[Sca-cooks] Pulled Sugar Penydes was SCA 50th Anniversary Challenge

Phil Troy / G. Tacitus Adamantius adamantius1 at verizon.net
Tue Jul 22 18:58:52 PDT 2008

On Jul 22, 2008, at 8:53 PM, Georgia Foster wrote:

> Here is the source I am comparing
> Taffy
> 2 cups sugar
> small piece butter
> 1/2 teacup vinegar
> 1/2 teacup water
> Boil until it will harden in water.  Poru into a butter tin.  When  
> cool enough to pull add 1 teaspoonfull of lemon or any desired  
> flavor.  The longer it is pulled the better it will be.
> attributed to Grandma Huston, Daniel, (WY)

from BL MS Harl. 2378:

"To make penydes. Tak a lb. suger (th) is noght clarefyed but euen  
colde wth water wythowten (th) whyte of a egge for if it were  
clarefyed wyth (the) white of a egg it would be clammy. And (th)an put  
it in a panne and sette it on (th)e fyre and gar it boyle, and whan it  
is sothen inow asay betwyx (th)i fyngers and (th)i thombe and if it  
wax styfe and perte lightly fro (th)i fynger (th)an it is enow: but  
loke (th)ou stere it but lityl wyth (th)i spatur in hys decoccioun,  
for it will benyme hys drawyng. And whan it is so sothen loke (th)ou  
haue redy a marbyll stone. Anoynte it wyth swetemete oyle as thyne as  
it may be anoynted and (th)an pour (th)i suger (th)eron euen as it  
comes fro (th)e fyre sethyng. Cast it on (th)e stone wythouten any  
sterynge, and whan it is a litel colde medel hem togedyr wyth bothe  
(y)oure handes and draw it on a hoke of eren til it be faire and  
white. And (th)an haue redy a faire clothe on a borde, and cast on  
(th)e clothe a litell floure of ryse, and (th)an throw owte (th)i  
penydes in (th)e thyknes of a thombe with (th)i handes as longe as  
(th)ei will reche, and (th)an kut (th)em wyth a pere scherys on (th)e  
clothe, ilk a pese as mychell as a smale ynche, and (th)an put (th)em  
in a cofyn and put (th)em in a warme place, and (th)an (th)e warmnesse  
schall put away away (th)e towghnesse: but loke (y)e mak (th)em no(y)t  
in no moyste weder nor in no reyne."

Rough translation for those as needs:

To make penydes. Take a pound of sugar that is not clarified, but just  
cold with water, without the white of an egg, for if it were clarified  
it would be clammy. And then put it in a pan and set it on the fire  
and let it boil, and when it is boiled enough test it between your  
fingers and thumb, and if it grows stiff and parts easily from your  
fingers it is ready: but be careful not to stir it too much with your  
spatula while boiling, for it will inhibit the pulling process. When  
it is boiled enough have ready in advance a marble stone, coated as  
thinly as possible with confectioner's oil [N.B. other recipes  
generally call for almond oil here], and then pour your sugar onto it  
as it comes from the fire boiling. Pour it on the stone without any  
stirring, and when it has cooled slightly, mix it together with both  
your hands and hang and pull it from an iron hook [on the wall???]  
till it is fair and white. and then have ready a clean cloth on a  
board, and cast on the cloth a little rice flour, and then throw out  
your penydes in the thickness of your thumb with your hands as long as  
they will reach, and then cut them with a pair of shears on the cloth,  
in pieces an inch long, and then put them in a box and put them in a  
warm place, and the warmth will reduce the toughness, but be sure not  
to make them in damp or rainy weather.

I get the impression this is boiled to not-quite hard crack, so it can  
easily be pulled fully before it starts to break. The end product  
would then be less brittle, and more tough and sticky, than it would  
otherwise be, but you then give it a chance to dry out (in a warm, dry  
environment) after coating it with rice flour and forming the candies...



"Most men worry about their own bellies, and other people's souls,  
when we all ought to worry about our own souls, and other people's  
			-- Rabbi Israel Salanter

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