a pastry cook professionally, but I never spent much time with candy. I thought the inspiring and elegant-seeming recipes in this book would be a fun project to work my way through. Alas it's been a nightmare. All 4 recipes I've tried so far have been failures. I've had to make a lot of adjustments to salvage wayward messes of expensive chocolate and other beautiful ingredients.

The Dorie bars sounded so perfect and unusual. There's something wrong with the recipe for the cookie base, though (I suspect the butter measurement is off; i played with the proportions and finally got something good) and altogether the bars just seemed too sweet and clunky. I'm not a fan of the recommended tempering method either; although it seems super helpful at first read, it ends up feeling imprecise as you're working with it. The mint chocolate meltaways were another confusing situation. I was skeptical of adding a healthy dose of sea salt to my mint chocolates, but I just trusted that the authors wouldn't lead me astray. I'm a HUGE fan of salty sweet / salted chocolate in general, but these were just bizarrely salty. Combined with mint, the salt gives this confection a taste like chocolate baking soda toothpaste or something. It was strange.

I love these ladies' beautiful ideas, but I'm dissatisfied with my results. I've wasted over $50 in Callebaut chocolate alone because of their unreliable instructions. As a previous reviewer pointed out, there are a number of typos throughout the book, which doesn't make me feel confident that there aren't similar mistakes in the recipes themselves. This book has made me realize how much goes into making a great cookbook.
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61 of 66 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on October 14, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I've had this book almost two weeks now, and recommend it very highly, with only a few reservations. I think where this book excels is in interesting and innovative flavors. If you are bored by the basics and really want to tease your palate, this book is an excellent choice.

The reservations? Minor for most, I think, but beginners may find them helpful. First, the quantities are huge. HUGE. I rarely want 50 of the same truffle, and don't often want to have to buy and temper that much chocolate. Tempering chocolate is the hardest part to master (you can totally master it, and their instructions are pretty darned good), so it would have been very helpful to also give instructions on coating candies (truffles, really) with things like cocoa, nuts, and cereals. Moderately experienced candy makers know this, but the book seems to be directed at passionate beginners.

I don't think these points should stop you from considering this book, as it really is a fun and well-written book. Just know what you are getting. (It's worth buying just for the fig & ricotta and beer & pretzel caramel recipes. Mmmmm.)

Another great book to consider buying alongside this one is Elizabeth LaBau's book on candy making. Similarly inventive flavors, with a different approach to tempering chocolate and finishing truffles.

I had to change my rating from 4 stars to 3 after testing a couple more recipes. I've found quite a few typos in this book, which I find VERY aggravating. The English measurements seem to be ok (cups, etc), but weights are off. The chocolate chews and caramels both call for 300g corn syrup by weight, but different amounts when using cups. My chews came out WAY too soft, and my caramels made half the amount specified and the texture was like hard candies.
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15 of 18 people found the following review helpful By KtMeyers on October 3, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I've been anticipating getting this book for a little while - so when it arrived yesterday, I was pretty thrilled (and no, not just because my UPS guy is pretty cute).

This candy cookbook makes sense - it doesn't just explain the "how" of making candy, it explains the "why" of making candy. For example - unlike other cookbooks that I own, that give a couple of sentences to tempering chocolate, this one gives over ten pages. And, it's complete with color glossy photos of how the chocolate should and should not look. There are another ten pages about how to cook sugar to it's different stages - and again, the pictures and exact descriptions are great. I also love that when a recipe tells you to bring something to a certain stage, it also tells you about how long it should take so that you can adjust your heat accordingly - this is a great detail.

Chapters are broken up by types of candy, like chocolates, creamy, crispety crunchety, and bar candies. There's also a helpful chart at the beginning that tells you which candies are vegan, gluten-free, dairy free, as well as which are great to gift, easy to ship, or good to make with kids. Also, if a recipe calls for an ingredient or a tool that's out of the ordinary, there's always a reference to where you can purchase it.

This is exactly what I wanted in a cookbook. It really emphasizes that cooking and candy-making should be fun, and that you're going to end up with a product that's so much better than anything that's mass produced. I look forward to making these recipes, and staining the book with chocolate, sugar syrup, and nougat.
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The Liddabit Sweets Candy Cookbook: How to Make Truly Scrumptious Candy in Your Own Kitchen!
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