Candy for Christmas

It’s almost Christmas, and I’ve been rushed off my feet, too busy to make Christmas candy, but since The Correct Art of Candy-Making arrived in the mail yesterday, I thought I’d better share some recipes!  The classic, of course, is candy canes, so I’ll start with the recipe for them.


Candy Canes

Mix four cupfuls of granulated sugar in a pint of water and three tablespoonfuls of glucose.  Boil, and when nearly done add a large tablespoonful of butter.  When the candy will crack on being pulled apart, pour it out to cool.  Flavour as preferred, and pull thoroughly, and draw it out to the size the canes are desired to be.  Cut this strip into pieces about a foot long, roll these on a slab until smooth and even, turn them over at one end in can fashion, and place in a cold room.  If striped canes are desired, take small portions from the warm mass and colour them any shade desired.  Then draw these coloured portions out into coarse but regularly shaped stripes, and imbed them lengthwise in the roll of candy, drawing them down with it, so that they diminish in size accordingly, until in the finished stick they appear as delicate stripes.  A slight twist is generally given just before cutting off.

Marrow bones, I think, seem quite similar to the chicken bones candy my late Great Auntie Jerry loved.  They are made as follows.

Marrow Bone

This confection is made in imitation of a bone filled with marrow.  The bone is made from pulled molasses candy, and the marrow is of cream or fondant.  After the molasses candy has been pulled to a very light colour, lay it flat on your marble or board, and spread it out to about an inch in thickness.  Make the edges even, and you are ready for the “marrow.”  Now take the fondant which should have been made the day previous, and roll it into a long, round mass. Place this directly in the center of the rolled candy, and wrap the sides of the latter over it.  You should take the precaution to have just enough fondant for the molasses candy to cover without the edges lapping over.  Now stand the roll on end and gently pinch the edges of the candy over the cream or fondant; this is done so that the cream cannot run out.  Roll gently before a fire, then pull the whole mass out into a long stick about an inch in diameter.  Be sure you keep it rolling all the time, and by a warm fire.  After it is all pulled out, roll until cold and then cup up into sticks and wrap them in waxed paper.

And old-fashioned Christmas wouldn’t be complete, of course, without popcorn in some form.  Around the turn of the last century popcorn balls and other popcorn candies seem to have been popular.  These recipes sound like they would be delicious!

Recipes for popcorn balls, cakes and candy.


The Correct Art of Candy-Making was published by the Butterick Publishing Co in September 1899 as part of their Metropolitan Pamphlet Series.  It covers all areas of candy making from the equipment and techniques, to a wide array of candy types, from taffies, caramels, and cream candies, to pralines and gum drops, and many more besides.  It also has a section on making lovely – and maybe a little quirky – little boxed for storing and gifting your confections.  As always, if you try any of the recipes I’ve shared here, please comment with your results!


  1. What a wonderful post. I saw some words I didn’t recognize. Glucose (unless it’s just sugar, saltspoonful, and French cream. Are those from the 1800’s?

    I love that it is possible to make candy canes. I had no idea. 😊😊 Bet that would be a fun afternoon. The house would smell divine!


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