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Three Gourmet Candy Recipes That Will Really Impress Your Friends

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Bringing baked goods like cookies and brownies to parties and get-togethers is pretty common. While people certainly enjoy these items, they can start to feel a bit mundane after a while. If you really want to impress your friends, start bringing homemade, gourmet candy to gatherings. Everyone will enjoy munching on something a bit different, and they're sure to be impressed by your candy-making skills. Here are a few simple, yet decadent recipes to get you started.

Toasted Pecan Turtles

Pecan turtles are a classic, and this recipe has you toast the pecans to really take the flavor to the next level.

Ingredients (for 20 turtles):

  • 40 pecan halves
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 40 soft caramels
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 12 ounces good-quality milk chocolate, chopped finely
  • 1 teaspoon unsalted butter


Spread the pecans out on a baking sheet, and sprinkle them with a salt. Place them in an oven that has been preheated to 350 degrees F. Toast for 10 minutes. Set aside.

Line a second baking sheet with parchment, and give it a gentle coat of non-stick spray. Place the pecans onto this sheet, arranging them in pairs. Leave plenty of space between the pairs of pecans. You may need to use two baking sheets if yours are on the small side.

Place the caramels and heavy cream in a saucepan, and cook over low heat. Stir constantly until the caramel melts. Then, place small spoonfuls of caramel on top of each of the pecan pairs. Try to keep the caramel centered over the pecans.

Fill the bottom portion of a double-boiler with water, and place the chocolate and butter in the upper chamber. Heat the double-boiler over low heat, stirring the chocolate until it is smooth and melted. Spoon the chocolate over the turtles. Try to cover the caramel, but leave part of the pecans poking out.

Let the turtles cool and harden. Peel them off the parchment, and store them in a sealed container.

White Chocolate Peppermint Bark

With its refreshing mint flavor and creamy texture, this candy tastes like it contains a lot more than four ingredients. It's a nice choice for holidays like Valentine's Day and Christmas when the color red is festive.


  • 12 ounces white chocolate, chopped
  • 1 cup crushed candy canes
  • 1 teaspoon peppermint extract
  • 2 teaspoons vegetable shortening


Prepare a baking sheet by lining it with waxed paper. Set it aside.

Fill the bottom of a double-boiler with water, and add the white chocolate and shortening to the top portion. Heat the pan over low heat, stirring constantly. When the chocolate is completely melted, remove the pan from the burner and stir in the candy canes and peppermint extract.

Spread the molten chocolate mixture into the wax paper-lined baking sheet. Try to spread it as thinly as possible. Let the mixture harden completely, and then turn it over. Peel the waxed paper off the back, and then break the peppermint bark into chunks.

Handmade Lemon Drops

These potently flavored candies are wonderful to suck on after a big meal. They have an old-fashioned quality that makes them so charming.


  • 1 cups white sugar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/3 cup light corn syrup
  • 1 teaspoon lemon extract
  • 1 drop yellow food coloring
  • 1 tablespoon powdered sugar


Prepare two baking sheets by greasing them with butter.

In a heavy saucepan, combine the sugar, water and corn syrup. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until the sugar is dissolved. Then, turn the heat down to low. Continue heating, but not stirring, until the mixture reaches 300 degrees F (the hard crack stage) on a candy thermometer.

As soon as the mixture reaches 300 degrees F, remove the pan from the heat and quickly stir in the lemon extract and food coloring. Spread the candy out on one of the buttered baking pans, aiming to create a long rectangle.

Let the candy cool just until it is cool enough to handle. It should feel pliable in your hands. Working quickly, use kitchen shears to snip the candy into small pieces. Drop each piece onto the other buttered pan.

When all of the candy has been snipped, let it cool to room temperature. Then, toss it in the powdered sugar and store it in a sealed container.

For more inspiration, check out a candy shop. You can purchase gourmet candies from  a company like Abdallah Candies And Gifts and try to recreate them.