My kiddos and I made agar agar based candy this weekend to decorate cupcakes for my mom on Mother’s Day.
I followed a recipe for the gummy-like sweets but cut it in half since I didn’t need a ton (and I’m glad I did, because it was really delicious and way too easy to eat).
I bought my agar online but you can find it at health stores or Asian markets. It was my first time to use it, but I think I’m already a convert to it from gelatin. It sets harder (which I prefer), is vegan (I’m not, but sometimes I think the flavor of gelatin is off-putting), is totally clear when it sets, and can be boiled without messing up the gel.
We used this recipe, just halved. (I added a splash of orange extract and it was really good. I didn’t have any citric acid, so it was very sweet. Next time I’ll try adding it to see if I like the sweet/sour.) https://sugargeekshow.com/recipe/kohakutou-crystal-gummy-candy/
You can leave it out for a few days to get its signature crunchy outside, but I can’t leave food sitting out on my counter without worrying about bugs or my cats. So, I put it in my dehydrator at the lowest heat setting possible overnight. It worked great! After it dries a bit it turns opaque and gets the lightest, kinda tender, sugary, crunchy coating with a very soft gummy center that’s snappy? I guess? It’s not rubbery but not like jello—I’m not sure how to describe it. It bites cleanly and doesn’t dissolve. It’s a nice texture! Aesthetically-I preferred the pieces that I tore to the ones I cut into crystal shapes. I really liked the ragged edges.
My boys and I added some edible gold paint to make it fancy and used it to top some cupcakes. Pretty! (Sorry for the bad lighting—they’re opaque but still very cool in tone.)