I've heard those words before. Never understood them, because I'm a fan. But I'll bet those who have uttered such hostilities toward this Halloween tread have never enjoyed it homemade, before. I first thought about making candy corn when I wondered how they actually make a candy with three colors in it. Turns out, the way they do it professionally is not the way you make it at home. On the assembly line, they make three colors of marshmallow fondant and pour them into a mold.
In the home kitchen, you need to make three candy corn snakes, mush them together, and cut. Unfortunately, for the anal retentive like me, that leaves you with two types of more-fragile corn: yellow-tipped, and white-tipped. But, the trade-off is a product that I believe is far superior to its store-bought counterpart.
The way I see it, there are two basic recipes for making homemade candy corn: One involves melting a marshmallow and combining it with confectioner's sugar (similar to the way they're made commercially). The other involves combining corn syrup with powdered milk and confectioner's sugar (similar to the way they were first made). I discovered the latter first and have been using it for three years, so that's what I used, here. I've never done the marshmallow method, but some day I will. I can't do it this year because a single recipe yields more than I can eat in a year. (In fact, before I made my candies this year, I threw out last year's stale ones.)
Almost every corn syrup candy corn recipe is just like every other. So, the first hit on Google works fine. Let's go to the pictures:
The final product.
I think we all know what the commercial stuff tastes like. This has a much more natural feel; the butter, powdered milk, and lack of carnauba wax bring it a little closer to other candies we regularly enjoy, like butterscotches and caramels. In fact, I've wondered if you dyed a piece, say, brown, and shaped it into a rectangle instead of a cone, would someone on the street recognize it as candy corn? I don't know. But I do think they'd find it delicious.