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Taffy Pull

Prior to the 1960ís it was often popular at many children's birthdays and holiday parties to have a Taffy Pull.  This can still be a fun and unusual addition to a special event.  This is also a good activity to add to a study of childrenís games or holiday activities, or in any study where homemade sweets would prove a nice addition.  Taffy pulls were often used in colonial and pioneer days as a form of courtship Ö all that hand holding donít you know. 

Iíve even had a few taffy pulls my scouts and with my own children, they truly enjoy them Ö both creating the taffy and then eating their creations.  Sometimes the results will vary in consistency depending on the humidity. 

1 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar
2 cups molasses
3/4 cup water
1/4 cup butter (best flavor) or margarine
1/8 tsp soda
1/4 tsp salt
2 drops of peppermint oil (optional) or vanilla*

1. Put sugars, molasses and water in a large pan, stir until sugar is dissolved.
2. Turn heat on and boil the sugar syrup until a candy thermometer registers 265 degree Fahrenheit.
3. Cook the syrup slowly, stirring frequently to prevent burning.
4. Remove from the stove and add the butter, the soda, the salt and the flavoring.
5. Stir ONLY enough to mix.
6. Pour candy out onto greased platters or shallow pans to cool.
7. When the candy begins to stiffen at the edges, form the mass into a ball (you can use a spatula or butter knife).
8. Pick it up with you buttered hands and pull between the thumbs and fingertips.
9.  Continue until the candy is light colored. Then stretch into a long rope not larger than one inch in diameter.
10. Twist before cutting into pieces with scissors. Pieces should be fairly small.
11. If you donít eat the candy right away, wrap it in waxed paper.

*Although peppermint and vanilla or the flavorings added most often, you could leave the taffy plain or use other flavorings such as strawberry, rootbeer, licorice, anise, cherry, orange, etc.  These flavorings can be purchased at your grocery store, usually near the herbs and spices section.


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