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Sweet Confections: Beautiful Candy to Make at Home Paperback – Sep 6 2011

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Lark Crafts; 1 edition (Sept. 6 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1600599206
  • ISBN-13: 978-1600599200
  • Product Dimensions: 1.3 x 21.6 x 25.4 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 544 g
  • Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #657,180 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description


"Cookie dough fudge? This book has it. A sweet-and-salty smorgasbord? This book has it. It also has big, glossy images and plenty of step-by-steps to guide you to sweet success. Author Nina Wanat has packed this book with easy-to-make recipes and intriguing flavor combinations." —Sprinkle Bakes
"Sweet Confections: Beautiful Candy to Make at Home demystifies the apparently not-so-tricky world of candymaking. Author Nina Wanat, chocolatier and owner of BonBonBar Confections, combines her knowledge with the stunning photography of Diane Cu and Todd Porter, aka White on Rice, to guide us through making candy at home...Wanat promises candymaking is 'easy and within your reach,' and leads us confidently through all the basic ingredients, tools, and how-tos, including how to temper chocolate, cook sugar, roll truffles, and more. Every concern is covered, even for novices (To stir, or not to stir?), and the step-by-step photographs serve as a vital guide." —Craft Gossip
“Nina provides a wonderful overview of all the basic candy making ingredients as well as the tools and techniques needed to create these scrumptious treats. Step-by-step directions and mouthwatering photography make it a fun challenge deciding on which recipe to try out first.” —Delish Magazine
“Nina Wanat makes candy-making into a delightfully delicious art form in her cookbook, Sweet Confections: Beautiful Candy to Make at Home…From brittles and lollipops to caramels and taffies, as well as marshmallows and truffles, this cookbook has all of the types of candy that you'd ever want to make. They're classy enough for holidays and parties, but also perfect for regular days and nights around the house...My favorite part about this book (besides all of the wonderful photos) has to be the first section of the book that's solely devoted to candy-making tips, tricks, and simple how-to's. I really appreciate the fact that Nina Wanat, the author, took the time to break down a lot of the special techniques and procedures that are important in candy-making, such as how to dip candies and caramelize sugar. Thanks to that section of the book, I know exactly what she's talking about in the recipes when she mentions a certain technique or ingredient.” —

About the Author

Nina Wanat is the founder and chief chocolatier of Bay Area based BonBonBar Confections LLC, a thriving confectionary specializing in handmade, artisan candies with an emphasis on natural ingredients. Nina attended the Culinary Institute of America at Greystone for its Baking & Pastry Program, and she maintains a blog, Sweet Napa (, that chronicles her life and adventures in candymaking.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) HASH(0xa23629fc) out of 5 stars 22 reviews
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa1be015c) out of 5 stars Divinely Delectable Oct. 19 2011
By Star Child - Published on
Format: Paperback
I won this book in a contest and was very excited to see it waiting for me today. I immediately opened my package and devoured (pun intended?) it. I took a confectionery class in college and reading her tips and instructions brought so many things back. It is easy to understand and instructions are clear and precise. The recipes are amazing. Some things I have done before like marshmallows and caramel. Plus the Fudge recipes are the traditional Old Fashioned Fudge which is harder to find. Most people opt for the easier recipes that use white chocolate chips or marshmallows. While Old Fashioned Fudge is more temperamental, when it is done right it achieves a smoothness and flavor profile that is above its more common cousin. Consequently seeing those recipes added, in my opinion, to the validity and taste of the author, Nina Wanat. I honestly think anyone, with a little patience, could pick this book up and be successful. One of the nice things about this book is it is organized with easier recipe categories first. It starts with your hard crack lollipops and progresses into the more difficult fudge or truffle. The illustrations are both beautiful and informative. It really is a must have for the novice and seasoned candy maker.
14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa1be01b0) out of 5 stars A great addition to my shelf! Oct. 17 2011
By Manda Williams - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I was sad to hear that Bonbonbar, Nina Wanat's candy business, was closing its doors, because she made the best caramels I have ever tasted. But, if I can't order the caramels anymore, I at least could get her caramel recipe here in Sweet Confections!

