Divinity fudge -- an old-fashioned holiday favorite that grandmothers have been impressing their grandchildren with for generations. It looks hard to make, it tastes hard to make, but it's a lot easier than you think to make this sweet treat!
Pick the right day -- a dry day.
For some reason, high humidity has a negative impact on making divinity. Try making this light candy on a rainy day, and you'll likely end up with white, marshmallow-cream-like goop that just won't set. Even a snowy day can keep the fudge from setting completely -- your candies will always be slightly gooey in the middle.
Assemble the ingredients
2 egg whites 1/2 cup water 2 1/2 cups granulated sugar 1/2 cup light corn syrup 1/4 teaspoon salt 1 teaspoon vanilla (imitation or pure extract)
This would be a good time to pre-set sheets of wax paper on your counter to spoon the candy onto, when it's ready.
Blend the egg whites
Use a metal mixing bowl, your final product will cool much faster than in a ceramic or glass bowl. Beat the vanilla (and peppermint extract, if you want) into the egg whites and continue until the egg whites reach the stiff peaks stage, meaning that when you stop the mixer and lift the beaters out of the foamy mass, the little peaks stay "peaked" and the peak tops don't fold over onto themselves.
Cook the sugars
Once your egg whites are ready, combine the sugar, corn syrup, water and salt in a two-quart saucepan. Clip your candy thermometer to the side, and make sure the bottom of the thermometer does not touch the bottom of the pan. Heat on medium-high, stirring only until the granulated sugar is dissolved. Allow to bubble until the muxture reaches hard ball stage (260 degrees). This will take a lot less time than you may think. If you are adding food coloring to your candy, now is the time.
Mix, and mix, and...mix
Slowly, gradually, add the hot sugar mix to the egg whites with the electric mixer, and keep beating on as high a setting as possible until the candy is thick enough to hold its shape. This could take as little as 10 minutes or as long as 20 minutes. If you are adding nuts to your candy, now is the time.
Spoon the candy out
Once the mixture is cool enough and thick enough to hold its shape, quickly spoon it onto yor pre-set sheets of wax paper with a teaspoon. Allow to cool completely, then store in a decorative tin. Divinity will keep forever in the refrigerator, and for a week or two in a tight tin on the counter.
Be very, very careful to keep the pot handle over the stove. The sugar mixture is very hot and a spill would be quite painful.