Saturday, March 7, 2009

An Old-Fashioned Taffy Pull

All right Everyone,

I need to see a raise of hands here. How many of you have heard of taffy-pulling before? How many of you have actually done it? (By the way, the technological equivalent to raising your hand is leaving a comment. ;-)

I'm warning you (not apologizing - just warning you!) I have a lot of pictures from just this one event, in which our family and the Einwechters get together to pull taffy. Ben blew me away by letting me have all his photos from the evening as well as giving me blogging privileges. I had so much fun putting this together!

One last thing before we get to the pictures, I have a little competition for anyone who is interested. The majority of these photos were taken by the Einwechters, but I did post eight of my own. The challenge(?) is to figure out which eight are mine. Just leave a comment identifying eight of them. Whoever has the most correct wins. I will announce the winner's name next time (if there is a winner :-) and will also post a photo of him/her if they send me one.
Yes, we are friends, and No, we are not practicing karate! (We are merely pantomiming the taffy-pulling process.)

The only violent aspect to the evening were these two prizefighters that we hired to guard the taffy as it cooled.

The first batch was so hard that four people couldn't even stretch the stuff.

I love the determination, Abigail!

This ought to strengthen your muscles, Candace. ;-)
The second batch, on the other hand, was so gooey that we had to start pulling it outdoors to help it stiffen.

"How can I prove I've got muscles with this stuff...???"

A sticky moment.

"Whoa! I never saw it that bad before!"

One little scrounger is determined not to let any of the sweetness go to waste.

Is 3 really the number of perfection?

"Yes, Ma'am! If this stuff doesn't turn out, I'll take full responsibility. Don't you worry!"

And it did: it turned out beautifully! (Don't judge from what Josiah's doing - he's just over-protective. ;-)

I think I'll start giving taffy-pulling classes. It was a lot of fun, especially since the students are bright and caught on exceptionally fast!

"The old sage" and "energy man" go at it.

To see him talk, you would think that HE is the pro! ;-)

Conrad: "Listen to the young upstart! He thinks he knows it all already!"

(Btw, Conrad, it's good to see both your eyes looking normal again. More on that next time...)

To me, this photo embodies good taffy-pulling. If you don't have extremely buttery hands or if you aren't pulling in the Z pattern, your enterprise is doomed.

'Without salt there is no savor';
Without vanilla there is no flavor!
The first is needed in salt-water taffy;
The latter added to homemade taffy.

Stretch it out...

...snip it off...

...wrap it up.

Finished product.

There is even an art to cutting the wrappers.

Now, Karen... I thought you wanted to learn how to pull taffy? If it was candy-canes you wanted to make, why ever didn't you say so? :-)

Perforated Taffy

The 2nd focus of the Evening

I'm trying to decide what our main objective really was that evening: pulling taffy so that we could take photos or taking photos to remember pulling taffy.

The photography session had to be started out properly by examining a master's work (a book of Karsh photographs in this case).

Dad, wipe that benevolent smile off your face! That's Fidel Castro you're looking at! ;-)

A creative photographer doesn't need a studio to get...

...beautiful portraits!

Typical Christian.

Faith was thrilled that I abandoned the camera. She must have taken around seventy-five photos - a blossoming photographer?

Listen, if you have only had salt-water taffy in your life and if that is what you have been comparing this to, stop! Pulled taffy is totally different and much better!

Divvying out the goodies. (How was your "thinking," Einwechters? - see bag ;-)

While doing a little research on taffy-pulling, I stumbled across this definition for a "taffy pull". Couldn't resist!

"A large group of self-absorbed people gathering for the purpose of patting themselves on the back, telling the world how great they are."

Somebody's sleepy.


We had a wonderful time teaching you, Einwechters! Everybody else, if you want to learn the art, you can email me at to schedule your own taffy tutoring class.

So after much taffy-pulling and leg-pulling (yes, that is a fake email address ;-), I am signing off.

God Bless,