Candies (and chocolate) have their own requirements and rules, and I'd been meaning to get a specialized cookbook for a while. Not only does this book have a good range of recipes, but there is a great section at the front about candymaking in general, with well-illustrated instructions for caramelizing sugar and tempering chocolate.

Having enjoyed Nina's confections before, I had confidence for the caramel and chocolate recipes, but there is quite a lot territory in the book that Bonbonbar did not cover. I was intrigued by the recipe for applesauce jellies, and decided to whip up a batch. I expected something with basic apple flavor, probably similar to Applets&Cotlets, that my young niece and nephews would enjoy... but what I got was tender jellies with lovely caramel-apple aroma. Highly addictive. I can't wait to try some of the other recipes!
14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa1be048c) out of 5 stars Gorgeous candy! Sept. 21 2011
By Hello Happy - Published on
Format: Paperback
Sweet Confections: Beautiful Candy to Make at Home gives us the opportunity to make our favorite candies (plus new concoctions) right at home! Candy making can be a little trickier than making cookies, but many of the recipes have just a few ingredients and are fairly simple, as long as you own a candy thermometer! Sweet Confections is filled not only with real candy recipes, but tons of eye candy as well!

The author refers to candy as being "the most gem-like of foods" with its jewel-toned colors and the absolutely gorgeous photography by the very talented couple from the White on Rice Couple blog does so well at featuring each glorious piece. In case you are new to creating your own candies, there are step-by-step photos that teach how to temper chocolate, dipping and rolling candies, and how to correctly cook sugar.

There are sections for Crunchy, Chewy or Silky candy. New takes on classics, like the Pumpkin Caramels (so perfect for Fall), the Sour Cream Candied Nuts, or Strawberry Lemonade Marshmallows are excellent additions. Crystallized pansies and rose petals, white and lavender meringues (which would be fun to color to match with different holidays) or the vibrantly colored Jelly Candies are stunning to look at. And, if you are a chocolate lover, then you may enjoy the Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Fudge or the Rocky Road Chocolate Bark. Whatever your personal favorites are, Sweet Confections is a beautiful book with excellent recipes for all types of the best candy making.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa1be09b4) out of 5 stars fabulous book for candies and confections May 9 2012
By BB - Published on
Format: Paperback
Making candies has always intimidated me a bit. I love to bake and cook, but for some reason candy has seemed scary. Not after reading this book! I love it!

The detailed instructions and pictures make candy-making less scary, and actually EASY! So far, I've tried toffee and fudge, both were a breeze. I cannot wait to try more.

Photography is beautiful as well!
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa1be09cc) out of 5 stars Great step-by-step instructions! Dec 12 2011
By Traci D. Haley - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I've always wanted to be able to make homemade candy as well as my mom does, but every attempt has ended in failure in the past. I've lost count of the times I've had to scrape hardened, burnt, or crystallized fudge or other confection from my pan, vowing never to try making it again.

Then I found this book and, thanks to a Kindle special offer and a gift card balance, decided to buy it since it was only going to end up costing me a couple of dollars.

After receiving the book, I immediately fell in love with the delicious photos of all the recipes. Which one to try first? I also loved the step-by-step instructions on basic candy making, including the chart for how to recognize the different stages of candy. So I pulled out my candy thermometer and thought, "What the heck, I'll try making candy one more time...."

I'm happy to report that, thus far, I've made:

- Maple Peanut Pralines
- Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Fudge
- Honeycomb Candy

All were amazingly successful and downright FUN to make! The pralines didn't turn out *quite* like the author's, but I think that may have been an error on my part in what temperature to bring the sugar. They still were quite delicious, just a little less crystallized and a little more sticky than the picture.

The other two recipes turned out picture perfect and absolutely delectable... I immediately had to make another batch of each so that I could give Christmas gifts to all my friends!

My one complaint is that the recipes are pretty small yielding. I made double batches of everything and then, in the case of the fudge and honeycomb candy, made two double batches. Just using the single recipe wouldn't have given me nearly enough for the Christmas platters I was making. That's just a small nitpick, though, and easily remedied, so I'd still say this book deserves the five star rating.