Pulled Sugar for Dummies

Discussion in 'Pastries & Baking' started by chefron, Jun 30, 1999.

  1. chefron

    chefron

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    Is there a resource out there (book, video) that details pulling sugar for the completely inept? Is it really true that I'm going to lose all my fingerprints handling this stuff? I'd like to play with it at home when I get off work; where can I buy the items necessary for pulled sugar?

    Also, how practical is pulled sugar really? I mean, in terms of professional skill, is it an essential part of the craft of the pastry chef or is it merely an aside that is rarely used in a professional setting?
     
  2. m brown

    m brown

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    granulated sugar
    water
    acid
    those are the basic ingredients
    boil to a temp of hard ball
    pour out on lightly oiled surface
    work with a bench scraper
    when cool enough to handle with rubber gloves
    pull to a satiny shine
    under heat lamp pull shapes and cool
    Notter, look up this name, he and wife are best I have seen. They have books and classes.
    Also, try Paris Gourmet, they have sugars with stablizers for pullling, pouring and forming.
    this is tricky stuff, I suggest a class or two with someone who knows their stuff.
    good luck
     
  3. cakerookie

    cakerookie

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    Well M Brown covered most of what you need. As far as books go there are several The Professional Pastry Chef and The Advanced Professional Pastry Chef both by Bo Friberg. As far as it being a necessary part of a pastry chefs repotoire I don't know. Ewald Notter has one but the book is about $100.00.Most chefs do not take the time to learn this art because it takes years just to become proficient at it. Then you have to consider Isomalt or granulated sugar? I can post a recipe for the pulled sugar but it is using granulated sugar not Isomalt. Here is an equipment run down for:

    1). A Professional Candy Thermometer. (The most important piece of equip!)
    2). A stainless steel pot or copper pot.
    3). A marble slab or silpat, or cookie sheet.(Marble and cookie sheet have to be greased with vegetable oil.)
    4).A heat lamp 250 watts
    5). A warming box
    6). A metal spatula or metal dough cutter.
    7). A hair dryer with a warm and cool setting
    8). Rubber gloves. (You will get blisters from this stuff!)
    9). A rubber bulb pump or air pump.(I use a bulb pump from an old blood pressure cuff.)
    10). A metal or wooden tube. I use a metal tube. Make sure it will fit into the end of your rubber hose on your pump.
    11). A pastry brush dedicated solely for sugar work!

    I know I have left something out but don't know what it is. As far as purchasing the equipment I would make most of what you can because you can find most of it at hardware stores.

    I can post the recipe for using granulated sugar I do not have one for Isomalt. You can also try Albert Usters or Chef Rubber.com if you would like to shop around.
     
  4. panini

    panini

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    Good list. I would also add some source of flame for glueing. Small torch or alcohol burner. A pair of heavy scissors. Gloves are pretty cheap. Maybe some modeling clay. I use a pet hair dryer with cool air.
     
  5. cakerookie

    cakerookie

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    See I told you I left something out. Thanks Pan.
     
  6. cakerookie

    cakerookie

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    Well I promised it so here it is:

    Boiled Sugar Recipe

    32 oz (2 pounds granulated sugar)
    16 oz (2 Cups water)
    8 oz (1 Cup glucose or light corn syrup)
    2 Level Teaspoons Cream of Tartar

    Before starting fill your sink full of cold water.

    Bring sugar and water to a boil over low heat stirring constantly until the sugar has dissolved. When the water comes to a boil stop stirring and do not stir anymore after this.Add your candy thermometer at this point.And raise the heat to medium.

    With a pastry brush and and warm water constantly wash down the sides of the pan. This prevents sugar crystals from forming and getting into your sugar mixture. These crystals could cause your mixture to recrystallize later.

    When the temperature reaches 285F add the glucose or light corn syrup and the cream of tartar dissolved in a tablespoon or two of water.Continue cooking to 305F.

    Remove from the heat and allow the bubbles to subside then plunge your pan into the sink full of cold water for 10 seconds make sure the water comes half way up the sides of the pan. Dry the sides and bottom of the pan well after removing it from the sink do not want that water in your sugar mixture!

