The Breukelen Life

The Breukelen Life

Food, Yoga and Travel in Brooklyn

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Contentious Coconut Cardamom Candies

December 6, 2012

Finished Candy

Written and Baked by Pitasushi

While my girl E is in China, I thought it only appropriate to try my hand at something Asian.  Never before have I made a food that was as contentious as these candies.  Generally food is either a hit or a miss; we’ve all baked cookies only to have them melt into a strange and crumby mess that defies science as we know it.   These created an extreme polar reaction of love or hate.  When biting into one of these, I began to question my taste buds and only after eating 5 I realized I loved them.  My roommate however bit into one and made that face I can only describe as “is there a hair in this?”

I decided to take it a step further and bring some to work for taste testing.  Two coworkers complimented how unique and delicious they were, while another two gave me a questioning look and asked if they were somehow related to anti-freeze.  It was at this time I decided, good or bad, it was time to post this recipe.

I don’t know how many people watched The Next Food Network Star, but a few seasons ago the host with a unique Indian flair I was rooting for actually won!  Her name is Aarti Sequeira, and after seeing her make her four ingredient holiday Coconut Toffee, I decided it was time to join E in Asia and try something new.  I warn you, ground cardamom is expensive (I paid $12 for a jar!) but the flavor is unique and imparts something floral, exotic, and kind of like Froot Loops.  Try these out if you enjoy coconut, spice, and something that may scare the neighbors.

Coconut Cardamom Candies  from Aarti Sequeira

1 ½ cups sugar
½ cup water
2 cups unsweetened finely grated coconut
¼ teaspoon ground cardamom
Drop of food coloring (optional)

Cut a piece of parchment paper large enough to fit into the bottom of an 8-inch square baking dish and spray with cooking spray.

Pour sugar and water into a saucepan over medium heat and stir to combine. Cook until the mixture reaches 235°F on a candy thermometer.  Be careful with this; a few degrees over or under will change the texture entirely.  If you don’t have a candy thermometer, drop a small spoonful in cold water.  If small strings form, the time has come!


Stir in the coconut, cardamom and add food coloring (I used one drop of blue and green, though I would advise to use something less scary for a consumable). Quickly spread the mixture evenly into the baking pan, and using a silicon spatula firmly press into a single layer.

Spreading Out

Allow the candy to cool and harden for about an hour, then cut into small squares for eating.  These aren’t just easy, they’re addictive, so be careful and enjoy.


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Pitasushi! Please e-mail me old friend.


January 4, 2013

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