Daring Cooks’ May 2015 Challenge - Turkish Delight

Brinkmanship. Starting your Daring Cooks challenge with 3hrs to go until the posting deadline. Certainly not a triumph of forward planning!

Almost at the magic 127C
However, I did, and it's done (sort of). Technically it's not finished but in project management speak I'm classing it as "substantially complete".

Blog-checking lines:  For the Month of May, Rachael from Pizzarossa challenged us to make candy but not just any candy!
She challenged us to make Turkish Delight, or Lokum.

So I'd better up-front with my confession - I hate Turkish delight. That might have something to do with my slowness in getting around to tackling the challenge - that and a crazy busy time at work.

Cherries and pistachios to add some texture and flavour
And before anyone suggests it, my hatred was not because I'd not tried "real" Turkish delight. Yup - tried it, in Istanbul, still hated it. Admittedly marginally less than the Fry's variety, however still at the bottom of my confectionery ranking.

Cornstarch gloop
However, Mr E loves Turkish delight - so I'm hoping that he'll take this offering into his work and dispatch with it.

I ended up making 2 batches - the first one turned out OK in the end, but the sugar caramelised too much before I added the cornstarch, so it was golden. I didn't add the fruit I'd been planning, in case it was a burnt disaster, but instead  mixed in half a teaspoon of cola flavour, which I thought might complement the caramel under tones.

Caramel cola - will it set… yes!
The second batch I switched to a smaller pan, which seemed to make the difference - I added pistachios, glade cherries and a couple of drops each of rosewater and vanilla.

Batch 2 underway - just like very sweet wallpaper paste
Keep your fingers crossed that it sets / cuts tomorrow!

If nothing else, I achieved a good cherry / pistachio distribution!
Thanks for pushing me out of my comfort (and taste) zone ;o)

PS - it's dairy free and vegan - and the recipe here on the Daring Kitchen website is very thorough and easy to follow