While I was playing with beeswax the other day – I came across this recipe for Hokey Pokey. I’ve never made caramel .. even less something that aerates – all a bit Heston Blumethal for me. But it seemed easy enough and didn’t require a machine or thermometer …. and it was curiosity week. So I thought I would give it a try.
Apart from being a little dance we used to do as kids (“You put your right foot in, you put your right foot out, you put your right foot in and shake it all about …. etc), Hokey Pokey is a Cornish term for honeycomb. The crispy golden crunch that makes up the middle of a … crunchie. Which, for my American friends, is a candy that traveled with the British Empire and is known to children and dentists wherever the Union Jack flew. When I was a kid we used to see if we could eat all the chocolate off the outside and then let the honey centre melt on our tongue – and stick to our teeth. Made a fortune for the myriad dentists the Wildish Family have known over the years.
It is easy to make but you must have everything prepped and ready to go before you start. No hurtling around the kitchen with boiling caramel in your hands. No last minute grabbing of parchment paper. The science happens the minute you add the bicarb – and you will have no time to do anyting but whisk and pour. These quantities make a nice billow. Eat as is or trickle some dark chocolate over the top and you’ve got the perfect adult treat. Or in my case – breakfast item with coffee.
Golden Chocolate Covered Honeycomb
- 100 grams/½cup caster sugar (I used superfine and it melted quickly)
- 60ml4 tablespoons golden syrup (I used Maple flavoured which made it smell delicious)
- 1½ teaspoons bicarbonate of soda (measure this out before you use it – you will have no time to be dipping back into the container)
- 100g/1 regular bar dark chocolate – I used dark as it offsets the sweetness of the Hokey Pokey – but use milk choc if you prefer!
Method: (nb to have everything prepped/measured out and ready to go.)
- Put the sugar and syrup into a saucepan and stir together to mix well.
- Important: once the pan is on the heat – do not stir.
- Place the pan on the heat and let the mixture first melt, then turn to a gooey mass and then to bubbling lava the colour of maple syrup. DO NOT STIR! This will take 3 minutes or so.
- Turn off the heat, whisk in the bicarbonate of soda and watch the syrup turn into a cloud of aerated pale gold.
- Turn this immediately onto a piece of baking parchment or greased foil.
- Leave until set – 20 mins or so.
- Separate home made ‘crunchie’ from baking parchment or greased foil
- Chop into bite size pieces – just need a thickish sharp knife – no hammer neccessary.
- Break 100g/oz dark chocolate (I used 70%) into smallish pieces and place in metal or glass bowl over a pot of simmering water
- Melt slowly – then pour over the cooled/set honeycomb.
- Put in fridge to set – takes about an hour.
Brew a pot of coffee. Sit somewhere quiet… and indulge. Now, that’s what it’s all about. If you have any left – remember to store it in an airtight container – as it will draw moisture from the air and go soggy. And there’s nothing good about soggy when you’re doing the Hokey Pokey.
(All images copyright campari&sofa)