What is rock?
Rock is a hard candy sweet that was traditionally available in the form of a round stick because it is made by pulling a paste made from cooked sugar paste into a long cylinder.
At seaside resorts the sticks of rock are usually brightly coloured on the outside with a white centre that has the name of the town in coloured letters running through it.
There is a sugar free version of the traditional rock stick but there is also a good variety of different shapes and flavours. We are not selling the sticks as we would worry that they might not survive intact in the mail system .
Our rock fruit fancies are hand-cut from sticks of rock that have been made with clever fruit pictures down the middle and the packs look really pretty. (There are paperweights that have designs made from glass rods made in the same way).
Making rock candy
Making rock candy is very very physical and involves working with hot sugar. I have found this video which shows a rock candy made on the large scale and some of the amazing designs that can be incorporated into rock. .Unfortunately there isn't quite so much choice in the sugar free rock.
Single flavour rock candy
We also sell some speciality sugar free rock sweets. Clove rock is a traditional Irish sweets with the real flavour of cloves. One of my favourites is rhubarb rock which not only tastes like rhubarb but is coloured just like its namesake. Theres is also a spicy sugarfree ginger rock.
Why no Sugar free Edinburgh rock?
Edinburgh rock is very different from English rock in that it has a crumbly texture. This makes it very difficult to make a sugar free version as the sweeteners behave differently to sugar so it is too difficult to replicate the texture.
Another rock not available in a sugarfree form is Coltsfoot rock. This is a Lancashire speciality, made with, surprise, surprise, extract from the Coltsfoot plant. It is supposed to have medicinal properties and has a very different texture to seaside rock.