Starch-cast, crystallized, chocolate-covered liqueur centers I made a bunch of these yesterday. Accidentally ate a few. Theyâ€™re a pain to make, but dazzling when people bite into them and they burst and fill nose and mouth with the flavor and bouquet of the booze used. This measurement is critical: 1/3 cup liqueur, brandy, bourbon, or whatever alcohol, to every 2 cups sugar used to make the syrup. Otherwise, no sugar crystal shell. The starch needs to be very dry and slightly warm. Sift the corn starch and leave in a warm place (e.g. a gas oven with a pilot light, on top of a radiator with a cloth draped over, or whatever you have) for a day or two. Starch molds (the shape of the finished candy) can be any smallish shape youâ€™d like as long as it can be pushed down into the starch and leave a good impression. I donâ€™t get fussy with this, I use 1/2-inch dowels about one inch long that Iâ€™ve glued to a 1 x 4 board. I spaced them an inch apart in two rows. Some people use individual, unconnected shapes rather than the way Iâ€™ve set mine up as a mass mold. My advice is to press them into the corn starch further apart than an inch so already-formed mold-shapes pressed into the starch donâ€™t distort or collapse. The traditional way to pour the boozy syrup into the holes in the starch was to block the hole in a funnel with the handle of a wooden spoon and let it drip from the bottom, a drop at a time. Too tedious. Now, I use a plastic squeeze bottle and drip it a tad faster. <http://tinyurl.com/95gmp> My starch trays are plastic containers that are 1 1/2 inches deep and 12 inches square. To invert the candies as mentioned in the recipe, I put a 13 x 13 piece of foamcore down on top of the tray, Wrap tightly with plastic wrap, and invert the whole thing. It can get very messy if you arenâ€™t careful. Starch all over the place. 8 - 10 pounds of corn starch. 2 cups sugar 1/2 cup water 1/3 cup brandy dipping chocolate Boil sugar and water to the thread stage (227Â°F). When temperature is reached, place pan in cold water to stop boiling. Let cool for 5 minutes, add booze and cover with a damp cloth and a lid. Continue to cool until tepid (about 120Â°F). Use a box, cake pan, plastic container or whatever not more than 1 1/2 inches deep for a starch tray. Sift enough starch into the tray to fill it level across the top. Keep the rest of the corn starch warm. Press molds into the starch tray, spacing impressions far enough apart to not distort any push straight down and pull straight up to keep impressions sharp. Fill each impression with syrup very slowly almost to the top. Sift corn starch over the filled impressions about 1/4 inch deep. Leave the tray undisturbed for at least 6 hours, better for 12 hours. A crystal shell will have formed at the bottom and up the sides of each impression. Candies must be turned so the hard shell forms evenly. Once turned, they must rest another 6 or more hours. Remove each center individually, dust with a soft pastry brush and dip into chocolate of your choice. N.B. Be very careful not to break the shells when dipping - it will ruin the remaining chocolate.