Serious Eats: Recipes

Homemade Conversation Hearts

[Photographs: Sarah Jane Sanders]

Sprite gives the candies a faint acidity that helps them taste like the real thing, and to that same end I've made suggestions for how to flavor each color to match the classic flavor line up. But don't hesitate to experiment! No doubt you'll think of all sorts of fun, alternative flavor pairings limited only by the extracts or freeze dried fruits you can get your hands on.

I don't provide measurements for the food colorings, as the quantity needed varies from brand to brand, but as a general rule: easy does it! It takes only a tiny amount of gel paste or a drop of liquid coloring to get the colors just right.

If you can get a few pairs of disposable gloves, you'll save yourself a lot of hand washing and the annoyance of trying to knead the candy inside a plastic bag or between sheets of food wrap.

Note: All measurements are in weights, as volume measures can be very imprecise. I strongly recommend using a scale for all pastry projects. Serious Eats' recommended kitchen scale is the Oxo Good Grips Scale with Pull Out Display.

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