A clever recipe
Makes about 550g
Butter, for greasing 200g caster sugar 100g golden syrup 100g black treacle ½ tsp cream of tartar 1 liquorice root*, pounded 1 tsp powdered liquorice or ½–1 tsp liquorice essence 65g liquid fruit pectin or 12g powdered fruit pectin ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda 1 tsp anise extract
1 Grease a 23cm square tin and line with cling film as smoothly as possible.
2 Combine the sugar, syrup, treacle and cream of tartar with 100ml water in a heavy pan. Stir over a low heat until the sugar has dissolved. Add the liquorice root and liquorice powder or essence, and boil, without stirring, until it reaches 120C.
3 Meanwhile, in a separate bowl, combine the pectin (add 4 tbsp water if using powdered), bicarbonate of soda and ½ tsp salt.
4 Pour the pectin mixture into the syrup and stir to combine. Boil again until the syrup reaches 103C, then stir in the anise extract.
5 Pour the syrup into the tin, discarding the root, and leave to set for about 4 hours. Turn out onto a chopping board and break into shapes. Will keep in an airtight container for up to 3 weeks.