“It is dull, Son of Adam, to drink without eating,” said the Queen presently. “What would you like best to eat?”
“Turkish Delight, please, your Majesty,” said Edmund.
“The Queen let another drop fall from her bottle onto the snow, and instantly there appeared a round box, tied with green silk ribbon, which, when opened, turned out to contain several pounds of the best Turkish Delight. Each piece was sweet and light to the very center and Edmund had never tasted anything more delicious. He was quite warm now, and very comfortable.” –C. S. Lewis; The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe
We’ve been working our way through the Chronicles of Narnia in our daily read aloud and when we read about Turkish Delight, Edmund’s ill-fated dessert request of the White Witch, my children were left licking their lips and imagining some delectable treat. A delectable treat they had never heard of.
Nope. Never. You won’t find it on the dessert buffet at your local Golden Corral. And at our church dinners, where you’ll usually find a bigger selection of pies, cakes, puddings, and cookies in one place than you’ll ever see anywhere else, never once have I seen a plate of Turkish Delight.
“So, Mom,” my children asked me, “what is Turkish Delight?”
Turkish Delight is just a candy gel made of starch and sugar and coated in, well, more starch and sugar! It originated in Turkey and in the 19th century made its way to Great Britain where it grew in popularity under its present name. It’s still a relatively common confection across southwest Asia and Europe and some Americanized versions are available in the U.S.
True Turkish Delight, however, isn’t generally something I can pick up at the local Kroger store, so I suggested to the kids we try making our own! Naturally, they were ecstatic about the idea!
Of course, I do not have the best personal record where candy-making is concerned, so I was a little apprehensive about trying this, but then I found a microwave recipe that looked incredible easy. Exactly what I needed!
2 1/2 cups cold water
3/4 cup cornstarch, plus 1/2 cup for dusting candy
3 cups sugar
1/4 cup light corn syrup
1 T. pure lemon extract (Not lemon juice, mind you, but REAL lemon extract or else you need a lot more than a tablespoon, which could ruin the consistency of your candy.)
2 drops red liquid food coloring
1/2 cup powdered sugar
Pour the water into a 2-quart glass bowl. Whisk in the 3/4 cup cornstarch, a little at a time, mixing until fully dissolved. Microwave mixture for 2 minutes, then whisk smooth.