Make this classic hard-boiled lolly in traditional red and white or any colour you fancy. 






Skill level

Average: 3.4 (42 votes)


440 g (2 cups) caster sugar
1 tsp cream of tartar
1 tsp peppermint essence
green or red food colouring

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


You will need a heatproof silicon baking mat. If toffee starts to harden before you can shape it, place in oven preheated to 120°C to soften.

Standing time: 3 minutes
Setting time: 10 minutes

Place sugar, cream of tartar, peppermint essence and 160 ml water in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir to dissolve sugar, then bring to the boil and cook for 8 minutes or until mixture reaches 126˚C on a sugar thermometer.

Remove from heat and quickly pour half the toffee onto a well-oiled oven tray and set aside. Pour remaining toffee onto a heatproof silicon baking mat and stand for 3 minutes to cool.

Add drops of food colouring onto toffee on mat and fold mat so sugar begins to form a ball and becomes shiny and pliable and evenly coloured; this will take about 3 minutes.

Roll into a log, then pull and stretch ends to about a 20 cm-long log. Repeat process with reserved toffee, pulling and stretching until white and about a 20 cm-long log.

Working quickly, place logs on top of each other, then pull and stretch them together to combine the colours. Reshape into a log. Using scissors or a knife, cut into 2 cm lengths.

Using your hands, gently shape into discs, then place on a lined oven tray and allow to set. Store in a cool, dry place for up to 3 weeks. If humid, store in refrigerator.

As seen in Feast Magazine, Issue 17, pg58.

Photography by Dieu Tan