about 4 dozen

How to Make It

Step 1

Combine sugar and water in a large saucepan; bring to a boil, and add butter. Cover and cook over high heat 5 minutes. Uncover and continue cooking until mixture reaches hard ball stage (260°). Remove from heat, and immediately pour syrup onto a buttered marble slab.

Step 2

Sprinkle oil of peppermint and food coloring over surface of hot syrup; let rest 5 minutes. Begin scraping syrup with metal spatulas into a central mass. Continue scraping and folding until coloring is evenly distributed throughout syrup.

Step 3

Pull mixture with fingertips, allowing a spread of about 18 inches between hands; fold mixture in half. Repeat this motion rhythmically until consistency of mixture changes from sticky to elastic and glistening.

Step 4

Begin twisting while folding and pulling. Continue pulling until ridges on the twists begin to hold their shape. This takes 5 to 20 minutes, depending on the weather and your skill.

Step 5

Shape mint mixture into a 1- inch-thick rope. Using kitchen shears, cut the rope into 1 1/2- inch segments. Twist, pull, and form each segment into desired shapes. Place mints on a wire rack to cool, and cover with a linen towel. Let mints sit overnight or until they become creamy. Wrap mints individually in aluminum foil or place in a sealed container to prevent drying.

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