Watermelon Seeds

Preparation info

  • Difficulty

    Medium

Appears in

Origin

By Ben Shewry

Published 2012

  • About

Ingredients

  • 15 g (½ oz) black sesame seeds
  • 50 g ( oz) isomalt*
  • 50 g ( oz) liquid glucose
  • sea salt flakes, to taste
  • grape seed oil, for greasing

Method

Preheat the oven to 150°C (300°F/Gas 2). Place the sesame seeds on a baking tray and lightly toast for 5 minutes or until aromatic.

In a very small saucepan, combine the isomalt and glucose over low heat and stir occasionally until the isomalt has dissolved. Raise the temperature and boil until the syrup reaches hard-crack stage, 146–154°C (295–309°F). Remove from the heat and carefully dip the base of the pan in a bowl of cold water to stop the candy overcooking.

Add the sesame seeds and swirl the pan gently to mix in. Pour the candy onto a silicone baking mat or a baking tray lined with baking paper. Cool to room temperature, then break up.

Grind the candy in a spice grinder into a fine powder, place in a bowl and season with salt. Store the powder in an airtight container (if exposed to air for too long, it will become impossible to work with).

Wash your hands thoroughly, then lightly grease your fingertips with oil. Take a tablespoon of the powder and spread it evenly across the base of a very small saucepan. Gently heat until the powder begins to dissolve again. Gently stir and, once completely dissolved, pour a small drop, about the size of a pearl, onto a piece of baking paper. Allow to cool for 6 seconds, then carefully pick it up and form the candy into the shape and size of a watermelon seed between your fingers. This takes a bit of practice — and helps if you have ‘jaded cook’s hands’ like mine — but with patience and perseverance you’ll be producing plenty of seeds in no time. Store the finished seeds in an airtight container as you go. You need to make about 20.