Holy Moly Batman! I have literally found the best way to eat fruit! Have you tried Tanghulu? Well, if you have not, you are missing out big time!
A crunchy and candied shell coating on the outside of pieces of fruit! It is made out of sugar water and brings fruit to a whole new level! My youngest was instantly in love! His face said it all when eating the candied shell. "Mommy, this is nummy". Buddy, you are right!
My first exposure to Tanghulu was during one of my obsessive scrolling sessions on Tiktok. Needless to say, I was intrigued and made it! The best part is that it is so easy and not time consuming!
Where does Tanghulu come from?
Tanghulu originated in the northern part of China. It is commonly made in the winter months and can be purchased at the Chinese market!
The definition is sugar on the outside of fruit. However, bacon can be used as well. Ummm.... Sweet and savory, for sure! Nonetheless, once bacon is replenished, I will have to give this a go!
All the ingredients for Tanghulu can be found in the pantry. Well, except for the fresh fruit!
- Granulated Sugar
- Water: 1 cup for the sugar/water mixture and ice water to harden candy shell
- Fruit- I used strawberries, green grapes, blueberries, oranges, blackberries, lemons and limes.
Step by step instructions
- Clean and dry fruit: Wash and pat dry all the fruit that you want to use. Set aside.
- Get equipment ready: Line baking sheet with parchment paper and put fruit on skewers. Set them aside.
- Boil sugar/water mixture: Bring the sugar/water mixture to a boil and until it reaches 300 degrees on thermometer. Turn heat off when desired temperature is reached. Prepare bowl of ice water and set aside.
- Dip fruit skewers in syrup and cold water: Dip each fruit skewer in syrup and then immediately in cold ice water to harden. Set on baking sheet and enjoy!
Tips and tricks
- DON'T stir the sugar water mixture during boiling. Sugar will crystallize and not work and you won't be able to dip the fruit in.
- Only boil sugar/water mixture until it reaches 300 degrees on candy thermometer. Syrup should be just starting to change color.
- For best results, dip skewer or piece of fruit in a bowl of ice cold water immediately after being dipped in sugar syrup. Take note, it does harden quickly.
- Use good quality parchment paper otherwise fruit will stick to paper. Use non-stick spray if needed.
- The fruit is best if eaten right away, however, the fruit can be stored in the fridge in an airtight container.
Variation and substitutions
- Savory foods such as bacon and other meats have been used
- Simple syrup or corn syrup can be substituted for sugar
It is tart and not overly sweet, with a texture similar to an apple.
- Baking sheet
- Parchment paper: Silicon baking sheet can be used as well
- Candy Thermometer
- Baking sheet
- Parchment paper
- Large saucepan
- Skewers as needed
- Candy thermometer
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 1 cup water
- 16 oz strawberries
- green grapes
- limes and lemons
- Wash and pat dry all fruits. Set aside.
- Arrange fruit on a skewer (1-2 pieces depending on size of fruit).
- Bring water and sugar mixture to a boil. Do not stir water as sugar will crystallize.
- Using the candy thermometer, boil sugar water mixture until it reaches roughly 300 degrees. This can take about 5-10 minutes. Get a large bowl of ice water ready. Set that aside.
- Once the sugar mixture has reached the desired temperature, dip fruit skewer into sugar mixture to coat the fruit. Dip immediately into the ice water (will harden immediately). Set on parchment paper and enjoy!
- Strawberry bars with banana crust
- Orange trifle with Grand Marnier cream
- Orange pineapple meringue pie
- Honey apricot cream cake
Fun fact of the day!
Baby Ruth candy bar was named after Grover Cleveland's daughter Ruth, not the baseball player.