As I’ve gotten older, I’ve gotten a bit better about not diving into candy in quite the same way I used to. (I think I lived off of various gummy candy varieties for all of 2011.) But when they find a way to blend into my world of crafts and DIY projects, I find them irresistible. So when Paul Lowe mentioned to me that there was a new DIY book out that uses the grocery store candy aisle as its main inspiration and material source, I immediately bought a copy.
Former Martha Stewart editor Jodi Levine just published Candy Aisle Crafts, a quirky and adorably addictive collection of projects that turn everyday supermarket sweets into clever projects and recipes. Jodi worked for Martha for 19 years as a craft editor, director of our beloved (and sadly no longer in print) Martha Stewart Kids magazine and as a product designer for Martha’s craft collection. She is basically the queen of all things cute and craftsy and this book is a wonderful celebration of how uplifting a DIY project can be. From colorful lollipops and bowls made of peppermint candies to polar bear cakes, Jodi’s projects are literally and figuratively the sweetest things around. Today she’s sharing one of my favorite projects with us that turns everyday peppermint candies into tiny adorable bowls. These would be fun for a kids table at a holiday dinner or a sweet way to spruce up the coffee/tea station after dinner. Thanks so much to Jodi and be sure to check out her book right here. xo, grace
Excerpted from Candy Aisle Crafts by Jodi Levine (Pottery Craft 2014)
This idea was inspired by millefiori glass bowls. They are an impressive project, but easier to make than you’d think. Some brands of peppermint swirl candies work better than others. Try different types to see which ones work best for you.
-heatproof bowl (I used a 6″ metal bowl)
-18 starlight mint candies
1. Preheat the oven to 275°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Very generously grease the outside of the bowl with the oil.
2. Place 1 candy on the baking sheet.
3. Place in the oven for 2 to 2½ minutes until the candy starts to look shiny and softens but doesn’t melt or sag.
4. Remove and place six candies around the heated candy, touching it.
5. Return to the oven and heat for 4 to 5 minutes. Remove from the oven as soon as the candies start to soften. Don’t let them melt.
6. Place 11 more candies around the circle on the baking sheet. (You can try this step with nine or ten candies for a smaller bowl.)
7. Return to the oven for 7 minutes.
8. Remove and let cool for 1 minute. Quickly trim off some of the parchment paper. With the candy still on the parchment paper, and using an oven mitt, flip the candy onto the greased bowl and quickly center the middle candy on the bowl’s bottom. Shape the candy around the bowl, using the oven mitt to press the candies into one another. Remove the parchment paper and gently lift the peppermint bowl off the bowl (it should slide right off, but if it sticks, let the candies cool for another minute or two and gently pull it off).
9. Place the finished candy bowls on top of small circles of parchment paper so they don’t stick to surfaces.