Chitty Chitty Bang Bang – 1968
“ice cream, lollipops and all free today”
For once the stuff of nightmares referred to in the title isn’t the mangling of an English accent by Dick van Dyke. After the Mary Poppins fiasco of 1964 he subsequently played any role thankfully in his native accent. No the terror I’m alluding to is one I can recall myself as a 4 year old girl in the Sutton ABC cinema. My Mum had quite rightly thought that in those days before DVD and Sky movies a trip to the pictures would be fun, this new children’s movie would fit the bill perfectly. What she hadn’t factored in was The Childcatcher!
For weeks after we went to the movie I didn’t sleep, was afraid of anyone new and point blank refused to eat lollipops! A healthy distrust of strangers is a good thing but a fear of sweets, good grief, I’m glad I got over that one. You will be too . Diana Henry gave a recipe for lollipops in The Sunday Telegraph a while back and this is my slightly souped up version.
Mise en scene
Makes about 15 large lollies
100g frozen soft fruit (I used some of last years blackberries)
or 125 ml of any fruit juice
250g granulated sugar
2 tsp liquid glucose
lolly sticks and wrappers (I got mine from the local cake supply shop)
small but heavy based pan
It’s all in the edit
- Sniff the air, there are children around you can smell them. better get some treats made!
- Place a sheet of the paper onto a work surface. Fill your sink with cold water.
- (if using just juice skip this stage) Put the frozen fruit into a pan and add 6 tbsp of water. Heat gently until the fruit releases it’s juices. Pass through a sieve, pressing gently to extract as much juice and flavour as possible.
- You should have about 125 ml of juice. Place the juice in the heavy bottomed pan and add the sugar and liquid glucose. heat gently at first to dissolve the sugar and then more rapidly. Use the thermometer to monitor the temperature.
- Once the sugary mix reaches 147 (hard crack) put the base of the pan into the cold water to stop the cooking.
- Spoon 15 large dollops of the mix onto the parchment, allow to cool slightly, and then add a lolly stick and a sprinkle of glitter. You may need a little more mixture to cover the top of the lolly stick.
- Whilst waiting for the sweets to cool you could put on your best Halloween costume to scare your nearest and dearest, that way they won’t want the sweets and you can have them all to yourselves!
- Wrap and enjoy.
If you don’t want lollies this mixture makes boiled sweets too. Sadly I have yet to perfect the Caractacus Potts recipe for Toot sweets!