    Now you can pour it out onto a greased marble slab or cookie sheet or silpat. Silpats do not have to be greased but I have found it is easier if they have a light coat of vegetable oil on them.

    Begin turning the outer edges of the sugar toward the center of the mass.Continue doing this all the way around the edges and moving the sugar around this hastens cooling.As soon as the sugar is cool enough to handle pick it up and begin pulling it. As you pull double it and pull agian. I would not pull it more than 20 times as over pulling will cause recrystallization.The sugar will take on a silky sheen.

    At this point you place it under your heat lamp until ready for use.

    This recipe has gone through various developmental stages. Thanks to CHrose and Panini here on ChefTalk I have been able to continue to perfect this recipe cause those guys really know their sugar!
     
  7. foodpump

    foodpump

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    If you're casting and want to use modeling dough, use Plasticene, available at art stores. Don't use the cheap kiddies stuff, it can't handle the heat. Also if there's a metal shop nearby, get yourself some 3/8 s/s square bars, in various lengths. These, combined with the plasticene will give you any shape you want. You can get the "bubble effect" by spraying/brushing 70%rubbing alcohol on to the casting mat before casting the sugar.

    Casting is much more straightforward and less time consuming than pulling and blowing. This makes it ideal for larger pieces for bufffets, etc, on short notice.
     
  8. cakerookie

    cakerookie

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    Foodpump, whats this bubbling effect you are talking about. Sounds good. By 70% alcohol are you talking about regular rubbing alcohol? What about rum or vodka would that work?
     
  9. foodpump

    foodpump

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    Regular rubbing alcohol, the stuff you get at a drugstore. Brush it or mist it on silicone paper or a sil-pat just before you cast. As the hot sugar hits it, the alcohol evaporates and the surrounding sugar bubbles up, neat effect.
    Booze is maybe 40 % (or 80 proof in the US, don't ask me why...) and won't work, besides, rubbing alcohol is cheaper....
     
  10. cakerookie

    cakerookie

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    I totally agree with that. I am going to have to put that away in my notes and try it one day.
     
  11. ducky

    ducky

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  12. foodpump

    foodpump

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    I've got Fassbind's book, also a Swiss husband/wife team, called "Sugar Artikel" Good colour photos, and text in German, English, French, and Spanish. Don't have an airbrush, too expensive, but I've noticed that Wilton now has mini-spray bombs of food colouring....
     
  13. cakerookie

    cakerookie

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    Ewald and Susan Notter have one called "The Textbook of Sugar Pouring and Pulling" but it like everything else is expensive to about $100 from a bookstore in England off of E-Bay.
     
  14. ducky

    ducky

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    For an airbrush,check out some of the smaller Badger airbrushes. With the half off Michael's craft store coupon, mine ran $16. No compressor, works with canned air. Haven't tried it out yet, but got the tip from someone else that says Norman Love suggested them in a demo for working with colored cocoa butter.
     
  15. panini

    panini

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    duck.
    You will need a single action with a larger orifice for the cocoa butter, which yours probably is.
    Use the can in small blasts. Longer sprays will make the can cold or freeze.
    If you are looking at pumps, spend the extra money and get one with a holding tank. Much smoother action.
     
  16. cakerookie

    cakerookie

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    You can use a Wagner Power Painter to spray chocolate. I know this has nothing to do with cocoa butter. Use the power painter with an adjustable nozzle and make sure it has not been used for painting best buy it new. You can make templates and lay them over plates or something to make beautiful presentations. Just rattling on.
     
  17. ducky

    ducky

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    Wagner power painter is on my wish list.
     
  18. cakerookie

    cakerookie

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    ducky if you can get a hold of a copy of The Advanced Professional Pastry Chef or The Professional Pastry Chef it has a few good templates in it.
     
  19. ducky

    ducky

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    Cool! :cool: Thanks! I need to go through all the craft stencils I own and see what I have to work with. I remember picking up some really cool large asian themed pieces at the last rubber stampers convention if I can remember where I put them.
     
  20. sugarartist

    sugarartist

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    Can't boil water
    In the recipe for pulled sugar, what is the purpose of the cream of tartar?

    Thank you in advance to anyone that replies. This is my first posting.